Claire Heffernan

Semi-retired; alumnus University of Victoria, 1992 - Quathiaski Cove BC
Quathiaski Cove BC

I fly, on average, once every five years. In the past, I combined academic activities with family visits. My husband Dan (University of Saskatchuwan Saskatoon), who is always way ahead of the game, made the vow to never fly again in the 1980’s.

I’m so encouraged to see that there is now a group and a site with this type of mandate.

I’m not sure what resolution is to address this “fly vacation” culture. I’ve always thought that taking the train to academic or other gatherings would be one solution. Just think of all the work you could get done locked on a train for three days. If other participants got on the same train, you could even have seminars an route.

When you think of all the aviation traffic, it’s really quite obscene, wasteful, polluting and ignorant. Who knows what long term damage we are inflicting on the atmosphere with all this frivolous and unnecessary travel.

As for my bio … semi retired, and building house in the country that I designed and we have a big vegetable garden. As for vacations, we travel by car >200 kms to hike or cross country ski, or travel locally by bike or canoe.

When I was younger and had more energy I was involved in creating a Campus Green Plan for our university loosely based on a model from UC Davis.

Over the years, I have been involved in dozens of environmental campaigns in British Columbia.

I am from a working class family with few university graduates. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to attend university. However, I feel we university graduates now have an obligation and duty to address and find solutions to the problems we humans have created.