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April 18, 2017
For Immediate Release

Waterloo – Earth Day 2017 will be celebrated around the world on Saturday, April 22. First observed in the United States in 1970, Earth Day has since spread to over 193 countries and is celebrated each spring to bring awareness to environmental issues facing the world.

Several Laurier professors who are experts in climate change, sustainability and environmental issues are available for comment:

Jennifer Baltzer, associate professor in Laurier’s Department of Biology, is an expert in forest ecology, global change and stress ecophysiology. She is Canada Research Chair in Forests and Global Change. Contact information: or 519-884-0710 or ext. 4188.

Debora VanNijnatten, associate professor in Laurier’s Political Science Department and North American Studies program, is an expert in Canadian and American environmental policy, cross-border environmental cooperation, and Great Lakes environmental cooperation. Contact information: or 519-844-0710 ext. 3841.

Manuel Riemer, associate professor in Laurier’s Department of Psychology, is an expert in the psychology of sustainability. He applies community and other psychological principles, theories and tools to address issues related to sustainability, including global climate change mitigation and resiliency, with a special focus on environmental justice and youth engagement in environmental action. Contact information: or 519-884-0710 ext. 2982.

William Quinton, associate professor in Laurier’s Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, is a leading member of several national and international scientific associations. His research has explored the future state of Canada’s northern surface freshwater and its vulnerability to climatic warming and human activities. Contact information: or 519-884-0710 ext. 3281.

Stephanie DeWitte-Orr, assistant professor in Laurier’s Health Sciences and Biology Departments, is an expert on the effects of environmental toxicants in innate immunity in aquatic organisms. Contact information: or 519-884-0710 ext. 4317.

Michael P. Wilkie, professor in Laurier’s Department of Biology, is an expert in environmental physiology and the toxicology of waterborne pesticides and contaminants, such as metals and ammonia, to fish. His research combines whole animal techniques with biochemical, morphological, electrophysiological, and molecular approaches to determine how different species of fish respond, cope, adapt and live in unpredictable and extreme environments. Contact information: or 519-884-1970 ext. 3313.

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Kevin Crowley, Director
Communications & Public Affairs
Wilfrid Laurier University

T: 519.884.0710 x3070



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