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.

Just Posted

Coastal GasLink awards contract for camp near Burns Lake

Local residents to be consulted before location is picked

Houston prepares for projected growth

Transportation Master Plan anticipates traffic increase

Houston’s Pleasant Valley Plaza to host information session about bitcoin

Locals will have a chance to ask questions about the proposed farm

Northwest firefighters deployed to eastern Canada

They will help with fire suppression efforts in Ontario and Quebec

Work “well underway” for shared revenue in northwest B.C.

Resource Benefits Alliance developing proposal for the province

All-Indigenous teams break new ground, making BC Games history

This is the first time there have been dedicated Indigenous teams at the BC Summer Games

ZONE 8: Williams Lake’s Gabby Knox is a 2nd-generation BC Games competitor

Both parents competed in softball, but Knox is making waves in the pool

Canada to resettle dozens of White Helmets and their families from Syria

There are fears the volunteers would become a target for government troops

Francesco Molinari wins British Open at Carnoustie

It is his first win at a major and the first by an Italian

Government sets full-time salary range for Justin Trudeau’s nanny

At its top range, the order works out to a rate of $21.79 per hour, assuming a 40-hour work week

ZONE 7: Players’ insistence delivers North West softball team to BC Games

North West hasn’t had a girls softball team since 2010 but that changed at the Cowichan Summer Games

Recovery high schools could help teens before addiction takes hold: B.C. parents

Schools could provide mental health supports and let parents discuss their children’s drug use openly

Haida Gwaii village faces housing crisis, targets short-term rentals

Housing is tight and the village is pretty close to zero vacancy

Evacuation numbers remain at nearly 1,000 as B.C. wildfires rage on

200 firefighters and 18 helicopters were working to increase the containment of the fires

Most Read