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Paleobotany And Permaculture from our Archives

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Fern by Steve Bridger

We venture back to the archives to hear a piece by Dylan Hall and Whitney Caine as they talk permaculture with Kaz Haykowsky and Marcheen Makarewicz, two University of Alberta students who started a permaculture landscaping company. Then we hear a piece by Tasmia Nishat talking with Dr. Eva Koppelhus about plant spore fossils!

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Permaculture

What is this permaculture? Gardening design principles, an international social movement, eco-philosophy, or all of the above? Permaculture can be hard to pin down and the term has grown almost as many interpretations as there are practitioners.

Coined in the 1970’s by two Australians – David Holmgren and Bill Mollison – Permaculture was initially a contraction of permanent agriculture and has also come to mean permanent culture. The dual meaning of the word is fitting, as any hope of a permanent culture depends on a permanent food supply!

Kaz Haykowsky and Marcin Makarewicz are two students from the University of Alberta who have started a ‘Food Not Lawns’ business: Spruce Permaculture. Dylan Hall and Whitney Caine spoke with them about their personal interpretations of Permaculture.

If you are interested in Spruce Permaculture – Check out their website!

Paleobotany

If you were to casually mention Paleobotany in a casual conversation, you’d probably get a “paleo-what-now??”

Basically, it’s the study of plant fossils. You can also get a little more crazy and talk about palynology, the study of plant spore fossils.

Dr. Eva Koppelhus, a professor of paleobotany at the University of Alberta, thinks the subject is underrated and at least deserves some of the glory that dinosaurs receive.

Here Tasmia Nishat talks with Dr. Koppelhus about the finer points of plant fossils, and why they’re super cool.

What’s Happening

Ornithologists and bird enthusiasts alike across the country cried foul earlier this month after the federal government announced that the grey jay will not be crowned as Canada’s national bird.

For 18 months the Royal Canadian Geographical Society ran its “National Bird Project”. The undertaking included an online contest as well as public debates and consultations with bird experts. After receiving nearly 50 000 votes, the grey jay was voted number one, claiming victory over the common loon, snowy owl, and black-capped chickadee.

Despite the strong response from the public, the federal government did not sanction the project and are, “not actively considering proposals to adopt a bird as a national symbol”. The Society believes; however, that the government has not cooked their goose on the proposed idea and hopes that the project has encouraged the public to learn more about Canadian birds found across the country. 

Read more here.

Download program log here.

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Your Fracking Answers

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This week on Terra Informa, we re-air an award winning episode answering questions about fracking.

Download episode now.

All About Fracking

For some it’s the dirty energy with the dirty-sounding name. For others, it’s a revolutionary new way to provide clean energy. We’re talking about fracking. You probably feel you belong in one camp or the other—but have you thought about why? How well do you really know the actual risks and benefits of fracking? Trevor Chow-Fraser and Danielle Dolgoy realized they didn’t even know exactly what fracking is. So they researched and talked with experts who do. This story brings together the expertise of Dr. Avner Vengosh, Dr. Daniel Alessi, C. Alexia Lane and Dr. Rick Chalaturynyk. All together, we answer three big questions that we found you had about fracking.

Headline Links

—-> The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau – pm@pm.gc.ca
—-> The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc – dominic.leblanc@parl.gc.ca
—–> http://www.gazette.gc.ca/rp-pr/p1/2017/2017-06-24/html/reg2-eng.php

Fill out the listener survey for CJSR volunteers and let us know by Wednesday, July 5.

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Photo by Agencia ID

Speculating the Future and Utilizing Shame for Good

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This week on Terra Informa, we look to the archives to discuss the future of humanity and the place oil has in that future. First off we have Chris Chang-Yen Phillips with Brandon Schatz talking about science-fiction and its reflection of our current and future states. After that we talk to Jennifer Jacquet about the effectiveness of shaming in modern protest. And lastly we talk with Todd Hirsch about the future of oil in Alberta and the his view on the future economic framework of this province.

Lenses on the Future

Not everyone likes reading books about the future. Unless you already read science fiction, speculative fiction, or science-fiction as they’re collectively called, you might feel like the whole genre is just about slapstick robots and Orion slave girls. To be fair, some of it is about slapstick robots and Orion slave girls. But Sci-Fi can also teach us a lot about the way we live today. And help us imagine something different. For more on why your summer reading list should venture into the world of ansibles, hyperspace, and pigoons, Chris Chang-Yen Phillips spoke to Brandon Schatz, manager of Wizard Comics in Edmonton. 

Shaming Our Way Past Petrol

For activists trying to get all of society to shift to a renewable energy future, does it work to shame those keeping us in the past? Shame is divisive and combative. But Jennifer Jacquet thinks shame is a great tool in the activist toolkit. This academic in New York University’s department of Environmental Studies published the book Is Shame Necessary? New Uses for an Old Tool.

Alberta’s Post-Oil Future

As demand for Alberta’s oil drops lower and lower in the decades to come, how will the province’s economy change? How will we move forward and learn to prosper in new ways? For some perspective on these questions, we turned to Todd Hirsch, chief economist at ATB Financial.

Download program log here.

Photo by: Chris Yakimov (https://www.flickr.com/photos/doucy/)