A bit about the project:
the community is not a haphazard collection of individuals considers the ways that plants help us to remediate land impacted by the petrochemical industry while also wondering how we might support them in return. Participants were invited to think through together (at a distance) strategies for working with plants in ways that are more supporting: that move beyond thinking about them as ‘technology’ performing a task, but rather as collaborators. Calling for a recalibration of perspective, the project invited participants to consider how, instead of relying on plants to do all of this work for us, we might in turn offer aid by supporting their ability to grow into the future.
Upon committing to participate in the project online, participants were sent a Natural Plant Community Toolkit in the mail as preparation for planting their seeds in the spring. Each toolkit contained a custom-made package including seeds that have the potential to facilitate phytoremediation in sites contaminated with Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons.
This project WAs for those planting seeds within Alberta, Ontario, or Quebec:
That’s because, the Canadian plastics industry is concentrated in these three provinces:
Alberta [primarily thermoplastic resins derived mainly from natural gas].
Ontario [primarily thermoplastic and thermoset resins derived from both crude oil and natural gas].
Quebec [primarily thermoplastic and thermoset resins derived from both crude oil and natural gas].
We are bound by imposed colonial provincial borders:
These borders often differ from, and are at odds with the historical, cultural, and ecological realities of regions.
Plants, though, are bound by specific geographies and locations based on their growing needs: they don’t recognize constructed borders.
The political realities of these regions means that they are also now shaped by the centralization of the petroleum industry. While this project determines locations based on provincial borders out of convenience, it is my hope that you will consider the impacts of these imposed borders while you engage across it.
The project hoped that, together, we could consider how plants might help us to think about these borders otherwise. Participants were asked to locate themselves with the help of native-land.ca