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Posts Tagged ‘Wellington Waterwatchers’

The third Fresh Water Jamboree takes place this Saturday, August 7, from noon to 11 p.m. at the Riverside Park Bandshell.

The Fresh Water Jamboree is a free, annual one-day music festival established to help raise awareness about “fresh water” in Wellington County, the province of Ontario and across Canada. Be The Artist, a Guelph-based organization that promotes musicians and environmental initiatives, launched Guelph’s first “green” music festival in 2008.

“We’re expecting to see 600 or 700 people at the event this year,” says festival organizer Chris Williams. “We’ve had so many local musicians and artistic communities become involved in this event, it’s quite exciting.  The Fresh Water Jamboree was created to help bring focus and awareness to our depleting fresh water supply, and also to help promote local musicians and artists.”

The day-long event will feature musical performances by Sam Turton, Peter Slack, Carmela, Mike Sharp and many more. A presentation about  the importance of fresh water by Wellington Waterwatchers, with support from The City of Guelph, will take place at 7.00 p.m. Food and refreshments will also be available.

The water in Canada is at risk. We need to act now before it is too late. Our water resources are being depleted so fast that the possibility of no water resources here in Canada could become a reality. There are many countries that have been getting water from our resources and there are many more companies and countries who are in need because they don’t have fresh water in their own country. We need to act locally and think globally.
www.wellingtonwaterwatchers.ca

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Royal City Rag on March 20 had a distinctly environmental flavour.

We started off the show with a three song set featuring Daniel Lanois, Johnny Cash and James Gordon in honour of World Water Day, March 22

Wellington Waterwatchers have a very special event taking place that day in the EL Fox Auditorium at John F Ross Collegiate from 7-10 p.m. At the event, high school students from Wellington County will showcase art and science projects created as part of the group’s Message in the Bottle campaign.

The evening will also feature the Guelph premiere of  Tapped, an as yet unreleased documentary, by the producers of Who Killed The Electric Car, that takes a behind-the-scenes look into the unregulated bottled water industry.

Spokenword artist Evalyn Parry and local band and Royal City Rag favourites Dancehall Free for All will also perform.

There will also a chance to learn about  Blue W ( www.bluew.org ), a not-for-profit program dedicated to promoting municipal tap water as a healthy and waste-conscious alternative to bottled drinks.

Tickets are just $5 and available at The Bookshelf, at 10 Carden on Mondays and Wednesdays, and at the door. Students who have created a submission get in for free. The show starts at 7:00 pm and runs till 10:00 pm, but the doors will open at 6:00 pm to showcase submissions.

Celebrate World Water Day with Wellington Waterwatchers
Where: E.L. Fox Auditorium (J.F. Ross), 21 Meyer Dr. Guelph
When: March 22 from 7-10 p.m.
Tickets: $5, from The Bookshelf, at 10 Carden on Mondays and Wednesdays, and at the door.

 

Healthy Landscapes

Later in the first hour, we welcomed Karen McKeown back to the show to talk about Healthy Landscapes  the City of Guelph program to help people develop their own healthy, environmentally-sustainable garden at their home or place of business. 

Developing beautiful, healthy landscapes does not always mean hours of maintenance and ritualistic pesticide use. In fact, through some proper landscape planning, proactive maintenance, and proper plant selection, you will significantly reduce your requirements for weeding, watering, continued maintenance and eliminate the need for pesticides.

If you would like a free 30 minute on-site Landscape Assessment at your home or business address you can contact Karen McKeown at 519-822-1260 Ext. 2109 or healthylandscapes@guelph.ca.

Listen to Hour 1:



Trees

We started off the second hour of the show with a three song set about trees featuring Bruce Cockburn, Bluegrass Patriots and Kidzone. 

Guelph citizens have been waiting for a new stronger protective tree by-law for over 19 years. In the meantime we continue to lose mature trees and canopy. Guelph’s urban forest canopy sits at 25%, while the desired level  is 40%.

Local activist group, Guelph Urban Forest Friends (GUFF) are advocating for our urban trees, including a stronger protective tree bylaw and a separate urban forestry department with a certified forester to more effectively manage tree maintenance and coordinate public education on the value of our mature trees.

If you would like to help GUFF improve the lot of our urban trees, they can be contacted at guffguelph@gmail.com.

 

Pollination Guelph

Later in the second hour we were joined by Karen Landman, Professor of Landscape Architecture at the University of Guelph to talk about Pollination Guelph.

