Episodes

Episode of our radio show / podcast.

Right Whales: The “Canary in the Coal Mine”

 

If you live in Edmonton and have been to West Edmonton Mall you are probably familiar with ‘the whale’. You know, the one that was prolific in the 90’s and caused mass dismay when it was put into storage? There was cause for celebration in 2015 when the mall reintroduced the big bronze whale into its natural habitat among bustling shoppers. This metal mall whale is a small replica of the right whale that can be found, not at a mall in Edmonton, but in the Atlantic ocean. If you’re fond of that kind-of-dirty but iconic mall whale you might be sad to hear that this has been a tough year on the oceans’ Right Whale population. Recently the bodies of more than 9 right whales have floated to the surface along the Atlantic coast.

Terra Informer Amanda Rooney spoke with Sean Brilliant, the Canadian Wildlife Federation‘s senior conservation biologist, about right whales and what can be done to help conserve this iconic Canadian species. Amanda also touched base with Sean on the Canadian Wildlife Federation’s campaign to reduce single use plastics.

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Photo by New England Aquarium

 

Faith + Futurism

church and mountains by edwademd.jpg

”The Swiss Alps – God’s Country” by edwademd

This week on Terra Informa, we have two great pieces from our archives. First we have a story on faith and climate justice. Terra Informer Trevor Chow-Fraser talks to Bishop Susan Johnson to hear more on what inspires people of faith to get involved in international climate negotiations. Then we talk to Alex Steffen, Planetary Futurist, journalist, and sustainability advocate. He thinks it’s time to stop looking at the second hand on our watch and look up and begin to think about what kind of world we’re leaving to our grandchildren. Matt Hirji sits down with him at the University of Alberta’s International Week 2014.

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Faith and Climate Justice

Previously we heard from three guests—an analyst, an activist, and a Bishop—about Fast for the Climate, a campaign based off of the hunger strike that thousands of people took part in during the Warsaw climate change talks. This week, Trevor Chow-Fraser wanted to hear more on what inspires people of faith to get involved in the international climate negotiations. To figure it out, Trevor step back and ask them how they first came to connect their faith with the environment.

Alex Steffen, Planetary Futurist

In today’s fast paced milieu, chasing the here and now can blind us from the dangers that lie ahead —  just past the horizon. Our conversations are often dominated by present concerns… with very little credence given to the impacts that our current decisions will have on our world in the future. Alex Steffen is a self-described planetary futurist. He sits down with Matt Hirji while at the University of Alberta’s International Week.

Headlines

Toronto the resilient: how the city plans to adapt to climate change in 2050

The city of Toronto has put forward a bill called Transform TO, calling to reduce the cities greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by the year 2050. Plans to meet this ambitious goal include the increased use of solar panels, dense urban centers and new homes that minimize greenhouse gas output. The city also plans to divert 95% of waste from landfills by increasing recycling and reuse programs. Read more here. 

Bear 148

Bear 148 was caught in Canmore this week after what seems was hundreds of encounters with humans. You may know this grizzly for when she became viral after joining a rugby practice in Banff, as well as many other encounters she has had with people. Bear 148 was not known to be aggressive, though in a recent incident she charged a man pushing a stroller while he was walking his dog. After this she was captured and released back into the far end of her home range to minimize human interaction. Parks staff say this comes as a reminder about the balance between keeping animal habitat and maintaining the safety of visitors in the park. Read more here. 

Ancient fungi could help Canada’s future northern forests

Research from the University of British Columbia has found a symbiotic fungi helping trees to migrate during times of high temperature stress due to climate change. These fungi had been laying dormant for thousands of years and were able to survive due to specialized spores. Jason Pither and Brian Pickles have been leading the new research. Read more here.

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Gems from our Archives: Tale of the Evan’s Cherry

Weeping Cherry TRee

Weeping Cherry Tree in Bloom by Todd Heft

This week on Terra Informa we re-air a piece from 2014 that we almost lost track of! It’s the tale of the Evan’s Cherry, a prolific fruit in the Edmonton region. This story takes you through the adventure of past Terra Informer, Danielle Dolgoy, who went to some lengths to figure out how this plant came to be so ubiquitous.

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Headlines

Concern for Iqaluit’s Water Supply

It’s hard living in Northern Canada. Beyond the issues of melting permafrost and boil advisories, there’s a new concern for Iqaluit’s water supply. A study published this year by York University and University of Waterloo Researchers used hydrologic modelling to conclude that Iqaluit may face a water shortage within 5 years. Read more here. 

Seoul Street

South Korea’s capital city of Seoul recently opened “Seoul Street” — a kilometer-long green walkway built on a former highway. The project is part of a larger movement to make the city of 10 million people more pedestrian-friendly. It’s similar to High Line, another green walkway built on a former road in New York City. Seoul Street is a forest microcosm with 24,000 trees, potted plants and flowers. Read more here.

