Former English student in Top 10 for worldwide blogging competition
by: Emilie Bourque Whittle
A former Memorial English student is close to being the official blogger for World Environment Day events, happening in Brazil in June.
Scott Bartlett first heard about the competition through TreeHugger, a media outlet dedicated to driving sustainability mainstream and who is hosting the competition jointly with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Earlier this year, UNEP and TreeHugger invited green bloggers from across the world to submit an article to the World Environment Day (WED) competition.
Around 150 entries were received and each stood a chance to win a fully-paid trip to Brazil, the host country of WED 2012, to blog on activities taking place across the country on June 5.
A UNEP-TreeHugger jury has now selected the top 10 bloggers, including Mr. Bartlett, who is an aspiring fiction writer and environmental activist from Paradise, currently living in St. John’s.
“I think a lot of people view being environmentally conscious as merely a nice thing to do, when in fact environmental issues will directly impact our chances of health, happiness and prosperity in the 21st century,” Mr. Bartlett responded on why he’s keen on being the chosen blogger. “I think blogging for World Environment Day would be an excellent opportunity to help spread this message farther than I’m currently able to.”
The top 10 finalists are now battling it out in The Rio+20 Big Blog Off, where the winner will be determined based on public votes. Favourite bloggers can be voted for on the WED website.
“I’m a fiction writer in addition to being an environmental blogger, and that’s helped me realize how important it is that prose be as interesting and accessible as possible,” said Mr. Bartlett. If he wins the competition, he hopes his words will appeal to a wide audience.
“If I can alert people who normally don’t think about the environment to the gravity of our environmental challenges, I’ll consider it a job well done.”
Throughout April, the finalists will each publish two new articles and the online community will decide which posts they like best by voting on the page. Whichever blogger accumulates the most votes by April 30 wins the competition.
According to the UNEP website, “WED 2012 is set to be the biggest global event for positive action on the environment in the run-up to the Rio+20 conference on sustainable development, to be held on June 20-22, 2012, in Rio de Janeiro.”
Mr. Bartlett says he’s been thinking about and enacting ways to reduce his environmental impact for years, but he didn’t start getting vocal about it until he started his own blog in December of 2010. To read his thoughts, visit batshite.com. To vote in the blog off, visit www.unep.org/wed/bloggers/.