Edmonton’s breakthrough will almost certainly become standard practice in major cities across North America, as it addresses two problems at once: landfill space and carbon dioxide emissions.
"This morning, I was proud to shake Edmonton Mayor Dan Iveson’s hand and congratulate the City of Edmonton on being named Canada’s Earth Hour City Capital for 2014."
Edmonton was the first major city in Canada to implement curbside recycling, and since its inception in 1988 Edmontonians have set out enough recycling to form a convoy of trucks from Edmonton to Lake Superior, Ontario, a distance of approximately 2,500 kilometres.
"The City of Edmonton is experiencing heightened levels of smog Wednesday, a problem expected to continue at least into Thursday. Air quality is at a 7 or “high risk” on the provincial Air Quality Health Index, which operates on a scale of 1 to 10."
As of Jan. 1, vehicles can’t idle for more than five minutes per half-hour when the temperature is above zero. School buses, ambulances, taxis and other vehicles licensed for transporting people are exempt.
Many years ago, the City used to dump snow removed from roads directly into the river but this raised environmental concerns due to the amount of salt and sediments entering the North Saskatchewan River. For that reason, snow storage facilities were built around Edmonton during the 1980s.
Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel and Chief Financial Officer Lorna Rosen announced that the City will internationally market the waste management expertise of the City and its partners, through a corporation wholly owned by the City. Waste RE-Solutions Edmonton is the name of the corporation for conducting this marketing effort.
The amount of fecal coliform entering the North Saskatchewan River from Edmonton has now dropped to levels last seen in 1910, according to monitoring and data modelling from the city’s drainage department.
"Areas along Edmonton’s river valley may see as much as a 1.5-metre increase in water levels by Friday afternoon. Alberta Environment and Water has issued a high streamflow advisory for the North Saskatchewan River and its tributaries, both upstream and downstream of Rocky Mountain House. The watch level is rising and water levels are expected to peak in Edmonton on Friday."
Mayor Stephen Mandel will lead a mission to China starting on April 3, 2012 along with senior administration, economic development and education officials and Edmonton business leaders. The primary focus of the Asian mission is to promote industrial business opportunities and advantages. The tour will include stops in Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong, Singapore and Harbin, Edmonton’s sister city.
According to Epcor, the city used 1082 megawatts of power between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday night, a 3.4 per cent drop from the same day and time the week before. In 2011, power usage actually jumped by 1.01 per cent during Earth Hour in Edmonton, likely due to cold temperatures.
"A team of University of Alberta students unveiled their EcoCar on Monday at the Engineering Teaching and Research Complex before heading to Houston to enter the 300-pound wonder in a competition."
Edmonton’s waste management system is known as one of the most innovative in the world and that reputation earned Edmonton a spot on a special episode of the Nature of Things called The Suzuki Diaries: Future City.
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