Newsletter 126, 28 June 2017

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Transition Brockville's 10th Anniversary


March 2017 marked the 10th anniversary of the founding of Transition Brockville. Joining in our celebration were past and present Steering Committee members and others: (l to r) Nancy Raitt, BPL Community Engagement Coordinator Brandy Smith, Chris Stesky, Bob Panter, Hugh Campbell, City Councillor Leigh Bursey, Izabela Waglay, Lisa Callaghan and Peter Breedyk. Photo courtesy of Andy Wheeler/SNAPD 1000 Islands.

Launch of TB Sustainability Collection

The Brockville Public Library, on Buell Street, now houses the former Transition Brockville Sustainability Library, located at Leeds County Books until the store closed. Now called the Transition Brockville Sustainability Collection, it was officially launched at the May 28 Transition Brockville presentation at the library.

Borrowers will find everything from 'big picture' analyses on the science behind climate change and peak oil to manuals for on-the-ground building of community resilience.

The Sustainability Collection is located on a book trolley in the nonfiction room on the 2nd floor of the Library. Titles can be searched online using the search term 'Transition Brockville'. The general borrowing policy of the Library applies.

Transition Brockville thanks Brockville Public Library's Brandy Smith, community engagement coordinator, and CEO Linda Chadwick for their work in making this collection readily available to the public.

Presentation on waste at local school

Lyndsay d'Entremont, the City of Brockville's solid waste officer, gave a one-hour presentation on waste to 120 Grade 7 and 8 students at St. Mary High School in Brockville in early June.

"Everything went really well," Lyndsay reported. "The presentation was well received. It was a lot of info to pack into one hour, but I was able to cover all slides. One of the activities we did as a classroom instead of small groups to save time. The students had good questions and ideas."

This opportunity for her to engage youngsters in a discussion of waste, what to do with it, and how to reduce it was arranged through Transition Brockville's outreach to area schools.

Bob Panter, a member of the TB steering committee, believes reducing waste is one of the best ways to reduce our carbon footprint. After seeing Lyndsay's display at TB's 2016 Talking Trash event, Bob was determined to help Lyndsay spread the word on waste.

Butler's Creek Community Garden: Update

Garden coordinator Nancy Raitt reports: All gardens are planted and looking good. None of the problems we faced last year at this time with drought. Green and lush for the moment. The usual turtle egg laying activity approx. 2 weeks ago. The snappers love our soft soil to dig in and lay their eggs. City is cooperative as per usual providing us with water and compost. With any luck there will be annuals left over from the City plantings so we can keep with their 150th Birthday theme and plant them into our flower garden. The shared currants, raspberries and thornless blackberries are really taking shape this season. We are to be featured as a part of this year's Brockville Communities in Bloom mid-July so we'll be getting everything cleaned up to look our best for this. We also have a Tasty Tour coming up in August -- details to follow.

Eastern Ontario School Mountain Bike Challenge

Transition Brockville helped in a minor way with this year's Eastern Ontario School Mountain Bike Challenge, through the loan of three of its display tables. From the event website: "This event is meant to celebrate mountain biking for students who have already discovered it, as well as be a great introduction to students who have not yet tried it. It is hosted by experienced mountain bikers who want to introduce this fun and healthy activity to others – it is all volunteer and they do not profit from the event. The event is for all students in Eastern Ontario from grade school to high school."


Downtown Brockville plugs in for EVs

Recorder & Times / Wayne Lowrie / 03 June 2017

Downtown Brockville has its first public charging units for electric vehicles. The two Level 2 EV charging units are located in the underground parking parking garage at the Aquatarium. The charging is free, but users would pay the -per-hour fee to park.

The Thousand Islands Community Development Corporation, the City of Brockville, the Downtown Business Improvement Area, the Aquatarium and 401 Electric chipped in to pay for stations. The city, DBIA and the chamber of commerce hope that the charging stations will act as a magnet to attract electric cars on the 401 to the downtown.

