Tuesday, 10 July 2018

EcoSask News, July 10, 2018

solitary male pronghorn

Upcoming Events
Household Hazardous Waste Day, July 14 (Saskatoon)
You can dispose of household hazardous waste in Saskatoon from 8 am-2:30 pm, July 14.

Go! Science, July 19 (Swift Current)
Kids in grades 1-6 are invited to attend interactive science activities presented by the Saskatchewan Science Centre from 1-4 pm, July 19, at the Swift Current Branch Library.

U of S Lunch & Learn Series, July 20 (Saskatoon)
Join the U of S Office of Sustainability from 12-1 pm, every third Friday of the month, for presentations and discussions on sustainability.

U of S The Fix, July 20 (Saskatoon)
Join the U of S Office of Sustainability and university sustainability professionals over a pint at 5 pm, every third Friday of the month, to fix some of sustainability’s most complicated issues.

Healthy Planet, Healthy Life, July 23-27 (Regina)
Kids ages 5-12 are invited to discover the technology scientists use to measure changes to the environment at the July 23-27 Regina Public Library program presented by the Saskatchewan Science Centre.

Looking Ahead
The Dammed Rivers, Oct. 1-3 (Saskatoon)
Partners FOR the Saskatchewan River Basin in collaboration with the Canadian Water Resources Association will hold their annual conference Oct. 1-3 in Saskatoon. The conference will bring together experts from many fields related to the existence of dams. Early bird registration until Aug. 31.

Environmental Law Toolkit Workshop, Oct. 2 (Toronto)
The Sustainability Network is offering a 1-day workshop on Oct. 2 in Toronto on the legal tools available to protect our air, water, land, and human health.

pronghorn and fawn

Saskatoon Nature Society Field Trips
Golden Eagles
July 19, 8 am – Gabriel Dumont Park
Aug. 9, 8 am – Shorebirds and Early Migration
Retirees and partners who are interested in birds and the natural world are invited to participate.

Other Saskatoon Nature Society Field Trips 
July 14, 10 am-1 pm – Botany Trip to Beaver Creek Conservation Area
July 22, 1:30-4:30 pm – Dragonfly Field Trip
July 28, 9 am-12 noon – Shorebird Driving Trip
Aug. 11, 8:15 am – Douglas Park Sand Dunes Hike
Check the Saskatoon Nature Society’s website for full details and updated information.

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

In the News
Nature Conservancy of Canada has purchased 335 acres of native grasslands and natural wetlands in the Upper Qu’Appelle Natural Area close to Craven. The Natural Area is home to a number of species at risk, included Sprague’s Pipit, Chestnut-collared Longspur, and Baird’s Sparrow.

Lead poisoning from fishing tackle kills loons.

5 tips for having fun birding with kids.

Want to live a more sustainable life? Individual choice isn’t enough - you have to change the system.

What trash on Everest can teach us about tackling problem waste.

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, 5 July 2018

Every One of Us Can be an Eco-Warrior

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” Mary Oliver 

Do you know an eco-warrior – someone who is putting energy and determination into protecting and preserving our natural environment? EcoFriendly Sask has the privilege of not only meeting some of Saskatchewan’s eco-warriors but of helping them out financially. They may not get their picture in the paper, but in so many different ways they are working to make this world a better place for all of us.

From January to June 2018, we distributed EcoFriendly Action Grants worth over $23,000 to 34 different groups. Here is just a sampling to demonstrate the groups' initiative, enthusiasm, and commitment.

Digging in the Dirt
The Grade 5/6 class at Englefeld School researched native trees and shrubs with fruits and berries for the birds to enjoy, voted for their favourites, and planted them in a future off-leash dog park. They planted mountain ash, wild rose, hazelnut, burning bush, gooseberry pixels, highbush cranberry, honeysuckle, elm, maple, scotch pine, spruce, birch, flat-needled spruce, and false sunflowers, attaching tags with the tree’s name and some fun facts.

20 children and 13 parents celebrated Earth Day at Redvers Public Library. They planted and learned how to take care of a flower pot and then listened to stories about bees and how to protect them.

Political Advocacy 
Stand Up for Meewasin organized a social media campaign prior to the last provincial budget to promote continued provincial funding for Meewasin Valley Authority.

