sustainability

Workers and the Future of Energy

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Photo by Daniel Jones on Flickr

This week on Terra Informa, Andrea Wiebe met with Lliam Hildebrand of the Iron and Earth Organization about their work advocating for oil and gas development to incorporate more renewable energy. They discussed how oil and gas sector workers can adapt to and support the low carbon transition. 

Download episode now. 

UCP STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT

Following the cancellation of the provincial carbon tax in June, the Alberta government is seeking feedback and conducting engagement on its new plan to cut greenhouse gases. Named the Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction Program, the government is meeting with over 150 stakeholders, including representatives of the oil and gas sector, mining, and agriculture sector, among others. The public is also invited to weigh in on this plan, through an online survey. 

Online survey to provide feedback: Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction Engagement

Global News: Alberta seeks feedback on greenhouse gas emissions reduction plan

Global News: Alberta makes it official: Bill passed and proclaimed to kill carbon tax

CBC PROTEST

On Wednesday, July 17th, environmental groups around the country are planning to demonstrate outside CBC headquarters. Demonstrators are asking that the CBC host a federal leaders’ debate on the climate crisis and a green new deal. With over 11 million Canadians tuning in to the leaders’ debates, environmental groups are demonstrating to highlight the importance of informing the public about each candidate’s strategy to address the climate emergency. As the CBC finalizes plans for election coverage, demonstrators from coast to coast will be gathering outside studios during the six o’clock news to encourage the broadcaster to host this debate. Edmontonians interested in this demonstrating can visit the CBC studios in City Centre Mall at 10062 102 Ave.

Facebook page: Edmonton calls on the CBC to Change the Debate

Transmountain Pipeline Expansion Updates

The Transmountain Expansion Project has been the centre of a large debate about economic development and environmental conservation, as well as a discussion about the responsibilities of project proponents and the rights of affected communities.

Vancouver Sun: Conservationists file legal challenge to Trans Mountain pipeline reapproval

CBC News: First Nations launch new court challenge to Trans Mountain pipeline

CBC News: Environmental groups file new challenge to Trans Mountain pipeline expansion approval

Global News: Several B.C. First Nations launch legal challenge of re-approved Trans Mountain pipeline

Download program log here. 

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Soakin’ Up The Sun With Solar Power

33762667904_71bea17c2b_oPhoto by Jorden Esseron on Flickr

This week on Terra Informa, we discuss solar energy, including topics such as the definition of solar, how it works, the pros and cons to solar,  and who the solar power leaders are around the world.

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One of Canada’s Largest Solar Installations on Vancouver Island Built by T’Sou-ke Nation

Terra Informer Steve Anderson spoke to T’Sou-ke Chief Gordon Planes and project manager Andrew Moore about the importance of collective decision-making and planning for energy efficiency when switching to renewables.

Inspiration on How to Engage with a Changing Energy Landscape

Terra Informer Dylan Hall shared stories about thoughts and questions around solar energy. 

What’s Happening

 Renewable Electricity Program Cancellation and Solar in Alberta

Alberta’s Renewable Electricity Program, instituted by the previous NDP government as a competitive bidding program for commercial-scale energy generation, has officially been cancelled by the UCP leadership as of June 10, 2019. Premier Jason Kenney made a campaign promise to fix the program, which operated three rounds of public auctions in December 2017 and 2018, guaranteed operators a minimum electricity price, and secured over 1,300 MW of renewable electricity for the Alberta grid. The UCP says the existing contracts from these first three auctions will be honoured, but the fourth round of auctions anticipated in 2019 will not take place.

Renewable Electricity Program

Edmonton Convention Center Integrated Solar

On Thursday June 27, the City of Edmonton announced it will be upgrading the Edmonton Convention Center to replace about half of the 696 glass panels that form the buildings sloped atrium, with transparent solar panels. The announcement is exciting news as this is one of the largest integrated-solar designs in Canada, which means solar panels are built right into the design of the building, rather than as a separate ground or roof top-array.

