The Local Climate – Green Collar

We often talk in terms of expunging fossil fuels from our energy diet, which can frame the discussion in a negative and at times contentious light. More often we should be talking in terms of adding clean energy, and acknowledge the otherworldly progress it’s made without anyone noticing. While the rest of us have been...

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The Local Climate – Fixer Upper

There’s a lot to be said about Bill 213, the so-called Sustainable Development Goals Act which represents our province’s impressive though imperfect contribution to national efforts on climate change, passed in late October. The purpose of the Act is to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 53 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030. Instead...

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Solving the plastic dilemma

I find it exhausting when we declare problems unsolvable, as though dedicated dollars and engineering haven’t already granted us the gifts of flight, cell phones and space travel. By comparison the things we have yet to figure out, like ridding plastic from our oceans, should be seen as a matter of time and talent, not...

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Money well spent

It’s almost that time of year when we open our wallets and let their contents scatter to the winds of consumerism, buying things we almost certainly don’t need in order to enjoy the short lived thrill of newness. I do it myself, occasionally weighed down with extra dollars and so lightening my load at the...

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Planting trees

Let me start by saying that planting trees, by the millions or billions as promised by various world leaders, is an excellent idea. These miraculous plants have the power not only to stabilize soil, purify water, shelter biodiversity, improve public health and provide resilience against a warming world, but also capture and store enormous sums...

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The Local Climate – Vote Earth

I’ve never enjoyed talking politics, always searching of the genuine behind blatant facades, but at times like this it’s critical we pay attention. This coming election is the most important in my lifetime. I say that about every election and it’s always true, because each takes us closer to the climatic deadlines which will shape...

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The Travelling Birder

I started birding by accident, intent on spending a year identifying the trees of Eastern Canada and instead falling in love with their feathered residents. In the space of a couple weeks I went from a lifetime of apathy toward birds to an abiding obsession, departing my home most mornings and every evening with camera...

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What we need from nature

Nature means many things to many people, some of us drawn to the cascading rhythm of beaches or rocky shorelines, others to the quiet dignity of ancient forests, others still to public gardens and the ornateness of urban green space. While some people seek out these places very intentionally, I dare say the majority of...

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Dorian

I knew it was coming.. .the sudden darkness and interior silence which marks the loss of power. I filled my bath tub and several containers with drinking water, gathered firewood and prepared a store of canned food days in advance. That hurricane (tropical storm) Dorian would spare my local power lines never occurred to me,...

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When whales wash ashore

There is only one population of North Atlantic Right whales left on Earth, and it can be found off our coastline every summer, building the fat stores necessary for a southern winter. Were fate kinder, their skin would be a smooth, dignified black, but sharing these waters with human beings has covered them with unseemly...

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