Photo: City of Guelph

Pollination Guelph is a group dedicated to conserving and developing pollinator habitat. In partnership with the City of Guelph, they are developing Ontario’s first large-scale Pollinator Park on the site of the old East View landfill. Their annual symposium takes place on March 27 at the Orchard Park Centre at the Ignatius Centre, 5420 Hwy 6 North, Guelph. This year’s theme is “Pollinator Plantings, Great and Small” and will feature a number of speakers, a silent auction, pollination-related materials for sale and booths with information on pollination, pollinators, and other ecological topics. The cost is $30 for pre-registrants, or $35 at the door. Pre-registrations can be sent to pollinationguelph@gmail.com.

Download a copy of the symposium program

Download a copy of the plans for the Pollinator Park

Listen to Hour 2:

Music:
Daniel Lanois, Still Water from Acadie
Johnny Cash, Cool Water from American VI: Ain’t No Grave
James Gordon, Scam Of The Century from Just West Of Something Big
Bumblejums, Gardening from Meet The Bumblejums
Mo’ Kauffey, Dig It from Dig It
Bruce Cockburn, If A Tree Falls from Anything Anytime Anywhere
Bluegrass Patriots, Why Do You Weep Dear Willow? from Springtime In the Rockies
Kidzone, Plant A Tree from Reduce Reuse Recycle
Darren Archer, Pollination from Amnesia
Denim Dirt Farmers, Pollination Dance from Salad Days
Big Mama Thornton, Big Mama’s Bumblebee Blues from With The Muddy Waters Blues Band

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Royal City Rag on March 20 will have a distinctly environmental flavour. As Spring is in the air, its time to think about how you will manage your garden this coming growing season.

In the first hour we’ll be talking about how you can develop your own healthy, environmentally-sustainable landscape at your home or place of business.

Developing beautiful, healthy landscapes does not always mean hours of maintenance and ritualistic pesticide use. In fact, through some proper landscape planning, proactive maintenance, and proper plant selection, you will significantly reduce your requirements for weeding, watering, continued maintenance and eliminate the need for pesticides.

We’ll be welcoming back to the show Karen McKeown, from the City of Guelph Healthy Landscapes  program to discuss why you should take advantage of a free Landscape Assessment this year.  She’ll also be updating us on some upcoming gardening events and lectures.

Pollinating Bee on a Dandelion (Photo courtesy: City of Guelph)

In the second hour of the show we will be joined by Councillor Vicki Beard from the City of Guelph and Landscape Architecture Professor at the University of Guelph Karen Landman to talk about the work of Pollination Guelph.

Pollination Guelph is a group dedicated to conserving and developing pollinator habitat. In partnership with the City of Guelph, they are developing Ontario’s first large-scale Pollinator Park on the site of the old East View landfill.  

Their annual Pollination Symposium takes place on March 27 at the Orchard ParkCentre at the Ignatius Centre, 5420 Hwy 6 North, Guelph. This year’s theme is “Pollinator Plantings, Great and Small” and will feature a number of speakers, a silent auction, pollination-related materials for sale and booths with information on pollination, pollinators, and other ecological topics.

The cost is $30 for pre-registrants, or $35 at the door. Pre-registrations can be sent to pollinationguelph@gmail.com.

Download a copy of the program

To top it all off, we’ll also be reminding you about Guelph Urban Forest Friends “Little Art for Big Trees” art show taking place at 10 Carden on March 2o from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. and Wellington Waterwatchers’ special event to “Celebrate World Water Day”taking place in the EL Fox Auditorium at John F Ross Collegiate on March 22 from 7-10 p.m.

As always there will be a lot of cool music thrown in for good measure. Sounds like a great show. You won’t want to miss it!

Royal City Rag, Saturdays 7-9 a.m. on CFRU93.3fm, Guelph’s Campus-Community Radio Station.

Remember if you don’t catch Royal City Rag live on CFRU93.3fm, you can pick it up later that day via the CFRU archive or here, on the blog, the next day.

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Wellington Waterwatchers will be celebrating World Water Day, Monday March 22, with a special event in the E.L. Fox Auditorium at J.F. Ross Collegiate, from 7-10 p.m.

This will be an opportunity to hear from our youth about what they think about water, something we all take far too much for granted.

High school students throughout Wellington County have been creating submissions through Wellington Waterwatchers Message in the Bottle campaign. They will be showcasing their work;  art pieces, performance pieces, and science projects. All are designed to express how valuable our water is to us, and why we need to protect and conserve this lifeline of ours.

