Thursday, 29 October 2015

First Nations Power Authority of Saskatchewan


For many years if you wanted hydro-electrical power in our province, you needed a connection to SaskPower’s province-wide grid. But now circumstances have changed.

Rapid advancement in renewable energy, battery storage technologies, and micro grid options provide individuals and communities with an opportunity to generate power themselves or at least increase reliability and lower power bills. Economics are changing too, and the self-generation costs per unit of electricity (the kilowatt-hour or kWh) with solar panels are at parity with retail power costs from SaskPower.

First Nations Power Authority is leading the way as it assists First Nations communities to meet their own energy needs, placing First Nations’ interests front and centre.

First Nations Power Authority of Saskatchewan
Communities and power project development companies approach SaskPower with their needs and proposals, but there isn’t always a good fit between the two perspectives. “Developers have a lot of different irons in the fire across Canada, North America, and globally,” says Ian Loughran, Vice-President of Projects and Business Development for First Nations Power Authority (FNPA) of Saskatchewan. “For a typical power project development company, the close rate on large-scale projects (over 10 megawatts) is about 5 to 10 per cent. The successful projects typically cover the business development costs of all the others.”

This approach doesn’t always work for local communities, such as First Nations reserves. They have very specific needs and requirements but generally don’t have the expertise to identify valid options and have limited control over the final decision.

First Nations Power Authority of Saskatchewan (FNPA) was established to assist First Nations communities to identify and address their energy needs and help validate projects before they are sent to SaskPower for consideration.

FNPA has two primary objectives:
1. To provide economic development opportunities in larger-scale power projects; and
2. To ensure lower energy prices for First Nations people and their communities through conservation, energy efficiency, and self-generation options.

They do this by providing expertise and building relationships between interested parties (First Nations community members, SaskPower and other utilities, industry partners, developers, installers, and construction companies).

FNPA also explores renewable and clean energy generation options – such as flare gas – to assist with lowering Saskatchewan’s intense carbon footprint. Many First Nations communities align with this direction as it is closely linked with traditional teachings about respecting Mother Earth.

In establishing FNPA, Saskatchewan is following the lead of Ontario and Alberta:
1. The Aboriginal Energy Partnerships Program supports the participation of First Nations and Metis communities in Ontario’s energy sector by helping to fund community energy planning and renewable energy project development as well as building energy knowledge and skills related to energy projects. Wataynikaneyap Power is a First Nations-led transmission company that intends to connect remote First Nations communities currently serviced by diesel generation.
2. Green Arrow Renewable Energy Corporation in Alberta is owned by Montana First Nation. Its goal is to assist First Nations communities in assessing the feasibility of renewable energy projects on reserve lands.


FNPA Membership 
Established in 2012, FNPA has two types of memberships. It provides annual general memberships to entities wholly owned by First Nations, including economic development corporations, bands, and tribal councils. FNPA assists its general members in establishing a vision, auditing their energy needs, and obtaining financing.

Annual industry memberships are available to all other organizations or corporations interested in working with Aboriginal business interests in the power industry. FNPA can leverage industry members for advice and information on the latest technology while in turn providing developers with a heads-up on SaskPower’s current and future priorities.

How It Works 
FNPA has a 10-year Master Agreement with SaskPower that sets out how the two parties will work together and provides FNPA with access to the crown corporation’s Master Supply Plan. In addition, FNPA meets with SaskPower’s Generation Supply Planning Team and executive management group on a regular basis.

As a result, FNPA is aware of SaskPower’s current objectives and knows when the time is right to submit a particular utility-scale project. For example, developers have been eager to promote solar projects due to their success in Ontario, but SaskPower hasn’t been ready to consider solar projects at this time.

A process is also in place for FNPA to submit unsolicited proposals with various power generation types.