Changes coming to recycling

Recorder & Times / Ronald Zajac / 19 June 2017
City council's finance, administration and operations committee on Tuesday will get an update from staff on the provincial government's new legislative framework for managing waste, the Waste Free Ontario Act. That act, notes the staff report, "aims for full producer responsibility for designated waste mate...

Community Hub hosts HKC challenge

HometownTV12 / Dale Elliot / 22 May 2017
Children from the Community Hub participated in the Healthy Kids Community Challenge (HKCC) on Friday afternoon on Blockhouse Island. The challenge was held to promote the new water bottle filling station in the James C Auld building on Blockhouse Island and to promote and generate awareness for a...

Port's progress boosting regional economy

Recorder & Times / Sabrina Bedford / 12 June 2017
The benefits to the regional economy of having a local port on the international seaway are evident throughout the area, [Robert Dalley, the port's general manager] said. "The port processes and transports over 1.2 million metric tons of goods each year used by local businesses, farms ...

New Abbey Dawn Solar Project already feeding the grid / Tori Stafford / 04 June 2017
Local group Wintergreen Renewable Energy Co-op and SolarShare, a provincial solar energy co-op, hosted a tour and celebration at their Abbey Dawn Project on Sunday, June 4. There, a few dozen people toured the brand new 500 kW solar project, learning about the state-of-the-art tracker technology ...


$200M from cap and trade to make schools greener

CBC News / Muriel Draaisma / 13 June 2017
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Education Minister Mitzie Hunter announced on Tuesday that $200 million from the province's cap and trade program will go towards making schools in the province more energy efficient. The amount is part of the $1.4 billion that has been earmarked in the 2017-18 fiscal year for school renewal and repa...

Ontario is transforming how people get around in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and taking a major step forward to electrify the GO rail network, which will support faster and more frequent service for commuters and families across the region. Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca visited the GO...


This Canadian site lets anyone be a cleantech investor

FastCompany / Ben Schiller / 13 June 2017
On CoPower, an investment platform for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects, you don't have to make concessions between decent financial returns and decent environmental impact (as is often the case elsewhere). If you're willing to put up at least $5,000, you're promised 5% a year over five years, and your money goes to solar farms, geothermal installations, and building retrofits...

National active transportation website launched

Green Communities Canada / Newsletter 904 / 19 June 2017
An alliance comprising Canada Bikes, the National Active & Safe Routes to School Working Group, and Green Communities Canada has launched a website urging support for a Canadian active transportation strategy to address factors that influence everyday active transportation, including infrastructure, community design, and road safety.

The Active Transportation Alliance website summarizes the scope and need for a strategy, the amazing breadth of support it has (more than 160 signatories), and the benefits of active transportation. There's also a "take action" page to join the call for a strategy, get connected, and reach out to decision-makers...

Zero Carbon Building Standard

Canada Green Building Council / May 2017
The Canadian green building sector has been active – for decades – in finding ways to limit harmful impacts from the built environment. While many of these efforts have been voluntary, an increasing number of governments across the country have recognized the potential of the building sector to fight climate change and have set more specific targets. To meet the COP21 goal of keeping global average temperature increases well below 2ēC, green building organizations around the world are supporting the objective of eliminating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with the operation of new buildings by 2030, and eliminating the GHG emissions from all buildings by 2050....


May continues a ridiculous warm streak for the planet

Climate Central / Brian Kahn / 15 June 2017
Another month is in the global temperature record books. While May just missed setting a record, the data is another reminder that climate change is making the world hotter and pushing it into a new state. This May was the second-warmest May on record, according to NASA data released on Thursday. The planet w...

  Antarctic ice loss 2002-2016

NASA Climate Change / 19 May 2017
These images, created with GRACE data, show changes in Antarctic ice mass since 2002. Orange and red shades indicate areas that lost ice mass, while light blue shades indicate areas that gained ice mass. White indicates areas where there has been very little or no change in ice mass since 2002. In general,...

