Scientist, environmentalist and broadcaster David Suzuki is pictured in a Toronto hotel room, on Monday November 11 , 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Walk of Fame bash celebrates David Suzuki, Donovan Bailey, Anna Paquin

Suzuki says he’ll be thinking of his late parents as he accepts the honour

Canada’s Walk of Fame adds environmentalist David Suzuki, sprinter Donovan Bailey, and actress Anna Paquin to its ranks tonight with a splashy gala.

The annual bash will also posthumously induct civil-rights pioneer Viola Desmond, business leader Ted Rogers, and country crooner Stompin’ Tom Connors.

Suzuki says he’ll be thinking of his late parents as he accepts the honour, which recognizes his efforts to champion the environment while making science accessible to average Canadians.

The 81-year-old says the issues facing the planet are as urgent as ever, and he urges Canadians to embrace sustainable living.

This year’s gala is expected to be broadcast next year, but a spokesman says no date has yet been set.

Global will air a one-hour retrospective special Dec. 3, hosted by “Will & Grace” star Eric McCormack.

“I wish my mom and dad were here. They were Canadian born-and-raised all their lives and yet when (the Second World War) came they lost all rights of citizenship and were shipped out of Vancouver and kept in camps for three years,” says Suzuki, whose family later moved to Ontario.

“I wish they were alive to see what Canada has become in that time.”

Suzuki is an outspoken activist for numerous causes including his Vancouver-based research and advocacy group, the David Suzuki Foundation. But the longtime host of CBC-TV’s “The Nature of Things” says he’s proudest of making science appealing and accessible to average people.

“I tried to make it as popular as possible,” he says.

“My father was my biggest fan but also my biggest critic and he watched all the stuff I did and he would call me and say, ‘Look, I’m your father, I love you, but I have to tell you I didn’t understand that at all and if I can’t understand it, how do you expect Joe Blow to understand? You’ve got to do better.’ I always think of my father when I’m looking at that camera.”

Suzuki says the current state of the environment is “very sad and depressing.”

“For over 40 years, the leading scientists have been telling us we’re heading on a dangerous path, we’ve got to change direction. But now, politics and economics interfere and we’re not paying attention to what was the survival strategy of our species, which was foresight. Now we say, ‘No, no, no, we can’t afford that, it’ll cost too much,’” says Suzuki.

“We don’t have much time and we can’t wait for everybody to buy an electric car and take public transit. We’ve all got to do those things but we also need politicians to make big decisions now.”

This year’s Canada’s Walk of Fame additions bring the number of inductees to 173.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Recycling services in Queen Charlotte, Port Clements expanding next week

Residential plastics will be accepted again, but most residential transfer stations remain closed

‘At least they’re safe:’ Arrival of new Syrian refugee family to Haida Gwaii delayed due to COVID-19

Operation Refugees says family stuck in Lebanon with no flights, ‘but at least they’re safe’

‘Good news:’ Council of the Haida Nation releases guidelines for expanding social circles

Next steps also say outdoor spaces such as parks, playgrounds, trails may be reopening for day use

Gudangaay Tlaats’gaa Naay wins ‘Most Outstanding School’ award

B.C. School Sports will present school with banner, add GTN to plaque as winners of 2019-2020 year

‘A time of transition:’ CHN looking to release next steps of pandemic response this week

State of local emergency is in effect; Gaagwiis says CHN developing indicators to guide next steps

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

B.C. ranchers, lodge operators say Indigenous land title shuts them out

Tsilhqot’in jurisdiction affects grazing, access to private property

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

Greater Victoria drive-thru window smashed after man receives burger without mustard

Greater Victoria Wendy’s staff call police after man allegedly rips Plexiglas barrier off window

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Murder charge upgraded in George Floyd case, 3 other cops charged

Floyd’s family and protesters have repeatedly called for criminal charges against all four officers

Young killer whale untangles itself from trap line off Nanaimo shore

DFO marine mammal rescue unit was en route as whale broke free from prawn trap line

Racist incident shocks Vancouver Island First Nation

Port Alberni RCMP investigating after video shows truck wheeling through Tseshaht territory

Most Read