Tuesday 21 August 2012

EcoSask News, August 21, 2012

Protecting our community's treasures - land, water, birds, and animals

Community Land
Sale of Community Pastures
Trevor Herriot urges people who care about Saskatchewan’s native grasslands and its wild creatures, to send a letter to Brad Wall and Lyle Stewart protesting the proposed sale of the community pastures.

Community Forestry
Community Forestry: Local Values, Conflict and Forest Governance by Ryan Bullock and Kevin Hanna provides case studies in local forest governance, community sustainability, and grassroots environmentalism. Ryan Bullock is a SSSHRC post-doctoral fellow at the University of Saskatchewan.

Meewasin Trail Expansion
This fall, the Meewasin Valley Authority is extending the Meewasin Trail all the way to 71st Street in the city’s north end, with an eventual goal of reaching Wanuskewin Heritage Park. The extension adds more than 3.5 km to the current 60 km of trail.

Bird Walks, Sept. 2 & 8
Join the Saskatoon Nature Society on September 2 for the Meewasin Park Fall Warbler Walk from 7-9 am. Or join the Society for the Fall Bird Count on September 8. Novice birders will be assigned to a group with an experienced leader.

Nature Saskatchewan Fall Meet, Sept. 28-29
Nature Saskatchewan’s Fall Meet will be held in Preeceville September 28 and 29. Field trips will feature the migratory water fowl at Gulka Slough, Ketchen Lake, and Lake Lomond.

Arctic Sea Ice Vanishing
Satellite measurements indicate that Arctic sea ice is melting much more rapidly than anticipated and the Arctic could be free of sea ice in the summer in a decade. “This rate of loss is 50% higher than most scenarios outlined by polar scientists and suggests that global warming, triggered by rising greenhouse gas emissions, is beginning to have a major impact on the region. In a few years the Arctic ocean could be free of ice in summer, triggering a rush to exploit its fish stocks, oil, minerals and sea routes.”

Planning for Healthy Lakes
Dr. Peter Leavitt, University of Regina’s Canada Research Chair in Environmental Change and Society, studied 250 bodies of water across Canada, including several in the Qu’Appelle Valley.

The study points to spectacularly poor water quality in individual lakes across the Prairies and stresses the importance of developing a long-term plan for cleaning them up. Saskatchewan is currently developing a 25-year water plan, and Leavitt emphasizes the importance of considering water quality as well as quantity.

Shoreline Clean-up, Sept. 15-23
We can all do our bit to improve water quality by joining the Great Canadian Shore Clean-up from September 15 to 23.

Eco-school programs in Ontario and England provide a framework to help make sustainability an integral part of school life. The Ontario program focuses on ecological literacy, waste minimization, energy conservation, and school ground greening. British students measure and monitor their school’s environmental performance.

Environmental Leadership
LEAD Canada, the Canadian affiliate of Leadership for Environment and Development International, is accepting registrations for its leadership training program within the sphere of sustainable development. There will be a western Canadian session in late January 2012 in Regina. The program includes online and face-to-face sessions as well as a challenge component involving a real-life situation.

Here’s a trio of interesting articles about waste management:

Turning waste into electricity could make it an energy superstar.

However, dealing with waste - both organic and metals - can be a challenge.

Creative use of wastewater could be the key to quenching global thirst. 

EcoSask News is a weekly round-up of local news and events. Email us if you have items you would like us to include. A complete listing of all upcoming events can be found on our Calendar.

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