Edmonton Journal: Largest ‘building-integrated’ solar cell installation in country coming to Edmonton Convention Centre

Smith Solar Farm and River Valley Rezoning

The City of Edmonton has sent the E.L Smith Solar Farm back to administration and Epcor for further engagement and review on June 19th. The E.L Smith Solar Farm is an approximately 10 MW electricity generation project proposed by Epcor to be developed on 54 acres of land owned by the company and located south of the existing E.L Smith water treatment plant, in the Edmonton River Valley.  The $26 million solar farm is intended to help power the water treatment plant and construction includes the installation of up to 45,000 solar panels, the connection of these panels to the treatment plant and the electrical grid, the removal of select trees, and fencing around the plant.

Edmonton Journal: ‘Go elsewhere’: Epcor’s 23-hectare river valley solar farm plan faces stiff opposition

CBC: Edmonton council puts river valley solar farm proposal on hold

EPCOR: Project Overview

 

Download program log here. 

 

The Less-Than-Fabulous Footprint of Fashion

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Photo by Emily Orpin on Flickr

This week on Terra Informa Dylan Hall ventures into the world of fashion. Dylan caught up with Jess Montgomery at the 2019 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences held at the University of British Columbia campus. Montgomery holds a BFA with Distinction in Art History from Concordia University, and a MA in the History and Theory of Contemporary Art from the San Francisco Art Institute, where she wrote her thesis on the role that fashion can play in perpetuating or challenging overconsumption.

She is also the founder of a not-for-profit organization called Think the World Differently that focuses on raising awareness about the environmental impacts of clothing consumption. She also writes for Not Just a Label, a global fashion industry platform.

Dylan and Montgomery chatted about the entangled environmental and social impacts of fashion and the textile industry, fast fashion and the whole system alike. She also speaks to her tenuous personal relationship to the fashion industry as someone who loves fashion.

Download episode now. 

What’s Happening

People on the Path collaborative art installation at Found Festival in Edmonton. This by donation art installation highlights the voices of the diverse people calling for a just transition to a more sustainable and just future.

Download program log here. 

Sharing is Caring: Urban planning, entrepreneurship, and collaborative consumption

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Photo by: Matt Harrop

This week on Terra Informa, sharing is caring. We’ll be discussing what sustainability means to urban planning, getting recent planning graduate, Sonak Patel’s thoughts on shared economies, and then talking toolsharing with Graham Hansen, an entrepreneur interested in collaborative consumption. 

Download episode now.

Sustainability and Urban Planning

Terra Informer Elizabeth Dowdell speaks with Sonak Patel, a recent graduate of the school of urban and regional planning at the University of Alberta. How do city planners incorporate sustainability into the function and layout of the communities we live in? Does sustainability mean new bike lanes and green spaces, or does it go deeper? Get the answers to those questions, and some other questions about planning you might not even know you had.

For more, check out the Resilient Cities website.

Toolsharing and Collaborative Consumption

Next up, Terra Informer Sydney Karbonik interviews entrepreneur and CEO Graham Hansen. Graham’s interests in collaborative consumption and shared economies inspired him to start ToolShare, a website that connects people who have tools to people who need tools. 

Download program log here.

Menstruation Innovation

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Photo by: Conscious Lifestyle of Mine

This week on Terra Informa, we’re talking about periods. Own very own Terra Informer Sydney Karbonik recently hosted an educational event about the environmental, social and economic impact of menstrual products and what other options exist for women. The event was called Menstruation Innovation and attracted interest from about 200 people but funding was limited, so a total of 26 people were able to take part: 15 new sustainable menstruators and 6 menstruation mentors. The mentors were all diva cup veterans and helped answer questions and guide conversation. In this week’s episode, we’ve got audio from that event along with Sydney sharing some facts about periods, the environment, and what women (and men!) can do to reduce stigma, raise awareness, and practice a greener period.

Download episode now.

Headlines

This Canadian company is changing menstrual health with its reusable period products
– click here to check out Lunapads

Cloth, Cow dung, cups: How the world’s women manage their periods

Download program log here.

Environmentalism and Student Politics

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This week on Terra Informa, we’re talking about all things Sustainability. Listen in to hear what our UAlberta undergraduate SU presidential candidates, Akanksha Bhatnagar and Andre Bourgeois are thinking about the future of sustainability resources on campus, the position they are taking on the environmental issues of today, and a sneak preview of their platform. Then we’ve got you covered with this week’s environmental events. Happy Listening!

