New texting services support first responders’ mental health

Daily positive messages are designed to help emergency personnel cope with trauma of the job, similar to successful Text4Hope

New texting services support first responders’ mental healthTwo free text messaging services have been launched to support the mental health of Alberta’s first responders. Text4PTSI and Text4Well-being are designed to help emergency personnel cope positively with feelings of stress, anxiety, depression, disturbed sleep and suicidal thoughts, said project lead Vincent Agyapong, clinical professor of psychiatry and global mental health in the University of Alberta Faculty…

How to wreck Alberta’s path to a balanced budget

Cave in to government employee unions during negotiations

How to wreck Alberta’s path to a balanced budgetLike boxers standing in the middle of the ring before a big fight, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and government union bosses are in a stare-down before the big battle of 2021: government employee contract negotiations. For years, these negotiations were foregone conclusions. Premiers would talk tough and then cave. Politicians weren’t betting with their own…

Crude oil markets remain unsettled

Declining Chinese demand, a rising rig count in the United States and a devastating resurgence of COVID-19 in Asia all play a role

Crude oil markets remain unsettledIt has been a fluctuating week for the oil markets. In the immediate aftermath of the agreement within the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and their allies in OPEC+, crude prices fell by a devastating seven per cent on July 19. However, with signs of demand holding despite the spread of the Delta COVID-19 variant,…

Digital tech experts work to bring internet to rural and remote communities

Coalition they helped create will advocate, share ideas and shape policy aimed at improving access to broadband

Digital tech experts work to bring internet to rural and remote communitiesTwo University of Alberta professors are working to improve internet services for Albertans living in rural and remote communities as members of a new coalition. The Alberta Rural Connectivity Coalition (ARCC), which U of A digital technology experts Rob McMahon and Michael McNally helped found last fall, is working with steering committee members to bring together Alberta communities to explore ways…

Firefighters who fought Fort McMurray wildfire suffer persistent lung damage

With the risk of asthma more than doubling

Firefighters who fought Fort McMurray wildfire suffer persistent lung damageFirefighters at the centre of the battle against the massive Fort McMurray wildfire in 2016 have persistent lung damage, according to new findings published by a University of Alberta occupational health research team. “Those who were dealing with burning organic matter were exposed to a barrage of small particles in the smoke, and the ones with the…

Oil markets feel pinch from renewed COVID-19 outbreaks

All eyes are focused on Saudi Arabia. Will it continue to single-handedly maintain stability in the markets?

Oil markets feel pinch from renewed COVID-19 outbreaksUncertainty has overtaken the crude oil markets again for several reasons. Since March, crude oil markets have mostly been ascending. But prices declined last week by a greater margin than any time in the last four-plus months. And the resurgence of COVID-19 in many parts of the world is clouding the near-term future of oil.…

Building neurotech community in Alberta earns student startup award

Eden Redman co-founded student group-turned-non-profit to support students exploring new ways for computers to interact with the brain

Building neurotech community in Alberta earns student startup awardEverything from brain-controlled prosthetics to games that are responsive to brain activity are within our grasp, according to University of Alberta student Eden Redman. Redman’s work promoting and expanding access to brainwave-sensing technology has earned him the Student Entrepreneur of the Year award at Startup Edmonton’s YEG Startup Community Awards. Announced at an online ceremony in May,…

Bleak clouds over the crude oil horizon are dissipating

But much still depends on United States-Iran nuclear talks and how OPEC+ members will react to any deal

Bleak clouds over the crude oil horizon are dissipatingCrude oil markets are hot. Prices are up and the US$75 line has been breached. Chatter about oil touching US$100 is getting loud and clear. Global oil consumption is getting closer to the pre-pandemic levels. The bleak clouds hanging over the crude oil horizon are beginning to dissipate. Industry eyes are again on the Organization…

ConnecTour Chronicles: Even in Banff, COVID-19 has left its mark

Tattoo artist Robb Syre moved to the Alberta mountain resort town to chase a dream with his best friend. Instead, he lost his friend to the virus

ConnecTour Chronicles: Even in Banff, COVID-19 has left its markTroy Media publisher Doug Firby and Travel editor Lisa Monforton are part of a group of Canadians who call themselves ConnecTour. Starting in May in British Columbia and ending in October in Newfoundland, they hope to make an 8,000-km bicycle journey across the country, discovering how the COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped our lives and our…

Alberta’s own Independence Day is fast approaching

Albertans have tried to work within the system but it is stacked against them

Alberta’s own Independence Day is fast approachingFor many Albertans, it is 1775. A year later, as every American knows, the Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia. At the time the Colonies were still part of the British Empire; it is, therefore, a British as much as an American document, which is why its logic has such a wide appeal today…

Changes to royalties could super-charge upgrading in Alberta

Fixing the royalty structure seems like low-hanging fruit

Changes to royalties could super-charge upgrading in AlbertaWith news of the official termination of the Keystone XL project, the Alberta government is out approximately $1.3 billion. What’s more, the province is left with unrefined bitumen that it doesn’t have the capacity to upgrade to higher-value products like gasoline and diesel. Why, then, does the province not look to develop its own capacity…

Prairie provinces debt levels a ticking time bomb

An economic burden for future generations

Prairie provinces debt levels a ticking time bombThe debt in Canada’s Prairie provinces has grown colossally during the COVID-19 pandemic, just as debt has in the rest of Canada and around the world. At the end of 2020, Alberta’s debt was estimated at $98 billion, Manitoba’s was $28.6 billion and Saskatchewan’s was $15 billion. These debts are an economic burden for the taxpayers…

Rising demand and prices suggest an oil market resurgence

US$100 oil is a distinct possibility

Rising demand and prices suggest an oil market resurgenceThe world needs more oil. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Russia and American shale oil producers all need to up their output to keep the rising prices of the “super cycle,” as Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman called it, under control. Media reports say Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman told the Robin…

Business grad manages all-star performance in school and sports

From penalty kicks to the Academic All-Canadians, Kiera Fujimoto was a clutch player on the soccer pitch and in the classroom

Business grad manages all-star performance in school and sportsThe second-last time former University of Alberta Pandas midfielder Kiera Fujimoto took a penalty kick to decide a meaningful soccer game, she was a member of an under-15 Team Alberta playing in the final of the All-Star National Championship in Ontario. Unfortunately, her miss as the seventh shooter resulted in a loss in the final.…

Incidents of serious parasitic disease on the rise in Alberta

The province is now the North American hotspot for a rare, potentially fatal disease

Incidents of serious parasitic disease on the rise in AlbertaA rare parasitic infection imported from Europe continues to take root in Alberta. The province is now the North American hotspot for human alveolar echinococcosis (AE), which takes the form of a growth in the liver, causing serious and potentially deadly health complications. A recently published review of known AE cases in Alberta found 17 instances…
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