Climate Justice Saskatoon is interviewing residents of coal-mining communities and preparing videos to share what they’ve learned about the social and political barriers to transitioning to renewable energy.

Less Waste – More Worms 
Kiskahikan School, Weyakwin, has purchased reusable cups, dishes, and cutlery to replace the disposable ones that were creating waste in the landfill.

The Grade 6 class at Minahik Waskahigan High School, Pinehouse Lake, spent several months learning how to compost and recycle. Worm composting was a huge success: “at some point all the students were engaged with them and we spent a lot of time examining them and how they were decomposing the food. We weren't able to get a lot of food from our classroom snacks so students would bring in food from home. I also heard from parents that students had started to talk about recycling and composting at home.” Recycling was trickier as Pinehouse Lake doesn’t have a community-wide recycling program. Every week the students filled multiple garbage bags with materials that would otherwise be sent to the dump, stored them in the classroom bathroom, and the teacher would fill up her car and take them with her when she visited Saskatoon.

Food Renew is working with local food businesses in Saskatoon to save and renew food that would otherwise be wasted and thrown away. The rescued food will be collected by volunteers and delivered to community groups and organizations who need it the most.

Organizational Support 
A crew of volunteers helped Nature Saskatchewan reshingle the monitoring station at the Last Mountain Bird Observatory – and EcoFriendly Sask helped purchase the shingles.

Every year NatureCity Festival invites the whole community to get outside and grow a little wild. Over 3,000 participants took part in over 60 events in 2018. EcoFriendly Sask is proud to have sponsored this event since its inception.

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

EcoSask News, July 3, 2018

Swainson's hawk

Blue Hill Wind Energy Project, July 10
Nature Regina is urging concerned citizens to contact the Ministry of Environment by July 10 to raise concerns about the siting of the Blue Hill Wind Energy Project. According to Nature Regina, the site chosen is in a major migration corridor close to Chaplin Lake and over 200 bird species have been sighted in this nesting and staging area.

Email, write, or call (deadline July 10, 2018): Aimann Sadik, Senior Environmental Assessment Administrator, Environmental Assessment and Stewardship Branch, Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment, 3211 Albert Street, Regina, SK S4S 5W6 Phone: (306) 787-7706 Fax: 306 787 0930 Email: environmental.assessment@gov.sk.ca

Upcoming Events 
Invasive Plants: The Urban/Rural Interface, July 5 (Saskatoon) 
Learn about invasive plants while visiting 5 Meewasin-managed properties from 6:30-9:30 pm, July 5.

Garden Patch Bioblitz, July 11 (Saskatoon) 
The Saskatoon Nature Society and the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre are hosting a bioblitz at the Garden Patch from 6-8 pm, July 11.

Nocturnal Birds, July 12 (Saskatoon) 
Lyndon Penner will talk about birds that live in the dark at 7 pm, July 12, at Wild Birds Unlimited.

Bat Chat & Bat House Build, July 14 (Redberry Lake) 
Join Melanie Elliot, Batrick, and Elizabat to chat about bats, make a bat house, and look for bats in the park on July 14 at Redberry Lake Regional Park.

Geeking Out, July 14 (Prince Albert)
Kids from grades K-6 are invited to attend interactive science activities presented by the Saskatchewan Science Centre from 9-12 am, July 14, at the John M. Cuelenaere Library.

Summer Plant Walk, July 14 (Regina)
Edible Landscapes Permaculture Design is hosting a walk on July 14 to learn about local wild edible and medicinal plants in the Regina area.

Swainson's hawk

Looking Ahead
Waste Reduction Workshops 
Saskatchewan Waste Reduction Council will be holding the following workshops:
Weyburn – Oct. 30
Prince Albert – Nov. 6
Kindersley – Nov. 14
Humboldt – Nov. 21

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

In the News 
Economists question Saskatchewan’s government-funded anti-carbon tax study

In considering oilsands projects, First Nations face impossible choices: “They are saying in order for you to survive in the economic system we have imposed on you, you have to join us”

Biological poverty - Why we need cities where you can take your shoes off and reconnect with the ground [book review]

Red wiggler worms could make stinky outhouses a thing of the past

Resurgence Voices - podcasts from The Resurgence Trust on ethical living, ecoactivism, and the arts

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).