At present FNPA has one gigawatt of power projects in various stages of development. These projects are established in four different ways:
1. SaskPower provides them with a set-aside or project to work on;
2. A developer approaches FNPA with a project and, if it looks promising, they try to match it with a First Nations community;
3. A First Nations community, often with a developer in mind, comes to FNPA with a project and asks for help in making it happen; and
4. FNPA identifies opportunities and looks for First Nations and industry partners.

At the community level, residents and community buildings can take advantage of SaskPower’s Net Metering Program. FNPA is leading two solar power generation projects to install solar PV systems at two schools in northern Saskatchewan – Father Megret Elementary School in Hatchet Lake Denesuline First Nation and Father Gamache Memorial School in Fond du Lac Denesuline First Nation. Both projects are generously funded through multiple funding partners, including Western Economic Diversification Canada, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada’s Community Opportunity Readiness Program and ecoENERGY for Aboriginal and Northern Communities Program, and Bullfrog Power.

It is anticipated that the projects will significantly lower the schools’ energy bills. Results will be measured in order to determine how well the solar option works in more northerly communities. “FNPA isn’t specifically mandated to provide green energy, but it makes a lot of sense,” Ian says. “It aligns with First Nations’ beliefs, provides more reliability options, and is an increasingly important source of energy for lowering our carbon footprint.”

Preparing for the Future
FNPA is eager to develop not only utility-scale projects but also community energy projects that will help remote communities and families with limited incomes to reduce their energy costs.

They are working on a sustainable funding model to decrease dependency on government funding through the implementation of successful projects. FNPA hopes to become self-sustaining in the next five years and, once that goal is achieved, will use the revenue from large-scale industrial projects to help fund community energy projects.

A total of 70% of FNPA’s staff are Aboriginal and they are working hard to develop credibility with First Nations community members and their leadership. They recognize that First Nations communities have many competing needs and that economic development is of primary importance. Leading the team at FNPA are CEO, Leah Nelson Guay, and Chair of the Board of the Directors, Tribal Chief Felix Thomas. Both have contributed significantly to the vision, direction, and progression of the organization.

Distributed vs. Centralized Energy
Ian Loughran believes that the trend towards distributed renewable energy will move rapidly over the next decade with the introduction of increasingly powerful storage batteries, both for the residential and commercial sectors (think Tesla Power Wall) and for utility scale power storage (e.g. vanadium flow batteries). District energy projects, solar-co-operatives, and wind farms will allow communities to choose greener options and generate their own power.

Will communities be able to separate themselves completely from the centralized grid? Do they need to? Should they? These questions are still up in the air.

Many experts believe that a centralized grid is essential to ensure stability and reliability. Others foresee the potential of a low-carbon distributed energy sector led by civil society.

First Nations Power Authority has the potential to lead the way in Saskatchewan through its community/developer partnerships and its close relationship to SaskPower. FNPA is also expanding its reach into Alberta, Nunavut, and the Northwest Territories.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

EcoSask News, October 27, 2015

Untitled

Upcoming Events
Greater Sage Grouse Webinar, Oct. 27
Kayla Balderson Burak will discuss habitat selection, movements, and nest success of translocated greater sage grouse during a noon-hour webinar on Oct. 27. Register online.

Hiking in the Wakaw Hills, Nov. 1
Cliff Speer will be leading a Saskatoon Nordic Club fall hike in the Wakaw Hills on Nov. 1. The hike will be from 9:45 am – 4 pm with an option to attend a fall supper in Wakaw afterwards. Contact Cliff at 306-653-5693 to register and arrange to carpool.

Black-Footed Ferrets, Nov. 1
Kimberly Epp will give a talk on threatened and endangered prairie species with a focus on the rare Black-Footed Ferret from 1-2:30 pm, Nov. 1, at Wild Birds Unlimited. Everyone will have a chance to hold Sammy the Ferret.

Passive House Open Days, Nov. 13-15
Two homes currently under construction in or near Saskatoon are participating in the Passive House Open Days, Nov. 13-15.