The Wolastoq Grand Council’s Campaign to Restore St. John River’s Maliseet name

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples includes the right “to designate and retain their own names for communities, places and persons.” This is what Grand Chief Ron Tremblay had in mind when he proposed the name change of the St. John’s River to the traditional Maliseet name, Wolastoq. Wolastoq means “beautiful, bountiful river.” So far, the New Brunswick government has rejected the idea, given that the river passes through Maine and changing the name would require co-operation with the US government. Read more here. 

Listener Survey

CJSR is volunteer-powered radio. Volunteers serve on our board, keep our music library fresh, make award-winning news programming, keep our equipment running, and of course spin music live for everyone out there in radio-land. What are your favourite shows? Who are your favourite hosts? Fill out this listener survey and let us know by July 5th!

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Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation

blooming onion

Photo by EROVIKOVA FOTO

This week we have an interview about how municipalities are taking leadership in climate mitigation while also making strides for adaptation. Amanda Rooney and Charly Blais sat down with Danielle Koleyak, an environmental project manager with the city of Edmonton. Then we have a story about how the health care industry can mitigate its contribution to climate change, brought to you by Climate Radio.

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Municipalities and Climate Adaptation

In light of the United States pulling out of the Paris Agreement and the striking response from municipalities that in turn adopted the Paris agreement on their own, we thought that we would explore how municipalities can push for action and plan on how to adapt to climate change and environmental issues. Amanda Rooney and Charly Blais sat down with Danielle Koleyak, an Environmental Project Manager with the City of Edmonton. We spoke with her about Edmonton’s newly developing climate change adaptation and resilience strategy and about the power that local leaders and municipalities have in addressing climate change issues.

Climate Change in the Health Care Setting

Segment from Climate Radio: The health care industry has a critical role to play in climate change mitigation. Global Green and Healthy Hospitals, GGHH, is a network that brings together hospitals, health systems, and health organizations from around the world under the shared goal of reducing the environmental footprint of the health sector and contributing to improved public and environmental health. We caught up with Nick Thorp, the Global Community Manager of GGHH, and he explains what they are doing to improve public and environmental health. 

What’s Happening

Biomimicry Workshop

Do you enjoy the strange mix of nature, technology and science?  Biomimicry Alberta is hosting a two day workshop in Edmonton on June 24th and 25th. The workshop will explore strategies from the natural world and investigate how they can inform human design and technology. The weekend will include providing a broad introduction to the concept of biomimicry with a focus on the insect world– and the program includes presentations from local naturalists and researchers. This workshop is intended for students and professionals from any discipline and background interested in design and sustainability. Register for the workshop here

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Riding the Trans Canada Trail

 

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Photo by Edmund Aunger in Cochrane, Alberta on the Trans Canada Trail

After spending the last two years on the Trans Canada Trail, Sarah Jackson is set to become the first woman on record to complete the 11,500 km hike.

This week, we have a story about the Trans Canada Trail. We have an interview with Edmund Aunger, a cyclist with a petition to make the Trans Canada Trail safer, and we have a follow-up interview with Paul Labarge, Chairman of the Board of the Trans Canada Trail Organization to get his perspective.

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What’s Happening

Deadline set for Canada to improve an Albertan National Park

The United Nations has given Canada 9 months to outline a plan intended to improve the health of the country’s largest national park, Wood Buffalo National Park, or risk having the park added to the UN’s list of endangered world heritage sites.The park is home to one of the world’s last self-regulating bison herds and the only remaining nesting ground for the endangered whooping crane. Read more here. 

Same-sex vulture couple hatch abandoned egg

A monogamous pair of male griffon vultures at the Artis Amsterdam Royal Zoo in the Netherlands have successfully hatched an abandoned egg after zookeeper Job van Tol noticed the egg on the zoo’s aviary floor. Van Tol reports that the vulture couple are working together to protect and feed their adopted offspring and the chick appears to be doing fantastically. Read more here. 

International solar SUN-day

This Sunday, the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada and the Charlie Bates Solar Astronomy Project present International Solar SUN-day at Hawrelak Park, an international effort being held in more than 20 countries around the world, celebrating the summer solstice weekend. In addition to educating the public on the science of our sun, this free event will have specialized solar telescopes and access to real time solar cameras for safe and stunning views of the Sun. Click here for more information on this event.

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Alberta Rural Development Network

terrainformahouse

Photo by Marcel Schoenhardt

This week Terra Informer Shelley Jodoin interviewed Joshua Bénard, a sustainable housing project manager with the Alberta Rural Development Network (ARDN). They discuss ARDN’s aim to create housing that is both sustainable and affordable.

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Alberta Rural Development Network

This week Shelley Jodoin interviewed housing project manager of Alberta Rural Development Network (ARDN), Joshua Bénard.  They discuss how ARDN works with provincial universities and colleges, rural communities, and other organizations to create sustainable housing. You can check out the ARDN’s website here.

Headlines

International Compost Awareness Week, May 7th- 13th

If you live in Edmonton, the city has Compost S’cool starting May 13th, from 10 am to 4 pm on weekends and holidays until Labour day. Compost S’cool is a program meant to help you start your own composting operation; whether it be a large backyard bin or a small bin of worms. You can find them on location between the John Janzen Nature Centre and Fort Edmonton Park, and check out the Facebook page here. 

