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Dandelion days: What will you have to drink?

in Environment/Opinion by

It was a warm spring day at our food co-op as we ran the annual plant exchange. Gardeners with overflowing yards had dropped off excess plants and cuttings, and now those in need of greenery were choosing which plants they would like to take home.

“Excuse me,” said a hesitant voice, “I’m looking for some help with dandelions.” It was one of the neighbours from down the block. “I really need to find a way to deal with all the dandelions in my grass.”

My colleague and I shared a glance. “Well,” I said, “You could always leave them. They are one of the earliest sources of pollen for bees, and they are fun for the kids to pick. You could also eat their leaves.”

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Water in plastic: Who’s most responsible in the drive for endless growth?

in Environment/Opinion by
Water in plastic: Who’s most responsible in the drive for endless growth?

It was a peaceful climate justice protest organized by a high school student inspired by activist Greta Thunberg. A man approached us to say he fully supported what we were doing; and in the next breath said he hoped we didn’t think the carbon tax was going to make a difference. A fellow protester asked him what approach we should take: “Reduce, reuse and recycle. Just like we’ve always done.” Our visitor then jumped into his car and drove away.

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Kawartha Lakes looking at new alternatives to reduce environmental footprint

in Environment/Municipal by
Kawartha Lakes looking at new alternatives to reduce environmental footprint
Councillor Kathleen Seymour-Fagan has proposed a possible Styrofoam ban.

A motion brought forward by Councillor Kathleen Seymour-Fagan to Committee of the Whole on May 7 proposed looking at a possible Styrofoam ban. The memo recommended that Kawartha Lakes staff conduct a study surrounding the feasibility of a ban and bring a report back to Council by the end of this year.

“It’s time that we do something. We can’t ban what’s coming in from external sources, such as online retailers, but we can ban what’s being used and sold directly in our municipality. It all ends up in the landfill,” commented Councillor Seymour-Fagan.

“I own a restaurant and there are options to ban Styrofoam. Part of our Strategic Plan is a healthy environment, and this is part of a healthy environment. It’s time we take a leadership role in change.”

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‘We want change:’ Student activists demand climate change action in strike

in Environment by
Several major cities across Canada saw climate strikes similar to this one. Photo: Mallory Cramp-Waldinsperger.

They may not be old enough to vote, but a group of students made their voices loud and clear in today’s climate strike. What began as a handful of Central Senior Public School students gathering at Victoria Park quickly grew to a swarm of approximately 70 protesters.

As they marched down Kent Street in downtown Lindsay today, the students, accompanied by several adult supporters carried handmade signs with slogans like “The sea is rising, so are we,” and “Planet over profit.”

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Permaculture: A better approach to gardening for your health, wealth, and environment

in Community/Environment by

If you want to be an environmentally conscious gardener or homeowner, it may be worth considering an alternative method to planning your property. The traditional North American suburban lawn and garden typically requires much maintenance, generous amounts of watering and the addition of fertilizers and chemicals in order to be successful.

These activities degrade land and incorporate pollutants into the local environment. Quite recently, around the world, a new movement has brought hope for the future of our planet, and it starts with the homeowner.

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Healthy Environment Plan 18 months in the making

in Environment/Municipal by
Holding the Healthy Environment Plan: Tracy Richardson, Councillor, Denise Williams, Project Lead.

The Healthy Environment Plan has been 18 months in the making, involving a 60-member working group and consultations with more than 2,600 community members.

Council Champion Tracy Richardson kicked off the presentation by sharing that “the Healthy Environment Plan is a transformational plan that maps out high-level strategies for reducing greenhouse gasses over the next 10 years. It addresses changes in our growing seasons, droughts, flooding, impact of freeze-thaw cycles and warmer lake temperatures. This is a community plan; it was created with the community and will be carried out by all of us as we seek to cope with climate change adaptation and mitigation.”

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Kawartha Lakes adopts its first Healthy Environment Plan

in Environment/Municipal by

At the March 19 Committee of the Whole meeting, the Healthy Environment Plan was recommended to be adopted by Council. The Plan has been 18 months in the making, involving a 60-member working group and consultations with more than 2600 community members.

Council Champion Tracy Richardson kicked off the presentation by sharing that “the Healthy Environment Plan is a transformational plan that maps out high-level strategies for reducing greenhouse gasses over the next 10 years. It addresses changes in our growing seasons, droughts, flooding, impact of freeze-thaw cycles and warmer lake temperatures. This is a community plan; it was created with the community and will be carried out by all of us as we seek to cope with climate change adaptation and mitigation.”

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Women in Business Profile: Miryal

in Business by

Kim Thompson grew up in the Lindsay area and still lives in Kawartha Lakes to this day. She and her husband, Chris Cookman, and son Jacob Cookman, own three businesses, Stigma Style Landscaping Inc., located in the Kawarthas and Greenbank Garden Centre and Cookman Corporation, located in Durham Region.

Kim’s passion of late though has to do with a new innovation she sells across Canada, sold in over 32 retail outlets, and used by growers and landscapers – an incredible discovery from a few short years ago about the power of mycorrhizae.

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Be careful around waterways, says Kawartha Conservation

in Environment by
Kawartha Conservation issues flood outlook
Unstable stream banks and extremely cold water temperatures can lead to hazardous and dangerous conditions.

Kawartha Conservation is reminding residents of the dangers that exist near bodies of water, particularly around this time of year, and urges people to keep family and pets away from the edges of all waterways.

Spring is quickly approaching and with warmer temperatures, people look forward to getting outdoors. However, warmer temperatures will bring higher water levels and faster flowing water in local watercourses.

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Make new habits easier: Simple ways to care for the Earth

in Environment/Opinion by

What are the things that make change possible? We might decide to eat better, or get more exercise, or care for the environment. But then we find ourselves late, so we grab some fast food, or we have too much work to do so we skip the walk, or we would like to buy local, but we can’t really afford it. The truth is, it is hard to change our habits, no matter how important we think such changes could be.

One way to make changes and stick to them, is to make it easier to do things the new way. Here is an example from my house. We wanted to cut back on our energy demand. And nothing takes energy like a clothes dryer. So, we chose not to have a dryer.

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