Gone Wild for Wildlife, Nov. 14
Gone Wild for Wildlife, the annual educational fundraiser for the Wildlife Rehabilitation Society of Saskatchewan, will be held at Prairieland Park from 10 am to 5 pm, Nov. 14. There will be live wildlife, educational booths, fun and informative lectures, a silent auction as well as children's activities such as face painting, birdhouse assembly and painting, juggling school, something bouncy and much, much more.

Don’t miss the owl pellet dissection supported by an EcoFriendly Sask Action Grant.

Saskatoon Nature Society Field Trips
Nov. 8, 8:30 am- 4 pm – Blackstrap Lake Birding
Nov. 15, 1:30-5 pm – Pike Lake Birding
Check the Saskatoon Nature Society’s website for full details (e.g. some trips require rubber boots, others will be cancelled if the weather is bad).

A full list of upcoming events can be found on the EcoFriendly Sask Calendar.


News
2016 Saskatchewan Birds Calendar
The 2016 Saskatchewan Birds Calendar can now be purchased online.

Prairie Conservation & Endangered Species Conference
Registration is now open for the Prairie Conservation & Endangered Species conference in Saskatoon, Feb. 16-18.

Car-Free Month Has Lasting Impact
In 2013, 4300 residents of a neighbourhood in Suwon, South Korea, parked their cars and used other methods of transportation for a full month. The city invested over $10 million in the endeavour, widening sidewalks, turning vacant lots into gardens, providing biking lessons. Two years later, the experiment appears to have paid off. There are fewer cars and the drivers have been mandated to go slower. Real estate has appreciated in value, and there are 6,000 bikes for public rental.

EcoSask News is a weekly round-up of local news and events. Email us if you have items you would like us to include. 

You can follow EcoFriendly Sask by liking us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, or by email (top right corner).

Thursday, 22 October 2015

What Can I Recycle? Tips for Doing It Right


We want to do the right thing, but we’re not always sure what we can and can’t recycle. We’re good at the generalities, but the specifics can be tricky. For example, we know we can recycle plastic, but what kinds of plastic?

Staff from Environmental & Corporate Initiatives, City of Saskatoon, provided the following useful tips.

No Sorting Required
Loraas Recycle (curbside recycling) and Cosmpolitan Industries (multi-unit recycling) sort the recycling, making it easier for us to use as we don’t have to separate out the different materials. Much of the sorting is done by machine, but it does require some manual sorting. It’s helpful to keep that in mind when putting items in your recycling bin or cart. (Here’s a video showing how it works.)

Make sure that items are clean. They don’t have to be squeaky clean, but you don’t want to endanger workers’ health by failing to remove food residue or other contaminants.

Don’t try and recycle dangerous items, such as propane tanks, needles, or other hazardous waste. They’ll have to stop the line to remove the item and that costs time and money.

Don’t bag your recycling. If you do, it may be tossed in the trash and sent to the landfill. Loose recyclables can be tossed directly into your cart or bin. It is a good idea to bag plastics and shredded paper.

Don’t try to recycle anything smaller than a credit card (e.g. paper or bottle caps). It will fall through the cracks in the machine and end up in the garbage.


Paper 
If you can rip it, you can recycle it.

Flatten cardboard boxes to make more room in your bin. You don’t need to remove tape or labels.

Empty cereal, cookie, and cracker boxes can be recycled (remove liners).

You can recycle paper egg cartons.

Pizza boxes can be recycled but need to be clean. Remove any lumps of food or tear off and recycle the clean sections.

Place shredded paper in a clear, tied plastic bag.

Disposable paper cups can’t be recycled as the recycling companies can’t handle the large volume.

Don’t try to recycle food-contaminated paper, diapers, or dirty napkins and paper towels.

Plastic 
Plastic bags: if you can stretch it, you can recycle it. A paper label on the bag is okay.

