Views from the Edge

Welcome to the CRC blog, where we discuss bleeding edge issues around sustainable community development. The term ‘bleeding edge’ connotes the idea of our failure to somehow or other convince the publics about the urgency of responding to climate change now, and that we need to better communicate the principles and practises of sustainable development to the wider publics. So, yes it takes courage to be 'at the edge', and sometimes one 'bleeds' a lot, but let's start the conversation now. I encourage our students and former students to use this blog and share what they are learning out in the real world.   Ann

Treading Uncharted Waters

In 2008, Norway established a lifeline for humanity to ensure the survival of our precious food supply. On the Arctic island of Spitsbergen, the Norwegian Government built a “failsafe” freezer vault in a permafrost mountain located in the Arctic circle. Intended as insurance for the world, it was filled with nearly a million packets of seeds, each containing an important global food crop.

Waste Not, Want Not

When it comes to recycling, two provinces are the best in Canada. The Paper & Paperboard Packaging Environmental Council has just released a useful summary of this information, based on their analysis of StatsCan data.

Art is Bracing for Climate Change

Support is making a splash at the 2017 Venice Biennale. This monumental sculpture, crafted by artist Lorenzo Quinn, depicts giant ceramic hands reaching from the Grand Canal in Venice to brace the Ca’ Sagredo Hotel.

Death Spiral for Big Oil

Stanford University economist, Tony Seba, has just released a new study forecasting that "the entire market for land transport will switch to electrification, leading to a collapse of oil prices and the demise of the petroleum industry as we have known it".

Raise the Roof for Tesla’s New Solar Tiles

Tesla has recently begun taking orders for their new solar tiles, which are a game-changer for those looking to invest in alternative home energy. The design itself is innovative, with modular tiles that can cover as much or as little of the roof as desired. And since the tiles look almost exactly like regular tiles, coming in a range of styles, they can easily blend in with non-solar parts of the roof.

Things are Looking Brighter

India is well on its way to meeting the renewable energy targets set during the Paris Climate agreement. With plummeting wholesale prices of solar power reaching another record low in the country, renewable energy is continuing to undercut fossil-fuel generated power. Cheaper finance and growing investor confidence have resulted in this historic 40% drop in price thereby enhancing India’s renewable energy capacity. Even as the world’s third largest carbon polluter, the country is set to exceed renewable energy targets by 2027.

Nurturing the Next Generation

Women for Nature, a philanthropic initiative with Nature Canada, just launched the Young Nature Leaders Grant. In celebration of Canada 150, they invited young Canadians to submit projects that “celebrate the role that nature plays in Canadian culture and identity”.

Books are Getting a Buzz

The winner of the 2017 Innovations in Reading Prize was awarded last week to Barbershop Books, a program that adds a reading space to local barbershops. The initiative was started by Alvin Irby, a former kindergarten and first grade teacher, who specifically wanted young black boys to have a reading space that is fun and stress-free.

Pacific Climate Warriors are Raising a Paddle

A delegation of the Pacific Climate Warriors, a 350.org climate activist group from the Pacific Islands, are arriving in Canada today to raise a paddle. During their 9-day trip, they will tour the tar sands in Alberta, engage in public events, and meet with various Indigenous Communities in Western Canada.

Abstracting Industrial Scars

 J Henry Fair doesn’t really consider his mesmerizing aerial photographs art. He sees them as documents or intricate studies that tell a complete story about the things we take for granted on our planet.