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

Alberta’s provincially funded oil and gas lobby is targeting Nanaimo, BC, councillors urging a change in their policy to phase out gas hookups in new buildings. [Vancouver Sun]

Manitoba Eco-Network is calling for a technical review and a public hearing into Premier Horticulture’s request to expand bog peat harvesting in Poplar Creek Bog. [Manitoba Eco-Network]

Not all urban areas have equal access to nature. It often depends on income, as in Vancouver where more affluent neighbourhoods have more green space than more vulnerable areas. [UBC News]

Around the World

A living breakwater off Staten Island makes room for oysters and tidal pools. [Good News Network]

Vehicle tires are a significant source of air, soil, and water pollution, a chemical cocktail that’s only just getting the attention it deserves. [Yale Environment 360]

What appears to be a good alternative doesn’t always turn out that way. Lego says using recycled plastic for its bricks didn’t reduce carbon emissions. [The Guardian]

The Pacific Northwest Bumble Bee Atlas is documenting wild bumblebees and the plants they’re foraging for. [High Country News]


Over 100,000 tons of furniture are thrown away in Washington State each year due to a lack of alternatives. The Furniture Repair Bank provides storage space, repairs furniture for reuse, and redesigns it for repairability and longevity. [Furniture Repair Bank]

A presentation to the Victoria Natural History Society discusses how to avoid fear and fleeing in birds in terms of conservation, photography, and birdwatching. [1 hr 16 min, YouTube]

Bird seed has its place, but what wild birds really need is more natural sources of food: planning your backyard bird garden. [Rewilding]

Communities Protecting Our Coast, Vancouver Island, provides the local newspaper with Climate Hugs, a monthly profile of a community member who is committed to addressing climate issues. [Communities Protecting Our Coast]

Starry Skies

Participate in a 24-hour global, virtual conference with experts in the dark sky movement and learn about hands-on activities and tools you can use to combat light pollution in your region on Nov. 3-4. [Under One Sky]

Here’s how community members in one small town in the US are working with the municipality to address light pollution. [Dark Sky]

Two recent children’s books:

What if Night? By Paul Bogard celebrates the joy of the night-time world.

Saving the Night: How Light Pollution is Harming Life on Earth by Stephen Aitken explains how plants and animals have adapted over millions of years to survive and thrive in the dark.

Food for Thought

The key to humanity’s future will be our “willingness to view limits not as restrictions to be fought against, but as boundaries that enable systems to work. We need to not just respect limits, but to celebrate them and work in harmony with them.” [Ensia]

The Royal Ontario Museum's Curator of Climate Change believes “a good way forward isn’t necessarily trying to make people more scared of climate change. It’s about making people less scared of climate solutions.” [The Walrus]

Nature’s Wonders

Basket Stars, found off the BC coast, are 500 million years old. The embryos develop inside red soft coral, and they have 5 arms that just keep on branching, unfurling into a basket to snag plankton. [The Marine Detective]

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/apmckinlay/21849693510

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 Mastodon, or subscribe by email.