Zip lock bags can be recycled; so can clean plastic wrap. Just put it all into one plastic bag and tie it.

Plastic containers labelled #1-7 can be recycled. That includes everything from shampoo bottles to laundry jugs. Even some plastic flower pots can be recycled.

Clean soup, juice, and drink boxes can be recycled.

Lids from disposable coffee cups can be recycled.

Styrofoam can’t be recycled in Saskatoon (see below for other options).

Plastic toys and Tupperware can’t be recycled.

Metal
Foil pie plates and used aluminum foil can be recycled; just make sure they’re clean.

Metal cans can be recycled. This includes aluminum trays and pie plates, pet food cans, and frozen juice cans.

Jar lids can be recycled.

Outdoor lawn furniture can’t be recycled.

Glass 
Glass bottles and jars can be placed in the recycling bin, but they are currently being stockpiled rather than recycled (they hope to be able to use it eventually, e.g. as road fill). Glass frequently breaks and only large glass pieces will be stockpiled.

Take wine, spirit, and beer bottles to the SARCAN Recycling Depot. They won’t get broken, and you’ll get your deposit back.

Pyrex or dishware glass, windows and mirrors, ceramics and porcelain can’t be recycled. Try taking them to a charity shop instead.


Other Options
The Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council’s website helps you find the best places to recycle almost anything from your home and workplace.

London Drugs accepts styrofoam, non-rechargeable batteries, fluorescent light bulbs, plastic folders, small appliances, and recordable media or media storage devices (e.g. VHS tapes).

The SARCAN Recycling Depot accepts beverage containers, paint, electronics, and milk containers.

The City of Saskatoon accepts household hazardous waste once a month at the SaskTel Centre from 9 am - 3:30 pm.

The City has two compost depots open from May to November where you can drop off your unbagged leaves, grass clippings, and non-elm tree trimmings. The Green Cart program is a subscription program that offers curbside collection of unbagged leaves, grass, and other small yard waste for a seasonal fee. Registration for 2016 will open soon.

The City of Saskatoon and Loraas Recycle offers free education programs for schools, community groups, and anyone else who is interested. Loraas Education Room includes interactive touch screen games, trivia, and more.

Photo credits: iStock_000013321780, iStock_000073715973, iStock_000015889240

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

EcoSask News, October 20, 2015

chickadee

Upcoming Events
Lungs, Oct. 15-25 
Lungs, a Live Five theatre production, is playing Thursdays to Sundays, Oct. 15-25. The play examines parenting in the 21st century: “Is it irresponsible to bring another person into an overcrowded world that seems doomed?”

Zoo Society Special Meeting, Oct. 28 
The Saskatoon Zoo Society is calling a special general meeting for 7 pm, Oct. 28, to vote to pursue an amalgamation with the Saskatoon Zoo Foundation. The Foundation was formed to seek funding for capital projects. It has become evident that in order to increase funding, they must demonstrate the educational value of the project as demonstrated by the Society’s activities.

SK Energy Management Task Force, Nov. 4 
The Saskatchewan Energy Management Task Force hosts monthly breakfast meetings for professionals with an interest in the effective use of energy and its related aspects. The meetings start at 7 am at the Confederation Inn. The speaker on Nov. 4 is Karen Mallory, providing an overview of ongoing projects at Sustainable Development Technology Canada.

CFZ Night of Action, Nov. 5
Climate Friendly Zone Saskatchewan is hosting an evening workshop on November 5 to help participants develop the tools they need to take action on the issues they care about. Topics will include: using social media, municipal council 101, and not-your-parents letter-writing.

Burrowing Owl Fundraiser, Nov. 7 (Moose Jaw) 
William James will host a game and hypnotist show as a fundraiser for the SK Burrowing Owl Interpretive Centre at 5:30 pm, Nov. 7, in Moose Jaw.

