What do you believe is or will be a significant environmental issue in the coming years?

The judges are now reviewing the revised op-eds. We will announce winners on May 15. Stay tuned!

Become a better writer and share your ideas and passion for the environment with a larger audience. Start a conversation. Inform others with your evidence and arugments.

The Faculty of Environment invites you to write an evidence-based research opinion editorial (op-ed) for publishing online.

The article can be based on a paper that was written, a part of their current course work, or a new work specifically written for the contest. Entries will be reviewed by a panel of experts, including journalists and faculty, with particular interest and expertise in journalistic writing on environmental issues. Finalists will be eligible to take part in a writing workshop with a leading environmental journalist and editor.


  • Finalists (12-15 students) will be eligible to attend a professional op-ed writing workshop with a journalist. 
  • Winners will each receive cash prizes and see their op-eds published.
    • The top three winners will each receive a $500 prize.
    • The five runners-up will each receive a $100 prize.

Contest Rules

  • Contest is open to all undergraduate students with a program in the Faculty of Environment AND any student from any program who is currently enrolled in a course offered by the Faculty of Environment.
  • In a short Op-Ed, make a case for what you believe is or will be a significant environmental issue in the coming years.
  • Submissions have a maximum word count of 1000 words, with in-text hyperlink citations.
  • Include your name, student number and contact information on a separate page as submissions are judged blind.


We are grateful for the assistance of our judges:

  • Dr. Zafar Adeel, Professor of Professional Practice and Executive Director, Pacific Water Research Centre
  • Dr. Meg Holden, Associate Professor, Geography
  • Alix Patterson, Social Entrepreneur and Author of Inspired and Within Our Reach
  • Dr. Mark Roseland, Professor, Resource and Environmental Management and Director, Centre for Sustainable Development
  • Robyn Smith, Editor, The Tyee

Helpful Websites

We searched the web for some sites that may help you in crafting your op-ed:


  • Monday, March 20: Deadline for student submissions at MIDNIGHT!
  • Saturday, April 1: Short list of students (up to 15) will be eligible for enrolment in a professional writing workshop with Robyn Smith, the editor-in-chief of The Tyee.
  • Saturday, April 22: Robyn Smith will teach participants how to write a strong, throught-provoking Op-Ed.
  • Monday, May 1: Deadline for revised final Op-Ed submissions.
  • Monday, May 15: Judges anounce the winners.
  • May - June: Winners will be published on the Faculty of Environment's website and may be published in The Tyee, as well.


The Tyee, established in 2003, is a well-respected, solutions-focused, digital native news site that publishes news, reviews and commentary not typically covered by BC and Canada's mainstream media. They aim to inform and enliven the democratic conversation necessary to improve environmental, economic and social conditions and are committed to engaging and mentoring students as part of their educational mandate.

YouFund.me is a social fundraising platform, utilizing the power of the crowd to support a variety of causes and charities.


Please contact Joanna Ashworth <jashwort@sfu.ca>.