Posts filed under ‘Biodiversity’

SD&G exploring controls to halt depleting forest

The United Counties is looking at a broad set of tools, including land control laws, in a bid to stop the dwindling forest cover.

SD&G Planner Alison McDonald presented the plan to a committee of the whole session of county council this morning (Thursday).

“The balance is shifting…perhaps shifting too far,” McDonald said, noting the cover had dropped below 29 per cent in 2014 and below the widely-held benchmark of 30 per cent.

Part of the problem, McDonald explained, is land owners are secretly clear-cutting forest or filling in wetlands ahead of applying for a permit to build a subdivision or proceed with other developments. “Landowners are getting savvy,” knowing there are few people on the ground to catch them.

Read SD&G exploring controls to halt depleting forest at Cornwall Newswatch.

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July 18, 2018 at 10:02 am Leave a comment

Connecting nature, culture and community

This Thursday is Summer Solstice; the longest day of the year and the official beginning of the summer season. It also happens to be National Indigenous Peoples Day, and Cornwall Transition+ is planning events throughout the day to celebrate all three aspects.

The events’ head organizer, Susan Towndrow, said the group wanted to plan a day that would help people get back in tune with nature.

“This is the longest day of the year so we had this idea of celebrating the sunrise and the sunset as a way of connecting people with nature and bringing us back into the rhythms of life,” she said.

The day will start bright and early at 5 a.m. with a Tai Chi session in Lamoureux Park led by Fung Loy Kok Taoist Tai Chi. People will be meeting by the gazebo at the boat launch, and beginners are encouraged to come out to greet the sun as well.

Read Connecting nature, culture and community by Alan S. Hale in the Cornwall Standard-Freeholder.

June 20, 2018 at 10:01 am Leave a comment

Climate change impacts on birds we love

What will climate change mean for the more than 45 million American birdwatchers? Much more importantly, what will it mean for the birds we most love and enjoy?

In Case You Missed It

With birds finely tuned to their living conditions – landscape, vegetation, weather, food, water – we know that a warming globe will add to the problems they already face.

The Audubon Society’s “Birds and Climate Report” website offers a useful overview. At the site’s core: its maps of changing climate ranges for 588 North American species, over half of them heading for trouble.

Read Climate change impacts on birds we love at Yale Climate Connections.

June 18, 2018 at 11:00 am Leave a comment

Provincial Party Responses 2018

Make your vote count: find out where the parties stand. The next Government of Ontario will inherit a province facing many significant environmental challenges, from climate change and ongoing loss of biodiversity to a steady build up of toxics and pollutants in our air, water and land.  Strong actions will be required to address these problems and to position Ontario to benefit in a world rapidly moving toward a low-carbon future and embracing the need for more sustainable economic and social systems. We asked all parties to describe their vision for making Ontario an environmental leader and how they will enhance the quality of life of all of its residents.

We have invited all four parties to submit any additional policies or information as the election progresses, and we will note when new information has been added.

Read Party Responses 2018 at Green Prosperity.

June 4, 2018 at 10:37 am Leave a comment

Garden Plan For Pollinators

Many pollinator species have suffered serious declines in recent years. Unfortunately, most of our landscapes offer little in the way of appropriate habitat, forage, and housing. Even the most beautiful gardens are not always healthy ecosystems. Design choices, plant selections, and maintenance practices can make a huge difference in creating your own healthy ecosystem, filled with life. As a garden designer, I use this landscape plan for many gardens to attract the greatest varieties of pollinators.

A pollinator garden can be beautiful as well as useful. Strategies such as planting in groups of at least 3 to 5 plants is very important. A single plant won’t attract pollinators, but groups of same plants stand out and pollinators use less energy flying to a compact group of flowers.

Read Garden Plan For Pollinators by Claire Jones at Mother Earth News.

May 30, 2018 at 10:23 am Leave a comment

How to fight Insectageddon with a garden of native plants

People across North America love to garden, yet the vast majority of garden plants are non-native species.

Day-lilies, peonies, roses, chrysanthemums and butterfly bushes, just to name a few, are all non-natives. They evolved in far-away places such as Europe and Asia and people transported them to North America.

With Insectageddon — the great insect die-off — upon us, it’s time to rethink our gardens.

Birds (and other larger animals) depend on bugs. “Nearly all terrestrial birds rear their young on insects, not seeds or berries,” writes Doug Tallamy in his book Bringing Nature Home.

A simple way to think of it is this: Native plants maintain natural ecosystem food webs, whereas non-native plants don’t. Native plants will attract and support healthy insect populations in your garden, which will provide essential food for birds and other animals.

Read How to fight Insectageddon with a garden of native plants by Nina N. Zitani at The Conversation.

March 26, 2018 at 10:51 am Leave a comment

Total ban on bee-harming pesticides likely after major new EU analysis

Analysis from EU’s scientific risk assessors finds neonicotinoids pose a serious danger to all bees, making total field ban highly likely.

The world’s most widely used insecticides pose a serious danger to both honeybees and wild bees, according to a major new assessment from the European Union’s scientific risk assessors.

The conclusion, based on analysis of more than 1,500 studies, makes it highly likely that the neonicotinoid pesticides will be banned from all fields across the EU when nations vote on the issue next month.

Read Total ban on bee-harming pesticides likely after major new EU analysis by Damian Carrington at The Guardian.

March 7, 2018 at 11:49 am Leave a comment

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