The emcee for the event will be Derek Forgie, while spokenword artist Evalyn Parry will also perform.

The evening will also feature the Guelph premiere of  Tapped, the as yet unreleased documentary, by the producers of Who Killed The Electric Car, that takes a behind-the-scenes look into the unregulated bottled water industry.

There will also a chance to learn about  Blue W ( www.bluew.org ) a not-for-profit program dedicated to promoting municipal tap water as a healthy and waste-conscious alternative to bottled drinks.

Local band and Royal City Rag favourites Dancehall Free for All will ensure that the whole evening goes with a swing!

Tickets are just $5 and available at The Bookshelf, at 10 Carden on Mondays and Wednesdays, and at the door. Students who have created a submission get in for free. The show starts at 7:00 pm and runs till 10:00 pm, but the doors will open at 6:00 pm to showcase submissions.

Celebrate World Water Day on March 22 with Wellington Waterwatchers!

What: Celebrate World Water Day with Wellington Waterwatchers
Where: E.L. Fox Auditorium (J.F. Ross), 21 Meyer Dr. Guelph
When: March 22 from 7-10 p.m.
Tickets: $5, from The Bookshelf, at 10 Carden on Mondays and Wednesdays, and at the door. Students who have created a submission get in for free

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Celebrate the season at this first-ever collaborative event with all your favourite green-minded, socially conscious organisations.

Participating organisations include:

Enjoy complimentary appetizers and grooves by DJ Dino.

Tuesday December 15, 8:30 p.m. Upstairs at the Albion

Admission: a non-perishable food donation for the Guelph Food Bank

More information: Arlene.slocombe@gmail.com

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Carson Reid Clearcut web

Clear-cutting on Victoria Road, June 2009

The City of Guelph have laid 151 charges against three companies as a result of an investigation into clear-cutting in the south-east end of Guelph on land owned by the developer, Carson Reid.

The incident occurred in June at 2007 Victoria Road South. The City’s By-law Compliance and Enforcement Officers completed their investigation into the incident in September, and charges are scheduled for a first appearance before the Ontario Court of Justice – Provincial Offences division on November 23, 2009.

Under the City of Guelph’s tree by-law, it is an offence to injure or destroy a tree, or cause or permit a tree to be injured or destroyed within the city. If found guilty of such an offence, a person or an organization could be subject to a fine between $500 and $2,000 per offence.

Although this by-law is not as protective as local tree activists, Guff Guelph, would like, it’s good that the city are taking a firm stand on this incident.

Its also interesting to note that Carson Reid also own River Valley Developments, the quarry at the centre 0f serious concern about blasting below the aquitard, the protective layer over our local aquifer (see Wellington Waterwatchers Press release below).

 

WELLINGTON WATERWATCHERS PRESS RELEASE
October 16, 2009

Continued quarrying is threatening Guelph’s Water Supply while Provincial Ministries stall.

Wellington Water Watchers, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection, restoration and conservation of drinking water in Guelph and Wellington County, are gravely concerned about the threat to the City of Guelph’s drinking water supply resulting from continued blasting at the DoLime Quarry. Blasting at the quarry can create cracks and breaches in the Eramosa formation of the aquitard, which forms the protective layer over our local aquifer. Cracks in the aquitard create the possibility for surface water contamination of our pristine drinking water source. The initial breach of the aquitard was discovered almost a year ago. Despite numerous queries and complaints about the potential threat to our drinking water, and despite requests from the City of Guelph that the blasting be stopped, the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Ministry of the Environment have allowed continued operations while information is gathered. Each and every subsequent blast has the potential of creating additional cracks in the aquitard, further exposing our aquifer to the possibility of surface water contamination.

There are many citizens of Guelph who are fed up with the inaction by the regulator. The quarry owner, River Valley Developments, is a division of Carson Reid. Carson Reid is the same company that was charged after unauthorized clear-cutting was discovered this past June at a property on Victoria Rd. Further blasting at the quarry poses a severe and immediate threat to our drinking water. The quarry has been in operation for over a hundred years and all the rock that can be safely removed, has already been removed.

“ We are asking our MPP Liz Sandals, and the two Provincial Ministries responsible to immediately take action and cancel this quarry operator’s permits”, said Wellington Water Watchers Executive Director, Arlene Slocombe.