For listeners not in Edmonton – check out your city’s website or check out the compost council of Canada’s website here for more information. 

Biomimicry Alberta Workshop: Summer Series 2017

Biomimicry in this context is drawing inspiration from the natural world for example, the beak of kingfisher birds have provided the blueprint for more aerodynamic designs in trains. Learn more here. 

The third annual Alberta Biomimicry Workshop will be happening on the University of Alberta campus on June 24 and 25.  Registration is $150 but there is a discounted rate for students! You can find more information here. 

Oil spill busting technology gets $1.7M federal funding boost

UAlberta’s Ingenuity Lab developing nanotech mesh that pulls oil out of water, then releases it so it can be reused. Read the article here.

UAlberta named one of Canada’s greenest employers for ninth year in a row

University recognized for employee programs, innovative facilities. Read the article here.

 

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The Politics of Science

Art Poskanzer

Photo by Art Poskanzer

This week on Terra Informa Lauren Carter spoke with Kate Gibbs, the Executive Director of Evidence for Democracy, about a report she co-authored that surveyed over 400 government scientists about their funding capacity, their freedom to communicate their research, and the outsourcing of government research to external non-Ministry professionals. Then we go to the archives of Science Faction where they discuss three possible ways the world could end.

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Oversight at Risk: The State of Government Science in British Columbia

Is B.C. governmental science well-funded and openly communicated? We interviewed Katie Gibbs, the Executive Director of Evidence for Democracy to give us the run-down. The report surveyed over 400 government scientists about their funding capacity, their freedom to communicate their research and the outsourcing of government research to external professionals. We also asked her about the March for Science that she spoke at on March 22, 2017.

Science Faction: The End

“The End” of Science Faction has arrived! For our 8th and final show, hear from three great Canadian researchers, planetary scientist Dr. Alan Hildebrand, immunologist Dr. Matthew Miller, and climate champion Merran Smith, talk about three possible ways the world could end and how we can avoid TEOTWAWKI (a.k.a. the end of the world as we know it).

What’s Happening

Women in Renewable Energy Networking Meetup- May 8th 2017

Calling all women interested in Renewable Energy! On May 8th, there will be a networking meetup for the new Edmonton Chapter of the organization WiRE, or Women In Renewable Energy. This discussion will focus on building networks for jobs and roles in the renewable energy sector.  All women working in a field related to renewable energy are invited, as are students and developing professionals who are looking for perspectives on joining the renewable energy sector. This event is for women only.

The Guest speaker at this event will be Brandy J. Burdeniuk, an industrial designer, entrepreneur, and founding partner of EcoAmmo Sustainable Consulting, a green building consulting firm.

This event is free to attend, and will be at the Mosaic Centre (Alberta’s First net-zero commercial Building) 2003 91 St SW, Edmonton, AB T6X 1A2. For more information, please check out WiRE’s information page

University of Alberta School of Business, Energy, and Environment– discussing Alberta’s new carbon tax- May 18 2017

Then, for those of you who want to know what’s going on inside the minds of oil and gas business leaders: On May 18th, the University of Alberta School of Business, Energy, and Environment will be hosting an event to discuss the effect Alberta’s new carbon tax will have on business. The Carbon Tax was implemented with the goal of providing financial incentives for businesses and households to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Speakers will include:
Stephen Clark, the Chief Financial Officer of Mullen Group, an oil and gas wells drilling company;
Cam Mitchell, the Vice President in Data Analysis and Forecasting for Solution 105, an energy management consulting company;
Jeju Varghese, the Director of Canadian Operations for Rig Systems, with National Oilwell Varco, a multinational oil corporation based out of Houston Texas.

The event will be moderated by Andrew Leach, an Assistant Professor at the University of Alberta School of Business

The event will occur from 4:30pm to 6:30pm at The Matrix Hotel, 10640 100 Ave NW
Edmonton, Alberta

The cost is $30 per person.
Please RSVP by May 15, 2017.

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There is no Planet B

Earthrise

This week we explore the origins of Earth Day with an ecobabble that spans the decades from 1970 to the March for Science of 2017. Next, we’re revisiting an interview with Chris Hadfield from our archives.

 

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Earth Day: Cause For Protest or Celebration?

Lauren Carter and Dylan Hall hit the streets to find out what the public thinks about Earth Day and the March for Science. You’ll be hearing some of those interviews throughout this ecobabble on the origins of Earth Day.  Earth Day began as the environmentalist movement was making its voice heard with protests and educational teach-ins. Today, Earth Day is celebrated across the planet, although its focus has largely turned from political issues to small-scale individual action. Find out how this transition happened, and how the March for Science is changing that with this ecobabble produced by Lauren Carter.

Chris Hadfield Interview From 2013

Most of us will never know what it’s like being in space. We’ve all seen the pictures of that familiar glowing green and blue orb from the viewpoint of a spaceship. We have rich imaginations and age-long fascinations of what could be out there beyond the sky. But what does it smell like? What does it really feel like to be out there? From the 2013 archives, our own Matt Hirji talked to Commander Chris Hadfield about questions like these.

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Photo by NASA