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Polar bear drinking from Hudson Bay near Seal River Heritage Lodge

A peaceful and refreshing drink from the pristine waters of Hudson Bay. Photo by Ian Johnson

By Vanessa Desorcy

April 22 is Earth Day, and while we believe it’s important to honour and protect our planet every day, this day of observation is an excellent time to reflect and look forward.

After a year of quiet skies and roadways, it feels like there’s a pent-up demand for travel. Outlets such as Conde Nast report that demand for sustainable travel will be greatly increased in a post-pandemic world.

Churchill Wild has led the way in terms of sustainable tourism in northern Manitoba, and within the past couple of years, we’ve been building on that legacy with Prairie Wild.

This orchard and garden will bring fresh, wholesome produce to our lodges and community, but its benefits won’t stop there! Thanks to the regenerative agriculture principles employed by Riley Friesen and his team, it’s also going to bring biodiversity back to the soil leading to more nutritious harvests.

Riley Friesen of Prairie Wild points to new growth in his orchard

Something fresh and nutritious is about to bloom at Prairie Wild

What is regenerative agriculture?

Regenerative agriculture is a set of farming practices that restore soil biodiversity and have the potential to mitigate climate change. Regeneration International defines it as a holistic land management practice that leverages the power of photosynthesis in plants to close the carbon cycle, and build soil health, crop resilience, and nutrient density.

Riley follows principles of organic farming that include: no-tillage, chemical-free fertilizers, permaculture, and natural pest management.

What are the benefits of regenerative agriculture?

There are many amazing benefits to regenerative agriculture. These include:

  • A reduction in greenhouse gas emissions
  • Increased yields
  • Creation of drought-resistant soil
  • Revitalization of local economies
  • Enhanced biodiversity
  • The improved nutritional profile of crops

We’re so excited to add Prairie Wild to our lineup of sustainability initiatives. Not only does this mean an even fresher culinary experience at our ecolodges, but it also supports the 2021 Earth Day campaign of ‘Restore our Earth.’

Guests of Seal River Heritage Lodge observing a polar bear at ground level

Walking with polar bears minimizes our environmental footprint.

What are some other ways we show our love for the earth?

We’ve been incorporating “green” practices into our operations for decades. In fact, the very premise of our company is based on sustainability—walking with polar bears, rather than using a lot of vehicles. Yes, we do employ the use of low-impact ATVs sometimes, but very minimally, and we’re relying less and less on them every year. Most of our excursions are people-powered!

Our lodges were designed to let in a lot of natural light and all our light fixtures and appliances are energy efficient. The power we use comes almost exclusively from solar power, a goal we’ve been working towards for several years.

Our founders, Mike and Jeanne Reimer, have instilled an earth-friendly mentality into our entire team, inspiring us to live greener lives at home and in our head office.

We’re a group of composters, CSA-lovers, reusable water bottle junkies, and recyclers who love wildlife and our wild planet.

How do you show your love for our planet? Let us know in the comments!

Happy Earth Day, friends!

Learn more about Earth Day 2021

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Please note: Our staff will be away from the office for a team building retreat May 23 - May 25, 2024.