“The DoLime quarry should be closed immediately based on risk assessment – there is no justification on continuing with mining there within the protective layer of the aquifer system”,  said Hugh Whiteley PhD

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Hanlon Creek Downstream In The Spring (Photo: Bob Gordon)

Hanlon Creek Downstream In The Spring (Photo: Bob Gordon)

This article was originally posted by Wellington Waterwatchers on their website on March 3, 2009.

I thought it would be a good idea to re-post it here to remind people why well-known and respected local organizations like Wellington Waterwatchers, the Guelph Chapter of the Council of Canadians, Guelph Urban Forest Friends and the Sierra Club have all expressed serious concerns about the current plans for the Hanlon Creek Business Park.

 

Hanlon Creek Business Park threatens the sustainability of Guelph’s Water Supply
Wellington Waterwatchers

We acknowledge the necessity for more economic development and additional opportunities for business growth in our community. We desire sustainability in such growth. The initial Hanlon Creek Business Park (HCBP) plan was envisioned originally as a ‘green’ initiative, with low impact development practices aimed at preserving provincially significant wetlands and old-growth trees found in the area between Downey Road and the Hanlon Expressway.

However the latest plans are not consistent with this ‘green’ plan.  It appears that cost-effectiveness has taken priority over low impact development goals.  In the SHORT term, the plan calls for over 500 acres to be affected, of which as much as 75% may be paved or built over. This plan would dramatically effect a water catchment area which is crucial to the Downey Well and the groundwater recharge of the Paris-Galt Moraine.  The Moraine is a critical source of municipal water supply for Guelph and surrounding area. The Guelph-Puslinch Groundwater Protection Study from 2005 states that increased industrial activity in this sensitive area raises the potential for toxic materials to seep into our drinking water.

There are over 1700  trees, 60 biodiverse hedgerows, plants and up to 4 ft. of topsoil.  Bulldozers and graders will entirely disrupt the soil integrity which will be mass graded for levelling high areas  to low areas. Included in this tree count is a remnant of old-growth forest that has been identified SINCE the development plan was approved in 2005. The Sierra Club of Canada has expressed serious concerns about grading this entire site before businesses have even agreed to locate there. Other communities with similar developments in uncertain economic times have been left with costly unused “Moonscapes”. We believe that more thought should be put into the scope and planning of the HCBP so that the wetland, recharge zones and old growth forest are preserved.

The Paris-Galt Moraine has not been fully mapped. Mayor Karen Farbridge and MPP Liz Sandals requested that the Minister of the Environment protect the Moraine as it overlies Guelph’s drinking water.  We have been questioning all along the wisdom of giving our water away to commercial water bottlers in our area without properly identifying whether our water supply can sustain us through the exponential growth predicted for our city. It is important not to threaten this high quality water supply more with this plan that seems out of step with our current awareness of its potential for environmental damage?

We believe that the City is missing a golden opportunity to be an effective leader in the province by planning a development that can be sensitive to the environment while at the same time provide a sustainable economic opportunity.

Along with a number of other citizens groups, we would like to be able to bring this issue to the City of Guelph Council to help address our concerns. We were surprised and disappointed to learn that there are no plans to bring this matter back to City Council except to examine the tenders offered for the construction of the business park.  This appears to be very premature considering the current economic times and lack of excess public funds.

To us, this does not appear to be within the spirit of the City of Guelph’s mandate for transparency and accountability.

We urge you to write to Mayor Farbridge and City of Guelph councilors to ask, based on the new economic and environmental climate, that the Hanlon Creek Business Park development plans be revisited.

Mayor Farbridge: mayor@guelph.ca

Ward 1: Bob Bell bob.bell@guelph.ca, Kathleen Farrelly kathleen.farrelly@guelph.ca
Ward 2: Vicki Beard vicki.beard@guelph.ca, Ian Findlay ian.findlay@guelph.ca
Ward 3: Maggie Laidlaw maggie.laidlaw@guelph.ca, June Hofland june.hofland@guelph.ca
Ward 4: Gloria Kovach gloria.kovach@guelph.ca, Mike Salisbury mike.salisbury@guelph.ca
Ward 5: Lise Burcher lise.burcher@guelph.ca, Leanne Piper leanne.piper@guelph.ca
Ward 6: Christine Billings christine.billings@guelph.ca, Karl Wettstein karl.wettstein@guelph.ca

Don’t know your ward? Click here to see the map.

Thanks as always for your ongoing support.

For more background information on the Hanlon Creek Business Park, please see this timeline.

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