A full list of upcoming events can be found on the EcoFriendly Sask Calendar

News 
Have your say on the City of Saskatoon’s Growth Plan (includes an online survey)

A new app lets you buy, sell, and trade your way to reuse

A former mine is now the first large-scale solar project in Western Canada to use tracking technology

Better buses make a better city

EcoSask News is a weekly round-up of local news and events. Email us if you have items you would like us to include. 

You can follow EcoFriendly Sask by liking us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, or by email (top right corner).

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

EcoSask News, October 13, 2015

autumn leaves

Upcoming Events
Great-Horned Owl, Oct. 18 
Greg Fenty, Saskatoon Zoo Society, will give a short presentation and introduce Spirt, the great-horned owl, at 1 pm, Oct. 18, at Wild Birds Unlimited.

Falcon Hunt, Oct. 18 
The trip to watch Dr. Lynn Oliphant’s falcons catch their prey was cancelled on Oct. 4 due to bad weather. It has been rescheduled for Oct. 18. Meet at Wild Birds Unlimited at 4 pm.

Reducing Fence-Related Wildlife Collisions, Oct. 20
PCAP-SK is presenting a webinar about reducing fence-related wildlife collisions in Grasslands National Park at 3 pm, Oct. 20.

Be a Smarter Shopper, Oct. 20
The Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council will offer tips for reducing waste and shopping locally in winter at 7 pm, Oct. 20, at the Frances Morrison Library as part of the Sustainable Speaker Series.

Urban Permaculture Film, Oct. 21
Permaculture Saskatchewan and the Saskatoon Food Council are showing the film Urban Permaculture: Sustainable Strategies for Urban Living at 7 pm, Oct. 21.

Reflections Art Festival, Oct. 23-25
The Saskatchewan Wildlife Art Association is holding Reflections Art Festival, their annual wildlife art festival, at Prairieland Park from Oct. 23-25.

Cross-Canada Canoe Odyssey, Oct. 26 (Regina)
Nathalie Brunet will show the film Cross-Canada Canoe Odyssey and describe her participation at Nature Regina’s meeting on Oct. 26.

A full list of upcoming events can be found on the EcoFriendly Sask Calendar.

Photo credit: Terri Jackson

Kids in Nature Grant Program
The Saskatoon Nature Society is now taking applications for their Kids in Nature Grant. This grant was established to strengthen existing programs and encourage new initiatives that connect youth in the Saskatoon area with nature. The Society has set aside approximately $2,000 for this year’s Kids in Nature grant. The application deadline is December 31, 2015. Information and application forms are available on the Saskatoon Nature Society website.

News
"Really Meewasin? This is disappointing. . . .You are better than this and you have a chance to prove it by protecting the swale from any development - roads included."

Plan now for a zero-waste Hallowe’en.

Hillside Festival, Guelph, not only recycles and composts, it also washes dishes and cutlery and has a water wagon provided by the city.

Lawns are the largest irrigated crop in the US - but please, folks, plastic lawns aren't an improvement - grow vegetables!

EcoSask News is a weekly round-up of local news and events. Email us if you have items you would like us to include. 

You can follow EcoFriendly Sask by liking us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, or by email (top right corner).

Thursday, 8 October 2015

Vereco Homes: Affordable and Energy-Efficient


A luxurious home that will save you money and be good for the environment – is that really possible? Ronn Lepage was convinced it was – and he set out to prove it.

Vereco Homes are designed to provide customers with a super comfortable home without spending more than they’ll save on utility bills. “Your mortgage will be a little higher, but your utility bills will be lower,” Ronn says, “and you get a super comfortable home.”

Regina’s Conservation House, designed by Dr. Rob Dumont and built in 1977, is believed to be one of the first conservation demonstration houses constructed in North America. Dumont established that in an average Saskatchewan home 60% of the energy is used for space heating, 20% to supply hot water, and 20% goes to lights and appliances.