The approaching crisis: Is the world running out of water? / Nick Whigham / 17 June 2017
Water is absolutely fundamental to life, which makes the increasingly loud warnings about water scarcity and an impending global water crisis so concerning for world leaders. If current patterns of consumption continue unabated, two-thirds of the world's population will be facing water shortages as a ...

  Surviving a hostile climate on local food: Michael Brownlee

Conversation Earth / Dave Gardner / 06 June 2017
A scaled-up local food system may be the only way we can feed ourselves as we weather the storm of climate change. Until now, CSAs, urban gardens and farmer's markets have been the face of the local food movement. But Michael Brownlee, author of The Local Food Revolution: How Humanity Will...


Invest in the highest value asset: Personal skills

The Daily Bell / Joe Jarvis / 16 June 2017
That's what this world needs: skills. Raw resources are useless without the skill to properly apply them. There are skills for financial gain, skills for personal gain, and skills for a backup plan. Most of them overlap; something once a hobby can become a career, for instance becoming a tennis instructor. Or a skill that is a "backup plan" can become the bread and butter in an emergen...

6 methods for harvesting rainwater

Mother Earth News / Kelly Coyne, Erik Knutzen / 30 April 2014
After conservation, the second step toward water independence is harvesting rainwater. The number of ways you can go about this might surprise you. Rainwater harvesting is an easy and positive course of action for people in nearly every climate in the world. Living in a dry place ...

Reporting invasive species

Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
In Ontario, there are numerous agencies and monitoring programs in place that collect information and/or identify the distribution of invasive species. Monitoring programs generate large quantities of data, often covering a wide geographic area, multiple species, and lengthy time periods. Invasive species...

How to keep cool without air conditioning

Mother Earth News / Stan Cox / August/September 2015
At current usage rates, air conditioning U.S. homes, businesses, schools and vehicles releases fossil carbon and fluorocarbon refrigerants that have a total annual global-warming impact equivalent to a half-billion tons of carbon dioxide. Eliminating these emissions from air conditioning...


Brockville Communities in Bloom

WHEN: Tuesday, July 18 - Thursday July 20
WHERE: City-wide

The Downtown Brockville DBIA is participating in the 2017 Communities in Bloom program! We are currently seeking some community representatives to sit on our Communities in Bloom committee to assist with planning and planting. If you are interested, please contact the DBIA office at or call 613-345-3269.

Brockville Rails to Trails Festival

City of Brockville
WHEN: Thursday, August 10, 2017 to Sunday, August 13
WHERE: 1 Water Street, Brockville

The Rails to Trails Festival is four fun filled days of interactive programing featuring the sights, sounds and delectable aromas of the early 20th century travelling carnival with "Carnivāle Lune Bleue", the pomp and pageantry of Canada's First Railway Tunnel opening ceremony and the ONTARIO 150 Tour with it's entertaining cultural programming.

Community Treasure Day

City of Brockville
WHEN: Saturday, September 16
WHERE: City-wide

The garage sale where everything is free! Leave any unwanted but still useful items at the curb by 9 a.m. Remove any uncollected treasures from the curb and cease collecting by 6 p.m. Please do not remove items from anyone's property - only collect items from the curb.

Green Energy Doors Open - Ottawa Region

WHEN: Saturday, September 30 - Sunday, October 1
WHERE: Eastern Ontario

Event Hosts are organizations, businesses & individuals, who organize an event to showcase their sustainable projects and initiatives. Participation is FREE and is a great way to promote your initiatives to the community and across the province. Join GEDO'17 and help raise awareness and enthusiasm around sustainable energy in Ontario! If you are interested in participating in GEDO'17 or have any questions, please contact Adi at • • Facebook Group

Mini-icons by Yusuke Kamiyamane. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.