Ecology and Environmentalism –- What’s the Difference?

Friday February 20, 2009 – 7:30 p.m. at the Almonte United Church Social Hall

Speaker: Gray Merriam

Topic: Ecology and Environmentalism –- What’s the Difference?


Ecology is a science with a long history. Environmentalism is a relatively recent social, political and economic movement. ‘Green wash’ now appears in many facets of society. In it, ecological benefits often are confused with human amenities. How do the interests of environmentalists coincide with and support the ecological pursuits of scientists?

Speaker’s Profile:

Gray Merriam retired in 1997 from the Biology Department at Carleton University. He has taught, directed graduate students and done research at the University of Texas and Carleton University and had academic affiliations in Poland, Sweden, France, the Netherlands and Utah.

He was President of the International Association for Landscape Ecology, Series Editor of the IALE Study Series in Landscape Ecology, and on the Editorial Board of Landscape Ecology. He directed: the Landscape Ecology Research Laboratory, the Environmental Science Program, the Environment and Policy Institute, the Department of Biology and the Ottawa-Carleton Institute of Biology at Carleton University.

In 1997 he received the Distinguished Landscape Ecologist Award from the United States Chapter of the International Association for Landscape Ecology and in 1999 he received the Distinguished Scholarship Award of the International Association for Landscape Ecology. In 2003 he received an honourary Doctor of Science degree from the University of Moncton. In 2005 he received a Latornell Conservation Pioneer Award.

In retirement, he has tried to apply his ecological knowledge to the landscapes where he lives. He was the founding President of the Friends of the Salmon River is the Chair of the Frontenac Stewardship Council and is ecological advisor to the Kennebec Lake Association.

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