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Five tips for getting your letter to the editor published

Photo: Five tips for getting your letter to the editor published

By Gideon Forman

One of the best ways to tell government to protect the environment is writing a letter to the editor.
The letters page is one of the most popular parts of a newspaper — and it's not just your friends and neighbours who read it. Local members of Parliament, provincial legislators and city councillors keep an eye on it to stay abreast of their constituents' concerns.

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World leaders in Mexico to protect biodiversity. What will Canada have to say?

Healthy Oceans | December 7, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: World leaders in Mexico to protect biodiversity. What will Canada have to say?

(Credit: Center for Whale Research)

By Jay Ritchlin

"We're back." Just over a year ago, freshly elected Justin Trudeau jubilantly broadcast his intention to revive Canada's reputation as a progressive, co-operative and inclusive nation to the international community. But is that how Canada will be represented at the Convention on Biological Diversity's 13th Conference of the Parties (COP 13) in Cancun, Mexico this month?

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Monarch butterfly year in review: #2016sucks

Photo: Monarch butterfly year in review: #2016sucks

By Rachel Plotkin

This has been a rough year. We lost pop culture icons Leonard Cohen, David Bowie, Prince and Muhammad Ali. And, according to the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada, monarch butterflies may not be far behind.

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Reconciliation requires recognizing rights-based fishing

Science Matters | December 1, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: Reconciliation requires recognizing rights-based fishing

(Photo Credit: Nick Thompsonvia Flickr)

By David Suzuki with contributions from David Suzuki Foundation senior communications specialist Theresa Beer.

Fishing is as emblematic to Canada as ice hockey. It's also a way of life with a long tradition in coastal Indigenous communities. But since European contact, it's been all but eliminated as an economic development opportunity for them.

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When it comes to engaging diverse audiences, the messenger matters

Photo: When it comes to engaging diverse audiences, the messenger matters

(Photo Credits: Winnie Hwo)

By Winnie Hwo, Senior public engagement specialist

A year ago, the David Suzuki Foundation published a Sustainable Diversity Report based on our work to reach "beyond the choir." After that, 45 people from all walks of life came together to discuss the report's key findings and to strategize about next steps.

As a result of this initial gathering, 11 people came together to form the Sustainable Diversity Network. Its mandate was described as follows:

Our goal is to mix cultural inclusiveness with environmental stewardship. We aim to advance our understanding of sustainability and expand the environmental movement by celebrating voices and stories that are often unheard or unacknowledged.

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The delicious benefits of edible perennial plants

Queen of Green | November 29, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: The delicious benefits of edible perennial plants

Oca is from the Andes and the bulb can be harvested after frost, once the above-ground greens die back. (Credit: Fluffymuppet via Flickr)

I aspire to eat more local foods — out of my own garden, if possible.

So I took a perennial vegetables workshop by Solara of Hatchet and Seed @hatchetnseed. She introduced me to a new term, "edimentals" — edible, ornamental plants — and supplied a list.

Perennial vegetables are great because they:

  • Keep coming back!
  • Withstand pests better than annuals
  • Build and improve soil quality
  • Don't need tilling, leaving mycelial culture (mushrooms and other fungi) and soil structure intact
  • Increase aeration and water absorption
  • Create compost, add to topsoil and bring up nutrients from deep down when dropped leaves die back each year
  • Are edimentals — delicious AND beautiful!

Artichokes

Need a warm, protected spot. Varieties include globe and cardoon (wild). Blanch stalks and eat them cooked, too! Warning: sunchokes or Jerusalem artichoke spread.

Asparagus

Buy crowns or start from seed. From seed to shoot takes three years! Before prepping your bed, think long-term (they live up to 40 years) and keep soil mounded.

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What Canada's coal phase-out means

Climate & Clean Energy | November 28, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: What Canada's coal phase-out means

By Steve Kux, Climate Change & Energy Policy Analyst

On November 21, 2016 the federal government announced a plan to speed up the shift off coal, Canada's dirtiest power source. Under the new regulations, Canada will be free of conventional coal-fired electricity by 2030.
This is a major win for public health, the environment and the economy. The David Suzuki Foundation's climate team has been working on this issue for more than a decade.
This success would not have been possible without the tens of thousands of people who sent letters to the government through our "Say no to coal in Canada" online action. Thank you! We delivered an anti-coal letter to Parliament Hill, representing almost 35,000 people in Canada, on the day of the government's announcement.

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