This week on Terra Informa, we’re diving into the world of storytelling and literature. How can the humanities help us prepare ourselves for the environmental troubles we are facing today and into the future? What do works of fiction have to do with environmental activism?
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Shakespeare and the Ecological Crisis
Terra Informer Sofia Osborne interviews Dr. Carolyn Sale, an associate professor in the department of English and Film Studies at the University of Alberta who will be teaching a course in the upcoming fall semester on Shakespeare and the Ecological Crisis. Dr. Sale and Sofia talk about the pressing issue of our current ecological crises, why we can’t seem to do anything about it, and how the humanities can help us think about how to be primed and ready actors in the uncertain world we live in.
Storytelling as Environmental Activism
Keeping on with the literary theme, Terra Informer Sydney Karbonik reads a paper she wrote about storytelling and how it can relate to environmental activism.
A Tale of Two War Rooms
One of the campaign promises made by Jason Kenney and the United Conservative Party was the creation of an “energy war room” run by the Environment Minister and a public relations team. This “energy war room” would support work to challenge any critics of Alberta’s oil and gas industry. Intent on “[rebutting] every lie told by the green left”, Kenney has promised that this energy war room will receive 30 million dollars of funding.
This didn’t sit well with many Alberta environmentalists, and especially not with members of the group Climate Justice Edmonton. Members of Climate Justice Edmonton have started a GoFundMe page for their own war room, but this one comes with a much more environmentally-friendly agenda. With a goal of raising 30 thousand dollars, Climate Justice Edmonton will use the funds to support their work having face-to-face conversations with Albertans about the need for a just transition to 100% renewable energy, training more environmental activism organizers, and engaging in creative direct action for Indigenous rights along with climate justice.
Some specific projects on the horizon for Climate Justice Edmonton include collaborating with the Beaver Hills Warriors, a local collective of Indigenous youth, to build an Indigenous food sovereignty movement, as well as talking to and training other Albertans on how to build a Green New Deal for the province. As of May 2, 2019, Climate Justice Edmonton has raised over 14 thousand dollars towards their 30 thousand dollar goal.
Alberta Bike Swap Farewell Ride
On Saturday May 11, come on down to the Alberta Bike Swap Farewell Ride at the Edmonton Expo Center to buy, sell, or donate a bike. Consign a bike between 8am and 2:00pm, shop for a used bike from 2:30-4pm, or donate a bike any time between 8am and 4pm. Admission is $2 per person or free for kids under 12.
Founded in 2011 by Laura and Chris Grant, the Alberta Bike Swap is an annual bicycle consignment event billed as the “safe place to buy, sell, or donate” a bike. Given the time and financial commitments, this is the last year Laura and Chris will be organizing the event.
Arbor Day Tree Story Sharing
Did you know the City of Edmonton celebrates Arbor Day on May 11th? This holiday encourages individuals to plant trees, taking place at different times in different places during the spring, varying by climate and planting season. In Edmonton, grade one students began receiving conifer seedlings to plant in the early 1950s. Soon after, grade one students all over Alberta began to receive seedlings.
Do you remember where you planted your Arbor Day tree? Is it still standing by your childhood home? The City of Edmonton is encouraging people to submit their stories about what their Arbor Day trees mean to them to an interactive map of the City that identifies trees that grade one students of the past have planted.
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