Download episode now.

Headlines

B.C. Provincial Budget Fund 1 Billion$ for climate action

The breakdown is as follows: $107 million will incentivize zero-emission vehicles and fund new charging stations. $58 million will go towards increasing energy efficiency of buildings and $18 million will help Indigenous and remote communities move to cleaner energy. Industry, who are responsible for the majority of emissions, will get $168 million in incentives to reduce their greenhouse gases. Another $299 million is allocated for initiatives that have not yet been developed or finalized, allowing new programs to get up and running quickly. $111 million over three years to fight wildfires, including response and prevention, and another $13 million for forest restoration.

There will also be:

  • A new child tax credit, giving families as much as $3400 dollars a year for children under 18.
  • Eliminate interest on provincial student loans
  • Increased support payments to extended family members who care for children when their parents can’t.
  • A raise $179/month for Foster parents
  • Increased income and disability assistance rates by $50 a month
  • And a plan to decrease poverty projected to be released in the Spring

Protecting Water in Ontario’s First ever Green Bill

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Sustainability in Classrooms and Constitutions

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That bite in the September autumn air is a tell-tale sign of back to school. This week, we dug into our archives and uncovered a 2016 piece about sustainability in Alberta schools, as well as another archive that helps us consider the pros and cons of including the environment in national constitutions.

Download episode now. 

Sustainability in Alberta Classrooms

Right now, sustainability education is becoming more and more prevalent in schools, but we still have a long way to go. In 2016, Nicole Richard and Paula Daza spoke with the teachers of Brightview Elementary School and the students of the Sustainability Club from Cochrane High School about how students can be inspired by sustainability and environment-focused education. Nicole and Paula, students from the University of Alberta, incorporated this type of community engagement into their degrees through their project called We the Future.

Good Living

When we think of a constitution we think of basic “human” rights. We, as humans, have the right to vote, the right to practice religion, the right to own property. But what about nature? Ecuador was the first country in the world to establish the rights of nature at a national level, including it in the 2008 constitution. Terra Informa’s Nicole Wiart talks to Doctor Kelly Swing of the Tiputini biodiversity station in Ecuador about how this constitutional change is great in theory, but in practice, there are a lot of hurdles to still overcome. Nicole Wiart talks to Doctor Kelly Swing.

This Week’s Headlines

St. Albert to Destroy Invasive Koi (CBC) – Click here

Meetings between Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Over the Trans Mountain Pipeline (CBC) – Click here

Smart Traffic Lights in Ottawa (National Observer) – Click here

Download program log here.

International Non-Profits at the IPCC Conference

Climate Change Conference Coming to Edmonton - March 2018

This week on Terra Informa, we bring you the first instalment of our reporting on the 2018 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Conference on Cities and Climate Change. This conference was hosted in Edmonton, AB from March 5-7th. We sent a team to dig up the best stories from the event, interviewing scientists, policy makers, and other movers-and-shakers like the Chair and Co-Chairs of the IPCC, leaders of non-governmental-organizations (NGOs), Indigenous activists, data specialists,  the mayor of Edmonton, radical youth, and more!

In this episode, we’ll be showcasing two representatives from climate-focused NGOs at the IPCC conference – the global research organization Future Earth, and a climate policy and global sustainability not-for-profit, New Climate Institute.

Download episode now.

Future Earth

Terra Informers Charlotte Thomasson and Sydney Karbonik had the pleasure of sitting down with Anne-Helene Prieur-Richard, the regional director of global organization Future Earth’s Montreal Hub, to discuss international collaboration, Future Earth as an organization, and the research they are doing to address Global Sustainability and the Anthropocene.

NewClimate Institute

Sydney Karbonik spoke with Thomas Day, a founding partner of NewClimate Institute, about the diverse and immediate benefits of taking action against climate change. NewClimate Institute is an NGO that calls for action against climate change and aids the creation of sustainable development through research and knowledge.

 

Download program log here.

Photo by: Green Energy Futures – David Dodge