Welcome to EcoWest News, a weekly round-up of news and resources that you can put to use in addressing environmental issues and protecting the wild in your community.

Across the West

Nelson, BC, is trying out a new system of keeping organic waste out of the landfill. Residents will be provided with a counter-top device that will grind and dehydrate the waste, leaving a soil amendment that can be added to gardens or collected by the city. If the project is successful, it will be phased in city-wide. The program will be accompanied by a local repair program and supplies will be made available from local retailers. [Nelson Star]

The Alberta Environment and Parks Ministry is being split in two: the Environment and Protected Areas Ministry and the Forestry, Parks and Tourism Ministry. CPAWS Northern and Southern Alberta have expressed concern, saying, “The separation of parks from environmental management is a concerning development; perhaps even more troubling, however, is the merging of parks and forestry into a single ministry, and the potential for changes in allowable activities contrary to environmental protection.” Less than 5% of Alberta’s protected areas remain in the new Environment and Protected Areas Ministry. [CPAWS Northern Alberta]

We’ve lost hundreds of glaciers in the Canadian Rockies and we’ll lose nearly all the rest this century due to climate change. [CTV Calgary]

Female polar bears spend up to eight months a year on land in Manitoba’s Hudson Bay Lowlands region. This is where they give birth and raise their cubs to become healthy adults. Mines and associated road networks pose very real dangers to the already imperilled polar bears and their shrinking population. [CPAWS-MB]

Around the World

Farmers in Oregon can borrow an electric tractor to try out on their farm. Electric tractors are very quiet compared to the rumble of diesel-fueled ones, a common cause of hearing loss. [The Daily Yonder]

Boston is moving from paved curb bump-outs to green infrastructure to absorb rainfall, filter air pollution, and reduce heat. [Smart Cities Dive]

Wild Lives

BC has permanently banned rodenticides as they can be harmful to owls and other wildlife. [CBC BC]

The status of many of Alberta’s native bee species is secure or relatively secure, but 53 species are vulnerable while 8 are imperiled or critically imperiled. [Alberta Native Bee Council]

Calgary Connect will be using their urban wildlife monitoring data to map regional ecological corridors to support municipal planning and decision-making. [Miistakis Institute]

The BC government recently announced the release of captive-bred spotted owls. They’ve also approved logging in old-growth, spotted-owl habitat. The Wilderness Society has applied to the federal government to issue an emergency order under the Species at Risk Act to protect spotted owl habitat and give them a chance to recover. [The Narwhal]

Kū, alongside 13 other young people, is suing the Hawaiian government for its failure to protect her constitutional right to a clean and healthful environment. She’s challenging the state’s Department of Transportation for operating a transportation system that the youth claim prioritizes fossil fuel-powered cars over mass transit and other environmentally friendly alternatives. Their goal is to force the department to fully decarbonize by 2045. [Hakai Magazine]

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/apmckinlay/17464143866

EcoFriendly West informs and encourages initiatives that support Western Canada’s natural environment through its online publication and the Nature Companion website/app. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, or subscribe by email.