Following the energy-efficient principles established by Dumont, Vereco Homes applies a three-tiered strategy to designing energy-efficient homes:
1. Reduce how much energy you use;
2. Reuse energy where you can; and
3. Finally, replace energy with greener energy.
Here’s how it works.

Take Advantage of Passive Solar Heat
Place your house carefully and install windows in the right places and as much as 35-40% of your home’s space heating requirements can come from the sun.

Braden and Ali Turnquist have a brand-new Vereco home on Victoria Avenue. The house was built on the north side of the lot with large windows on the south side. Sunshine fills the house on cold winter days while built-in awnings provide shade during the summer. 32% of the Turnquist home’s space heating requirements are solar and free.

Trees and fewer windows on the other sides of the house help guarantee that the house will be warmed by the sun in winter but remain cool in the summer.

Make the House a Little Smaller
An efficient design with multi-functional rooms and minimal hallway space keeps the house smaller and cheaper to heat.

A smaller house with fewer interior walls employing standard length cuts also saves on construction costs.

Nine-foot ceilings on the main floor of the Turnquist’s home make the space feel bigger than it really is, especially with all the large windows.

Braden and Ali used to live in a 1,200 square foot townhouse that is very close in size to their new home (almost 1,500 square feet). But that’s not how it worked out in real life. “There was 700 square feet upstairs,” Braden explains. “But we lived downstairs where there was only 500 square feet because of the garage.”


Insulate Well
“We used R40 insulation in the walls, R80 in the attic, and R20 insulation under the basement slab,” says Ronn, describing the Turnquist home. “It’s like living in a giant sleeping bag.”

The insulation is on the outside so the heat spreads evenly around the house. There are no drafts or chilly corners.

The insulation also soundproofs the home. “We don’t hear anything that goes on outside,” Braden says.

Vereco recommends Zone D (Arctic) windows with different coatings depending on where they are located. The walls are thick, but the windows on the south side of the house are flared to let in more light.

Install an Energy-Efficient Heating System
Ronn recommends purchasing the most energy-efficient heating system possible. Electric resistance heat is cheapest, or you can go with a hydronic (in-floor heating) system.

None of Vereco’s homes have air conditioning – it’s just not necessary.

Minimize the Cost of Heating Water
There are several steps you can take to minimize the amount of energy (and money) invested in supplying your home with hot water:

1. Low-flow showerheads and low-flow taps reduce hot water usage by 40%. A slightly smaller bath tub saves an additional 25%.

2. Insulating the hot water heater and the connecting pipes helps prevent heat loss.

3. Using cold water when washing clothes is another energy-saver.

Choose Energy-Efficient Lights and Appliances
LED lights are energy efficient and supply a nice light.

Lots of windows (the Turnquist home has a small window in the walk-in closet as well as in the shower) provide natural light, minimizing the need for artificial light.

It’s important to purchase Energy Star appliances, but you also want to make sure that they have a good rating. “Your fridge is working all the time so focus on that,” Ronn says.

If you do a lot of cooking and baking, keep in mind that a Vereco home is very well insulated and will warm up. An induction cooktop generates less heat. Braden and Ali chose to install a double oven. They use the small top oven most of the time, which generates very little heat.

Reuse Energy
Vereco homes are airtight so you need to ensure a good flow of air at all times. The air entering the house in winter is cold, but a heat recovery ventilation system will pre-heat the air coming into the house using the heat from the air exiting the house.

You can also install a drain water heat recovery system so that energy from waste shower water going out of the house is used to heat the water that is going into use.


Use Renewable Energy
Using alternative energy sources can be an expensive way to save energy so this is one of the last options in Vereco’s energy-saving toolkit. All Vereco homes have conduit built in so that the home can easily be outfitted with solar electric and solar thermal systems in the future. Ronn advises Vereco clients to monitor their energy use for a year before they install alternative energy systems. “They’ll probably be surprised how little energy their Vereco home uses,” Ronn says, “and then they can properly size their investment in alternative energy.”

