How to be eco-friendly when mowing your lawn

Helping insects survive is more valuable than practically anything else we do to help nature

How to be eco-friendly when mowing your lawnI recently wrote about haying and the delicate balance between harvesting a crop and protecting nesting birds. Today, I would like to offer some advice to help us protect the beauty and functionality of our properties while simultaneously protecting wildlife. Why should we care? Wildlife is more than just an attractive feature of the landscape;…

The cities are taking over Canadian politics

Recognizing the political power of Canadian cities has become a core element of national politics

The cities are taking over Canadian politicsThe parsing of the federal election results is underway, as Canadians seek insights into leadership, party fortunes, regional concerns, and the priorities of special interest groups. This process often exposes major currents in Canada’s political culture and provides the country with a glimpse into what lies ahead. In my view, a major focus should be…

Eating human food could mean trouble for urban coyotes, study shows

New U of A research illustrates link between anthropogenic diet, human-like gut bacteria and poor health

Eating human food could mean trouble for urban coyotes, study showsA diet rich in human food may be wreaking havoc on the health of urban coyotes, according to a new study by University of Alberta biologists. The research team from the Faculty of Science examined the stomach contents, gut microbiome and overall health of nearly 100 coyotes in Edmonton’s capital region. Their results also show coyotes…

As Canadians flee cities, rural living gets its mojo back

Pandemic has accelerated the flow of people fleeing cities, especially among young people

It’s no secret the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many Canadians to move from cities to the suburbs and even the countryside. According to Statistics Canada, the phenomenon led to a record loss of population in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver in 2020. Vacancy rates are skyrocketing in many urban centres across the country. The same phenomenon…

Fake commuting for a coffee is healthy and normal

People need to get replenished, energized and to physically separate themselves from the workplace, even if it’s home

Fake commuting for a coffee is healthy and normalFake commutes are apparently a thing. According to human resources professionals, some people will simply take their cars, the bus or the metro to start the day, or else for a break to establish some sort of daily routine. It seems unbelievable and not much data exists to prove how often it’s happening. But it’s…

Better-designed buildings make people’s lives easier

Tomasz Sztuk of Sztuk Architecture explains why focus on long-term sustainability, efficiency and good detailing pays off

Better-designed buildings make people’s lives easierTomasz Sztuk is owner of Sztuk Architecture. Tell me about you and your company. Sztuk: I’ve been practising architecture in Canada since 1991. Before starting my own firm, Sztuk Architecture Inc., in 2013, I worked in Calgary in capacities ranging from junior architect, to director of design, to principal. In addition to running my own…

Food-related issues are widening Canada’s rural-urban gap

For years, farmers have tried to tell their stories through social media and elsewhere – and too often failed

Food-related issues are widening Canada’s rural-urban gapFor years, farmers have tried to convey their message and explain the agriculture and rural lifestyle to the broader Canadian populace. They’ve taken to social media with touching stories and countless messages, telling Canadians what things are like on the farm. Some have called this “agvocacy.” But the new Canada’s Food Guide and recent policy…

Canada needs to become more densely populated

We need a larger internal market that would create economies of scale and further economic productivity growth

Canada needs to become more densely populatedFormer prime minister William Lyon Mackenzie King once quipped, “If some countries have too much history, we have too much geography.” This has always been evidenced in Canada’s low national population density, estimated at about four people per square kilometre. Nevertheless, we’re still a highly urbanized country with more than 80 per cent of our…

Calgary rated most livable city in Canada, 4th in world

New survey rates Calgary behind only Vienna, Melbourne and Osaka. Vancouver and Toronto also made it into the top 10

Calgary rated most livable city in Canada, 4th in worldA new report suggests that Calgary is one of the most livable cities in the world. The Global Liveability Index 2018, a report by The Economist Intelligence Unit, rated Calgary fourth overall in the world – behind Vienna, which topped the ranking, followed by Melbourne and Osaka. The rest of the top 10 in descending…

Integrate Canada’s forgotten Indigenous into the urban mainstream

We need to follow the example set by New Zealand, which gave the Māori the help they needed, while allowing them to preserve their culture

In 2013, the people of the small outport community of Little Bay Islands, N.L., had to make a very emotional decision. The local economy had completely dried up. The crab processing plant had closed and the community was far away from government public services. Looking at its bleak prospects, the people of the small community…