New for 2015, TransWorld SNOWboarding, in partnership with Protect Our Winters, will present the Climate Activist Award to Marie-France Roy at the 16th Annual Riders' Poll Awards.
With the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and NASA recently announcing that 2014 was the hottest year across global land and ocean surfaces, the creation of this new award is especially timely, as this is the first year since 1990 that the high temperature record was broken in the absence of El Niño conditions in the central and eastern Pacific Ocean near the equator. The 10 warmest years on record have also all occurred since 2000.
"Snowboarders are one of the first groups to really see the effects of climate change firsthand and we stand to lose a lot from less predictable snowfall and snowpack," says Chris Steinkamp, Executive Director of Protect Our Winters. "Not only are we facing shorter and more unpredictable winters, but increased avalanche danger due to more erratic freeze/thaw cycles. We hope this award inspires our community to come together over this issue and change our own habits. We also need to continue pressuring world leaders to make policy changes that regulate and reduce carbon emissions because we all want to keep riding for generations to come."
To select candidates for the award, TransWorld SNOWboarding and Protect Our Winters looked for riders who inspired others, took meaningful action, and did something notable in the past year in the fight against climate change.
After careful consideration of several riders who embodied this spirit, Marie-France Roy was chosen for her bold move to step away from filming a traditional video part to make The Little Things movie.
The film includes some riding but focuses mostly on Roy's own efforts to reduce her environmental footprint and highlights other riders taking action on the grassroots and political levels, including Jeremy Jones, Gretchen Bleiler, and Tamo Campos.
"Marie took a risk and stepped out of her comfort zone to make this film," says Gerhard Gross, Managing Editor at TransWorld SNOWboarding. "She had no idea how it would be received since it's very different from most snowboard videos, but breaking away from the status quo is exactly the type of action we need to see more of in the fight against climate change."
While it's difficult to have zero carbon footprint, Roy has consistently looked for ways to reduce her impact in her daily life, making her an example to snowboarders everywhere, another reason she was chosen for this award.
Join us on Friday, January 30 at the Ogden Theater in Denver, Colorado to recognize Marie-France Roy for breaking the mold and standing up for what she believes in. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. The show starts at 8:30 p.m. For those who can't make it, catch videos of the winners at TWSNOW.com/riderspoll.