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Sustainability

This category contains 118 posts

Food deserts and Covid-19

In Edmonton, Alberta, Canada we have an organization, Fresh Routes, that runs a mobile grocery store. One of the main goals is to increase access to fresh, healthy foods in low income neighbourhoods. This is necessary because these neighbourhoods often have reduced access to major grocery stores. The residents rely on public transit and active … Continue reading

How close are you willing to live to renewable energy?

Support for making a societal shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy is growing but one of the issues is where to locate things like solar and wind farms. These generation points don’t have the same ongoing emissions as fossil fuel run plants so there is potential to locate them closer to communities without the … Continue reading

Context matters in climate change policy support

I tend to set up the courses I teach in ways that students aren’t always used to. I do this based on research about effective strategies and I talk to my students about that research and the reasons why I have chosen a particular approach. I find these conversations are really important because, like most … Continue reading

What makes a policymaker take action on climate change?

As someone who takes personal action and supports policies to take wider action to combat climate change and as someone living in a province where the current government makes regular decisions that go in the face of the science and bet against the need for climate change action, I’m curious what would make a policymaker … Continue reading

Losing traditional cultures as we lose nature

I was speaking with a student who was a member of a First Nations group once about her language when she made a comment that has stuck with me for several years. She said that when she moved to the city to pursue school she had to give up part of her language. This wasn’t, … Continue reading

Nanoparticles for nano-potholes?

I live in a winter city. Potholes are a reality on our roads, splits on our sidewalks, and cracks in our foundations. The number of construction stories here that include some version of “they had to replace the materials because they warped or broke in the extreme cold” is plentiful. But the thing is, these … Continue reading

Tree farts

Yep, you read that correct, tree farts. I’ve been walking in Edmonton’s river valley a lot this year and I’ve noticed a lot of standing dead trees, often called snags. I don’t know if there’s actually more than normal around here but in coastal areas there has been an increase thanks to climate change. Climate … Continue reading

Systems thinking and mapping resource

I’ve been working on a project related to the introductory sustainability course that I teach. Systems thinking is an incredibly valuable approach to assessing complex situations and challenges. However, it can be very challenging to grasp. As I developed the systems thinking material for my course, I created an open educational resource (OER) on the … Continue reading

Intergenerational trauma impacts gene expression

With the recent devastating discovery of 215 children in unmarked graves at a former residential school in Kamloops, B.C., in Canada, the pain and fear of First Nations communities has hit front page media again. I say it this way because, in talking with individuals from First Nations communities the trauma of both first hand … Continue reading

Years of good life

I’m very intrigued by the idea that we need measurements of well-being and success that go beyond income and GDP. Sure, I could have taken another contract and worked all weekend long but I’m in a position where I can choose to go kayaking instead and take care of my mental and physical health. I … Continue reading

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