April 2020 Newsletter

Bow Valley Climate Action

Greetings BVCA Supporters,

We hope that each of you are staying healthy and finding support in the strength of our communities during this challenging time.  BVCA extends a special and heartfelt thank you to all essential service workers during this time!We have a piece of exciting news:  Bow Valley Climate Action officially became a non-profit society in Alberta recently!  This will mean that sometime soon we will hold our first Annual General Meeting (AGM) to elect a Board.  We will inform you when this AGM will be held – and in what format, depending on the length of time social distancing restrictions last.
A topic on many minds these days is how to use the opportunity of upcoming economic stimulus packages to accelerate the transformation of the Canadian economy to one that will meet Canada’s 2050 net zero carbon emissions target.  The Pembina Institute has an excellent article on this topic:  Pembina Institute’s Green Stimulus recommendations.  BVCA has drafted a letter (see below) to federal representatives to make this urgent request.  

Numerous scholars and researchers agree, the prevalence and impacts of pandemics are increased by climate change.

Let’s be motivated by the coming together of our communities to address the novel coronavirus to build a similar united and ambitious effort to fight climate change!

Take Action from Home
Write a Letter! Stimulus Funding: Over the weeks and months ahead, the federal government will be making important decisions on where to focus stimulus funding, used to ‘re-start’ the Canadian economy following the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, more than ever, it is important to let your federal leaders know that you support climate action and believe it should be at the heart of stimulus funding – for our collective future health, social, financial and environmental well-being!  BVCA letter (pdf)BVCA letter (word.docx)Tips to write your own letter! 

Alpine Helicopters presented to Canmore Council regarding their lease renewal, on March 17. A decision has yet to be made regarding their lease renewal. Some helpful questions you might ask of our council:  How many GHGs per year does Alpine Helicopters emit due to tourism flights versus search and rescue?How many GHGs will their lease renewal allow?How does this reflect our Climate Emergency Declaration?

AB Parks: The fight continues against the province’s recent decision to permanently close 164 of our parks, not just for the pandemic, but forever. Parks play an important role in mitigating and adapting to climate change. If you want climate action, let your representatives know that you want our parks back! 
Banff-Kananaskis MLA: Miranda Rosin
Alberta Environment and Parks Minister: Jason Nixon
Alberta Premier: Jason Kenny
Other representatives positioned to deliver climate action  

The University of Alberta Climate Action Coalition has started a petition to Canadian Universities to sign the United Nations Global Climate Letter. If you have not already participated, please click here to learn more.

Transportation Team Updates
Vehicle Idling:  As reported in the March newsletter and as part of the Canmore Eagles’ effort to become the greenest hockey team in the world, the the Transportation team worked with the Bow Valley Clean Air Society to monitor vehicle idling at Canmore Eagles games.  Preliminary planning is underway for more extensive monitoring of vehicle idling, followed by a public information campaign to help build awareness in Canmore of the GHG impact of vehicle idling.  

Active Transportation Challenge:  The transportation team is also considering running an active transportation challenge in the fall.  The goal of this event is to help get residents using alternative forms of transportation to get around town and to raise awareness of the Town’s active transportation goals.  We would run a friendly event whereby every time a participant commutes by foot, bike or public transit to a central location such as Elevation Place, their name would be entered into a draw for a door prize.  This event, as well as the anti-idling campaign will depend on the community returning to more normal activity following the COVID 19 crisis.  

Public Transit:  In February several transportation team members met with ROAM Transit in order to better understand ROAM’s priorities and challenges and to determine whether BVCA could help support public transit in Canmore.  We will be following up with ROAM this spring to flesh out some ideas following ROAM completing its next strategic planning exercise. 

Buildings Team Updates
Land Use By-Law Amendments:  BVCA has had several meetings with Town of Canmore staff and councillors to inquire about how the Canmore Climate Action Plan and Climate Emergency Declaration could and should affect the Land use Bylaw.  We hope to help ensure these initiatives lead to meaningful changes in GHG emissions emanating from the Bow Valley. 

Climate Impact Related Events
Postponed until October 8th, 2020
Save-the-Date! Bow Valley
Sustainable Building Summit
9am – 5pm, The Malcolm, Spring Creek

Check out the Biosphere’s Facebook page for updates. Every Thursday!

Calgary Climate Hub Speakers

7:05 pm Online 
Please check out the link to see the full line up.

For climate action tips you can do as an individual, check out the Biosphere’s Bow Valley Shift newsletter!

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