The price of solar panels has been going down, and Ian Loughran, an advisor to Vereco, believes that next summer will be a good time to put in solar. With net metering, solar electric panels equate to financial savings.

The Turnquists plan to install solar panels next summer and all the conduits are in place to make that an easy process.

The Vereco Option
Vereco’s energy-saving principles balance energy savings and cost. “We implement many energy-saving techniques,” Ronn says, “but always keep an eye on balancing the costs with the savings.” 

Vereco Homes provides a wide variety of design options, from large to small to very tiny and will work with you to develop a design that meets your family’s needs.

Photos of the Turnquist home were taken by Braden Turnquist

See Also:
Passive House: Comfortable, Energy-Efficient Homes
Solar Energy for your Home
Energy-Efficient LED Lighting

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

EcoSask News, October 6, 2015

fall color

Upcoming Events
Energy Talks, Oct. 8 
Patrick Byrns will be talking about researching, designing, and building an electric truck that is now used in the mining industry from 6:30-7:30 pm, Oct. 8, in Engineering 2C01, U of S.

Campus Sustainability Week, Oct. 13-16
The University of Saskatchewan’s Campus Sustainability Week runs from Oct. 13-16 and includes a sustainability expo, campus tours, a fresh food market, and films.

The Declining Health of our Oceans, Oct. 15
Attila Chandy will discuss the decisive influence the oceans have on all life on our planet at the Saskatoon Nature Society meeting on Oct. 15.

Ice-Cycling on Campus Workshop, Oct. 15
The U of S Office of Sustainability is hosting a winter cycling workshop at 5 pm, Oct. 15.

Multi-Generational Green Home Open House, Oct. 17
Visit a multi-generational smart green home built by Vereco at an open house from 1-4 pm, Oct. 17.

Household Hazardous Waste Day, Oct. 17
The City of Saskatoon accepts household hazardous waste once a month at the SaskTel Centre from 9 am - 3:30 pm. The next Household Hazardous Waste Day is October 17.

Field Trips
Young Naturalists
Nov. 7, 1-2:30 pm – Bird Feeder Workshop
Dec. 5, 1- 3 pm – Paper Making Workshop
Space is limited; register early to avoid disappointment.

Golden Eagles
Oct. 22, 9 am – Gabriel Dumont Park
Retirees and partners who are interested in birds and the natural world are invited to participate in Golden Eagle field trips.

Other Saskatoon Nature Society Field Trips
Oct. 17, 9 am-4 pm – Broderick Reservoir Birding
Oct. 18, 1:30-6 pm – Radisson and Redberry Lakes Birding
Check the Saskatoon Nature Society’s website for full details (e.g. some trips require rubber boots, others will be cancelled if the weather is bad).

A full list of upcoming events can be found on the EcoFriendly Sask Calendar

backlit fall leaves

News
“Every year, over 90 million litres of diesel are shipped by truck, barge and air to remote communities in Canada to power their local energy systems. But the growing economic cost and environmental impact of importing such vast amounts of diesel to these communities are unsustainable.” Participants at the Renewables in Microgrids conference addressed the systemic barriers to introducing renewable community energy projects.

“Running two expensive major roadways across the swale close to each other seems not only unnecessary but wasteful. I urge decision makers to choose a path that minimizes the impact on our valuable natural areas such as the swale.”

A proposed diamond mine near Prince Albert would drain aquifers and destroy 9200 acres of forest.

"We also can't rest on our laurels if we just recycle our goods. Because most of the environmental pollution is caused by manufacturing, we need to ask ourselves if we really need that convenient, disposable product in the first place….Reducing is always for the best

EcoSask News is a weekly round-up of local news and events. Email us if you have items you would like us to include. 

You can follow EcoFriendly Sask by liking us on Facebook, following us on Twitter, or by email (top right corner).