Get the latest on The City's flood recovery

Thursday, June 7, 2012

City monitors spring melt

The City of Calgary continues to monitor spring snow melt conditions in the Bow and Elbow Rivers.

If weather conditions continue as forecast there is cautious optimism that potential flood risks can be safely managed.

The most pressing concerns at present are that Calgarians treat the current rapid water flows on the City’s waterways with extreme caution.

Bow and Elbow rivers advisory

A combination of recent rain fall and continued snow pack melting in the mountains has resulted in rapid flow and increased debris in the Bow and Elbow rivers – creating conditions that are hazardous for anyone on the water.

The Calgary Fire Department (CFD) advises Calgarians against partaking in boating activities or placing any type of watercraft on these waterways until further notice.

As fast-moving water can cause the banks to collapse, Calgarians are also advised to stay off of river banks.

CFD is also issuing an additional caution that increased water levels and flow rates may increase the hydraulics on the Class 2 and 3 rapids at Harvie Passage. This means that an increased level of experience and skill is required by those attempting to clear the rapids.

All river users are advised to use extreme caution and to know the risks. Conditions on the river can change quickly. All users should be prepared for a variety of conditions and should always be wearing a life jacket or PFD on the water.

Glenmore Reservoir closed to recreational users

The City of Calgary has implemented a ban on recreational uses of Glenmore Reservoir.

The water level has been dropped to accommodate heavy flow from upstream caused by the recent rainfall.

In the interest of citizen safety, the public is asked to stay off the Reservoir until further notice. The condition of the Glenmore Reservoir will be reviewed on a daily basis.

Updates are available on Calgary.ca at this website.


City of Calgary Parks and Pathways

City of Calgary Parks are monitoring all parks and pathways. At this time, all pathway underpasses along the Bow and Elbow Rivers are closed due to high water levels, and will remain closed until further notice.

Updated pathway closures due to flooding are available on Calgary.ca at this website.


The Green Team tackles waste in their school

The Green Team at Our Lady of Evergreens School reduced their noon-hour garbage by 50 per cent in just four months.

Their Showcase School project for the 2012 Mayor’s Environment Expo focused on waste reduction. Every noon-hour, grade five “police” students made sure paper and plastics were placed in the proper bins to be recycled, while grade four students took turns rinsing out recyclable plastic containers.

In September of last year the school filled two full garbage cans at each and every noon hour, but by December, the Green Team had reduced the school’s waste to one garbage can!

“These kids are volunteering during their lunch hour. They are demonstrating responsibility and that they truly care about the environment,” says teacher, Peter Zombik. “It‘s exciting to see how passionate they are when they share their waste reduction secrets to their parents, their peers and other adults in the building.”

Join us at the 2012 Mayor’s Environment Expo, June 5-7 at the Municipal Building and be inspired by today’s youth leaders.

Read about what other Showcase Schools are doing to protect land, air and water.

The Mayor’s Environment Expo thanks Encana and Calgary Transit for their partnership in the Showcase School program. Encana is sponsoring a $250 grant exclusive to the Showcase Schools. Calgary Transit is providing Showcase Schools with free transportation to and from the Expo.

The Power of One

Calgarians of all ages were inspired to find their passion and take steps to protect our environment at a special event yesterday as part of the Mayor’s Environment Expo.

Simon Jackson, founder of the Spirit Bear Youth Coalition, hosted a free public presentation on his own special form of global environmental activism.

“By sharing my journey to save the endangered spirit bear, I hope to showcase the difference one person can make and illustrate that through innovation and determination, there is hope for what ills the environment,” said Jackson.

“My story is remarkable in that it’s unremarkable: anyone can do what I've done for any issue that they believe in.”

The most important lesson he learned in life was that anybody can make a difference in the world.

The presentation clearly had an impact on those in attendance, in particular Joelle Hass and Kevin Hans, grade nine students at St. James Junior High School and guest emcees for the presentation.

“Simon Jackson is an inspiration to youth across the globe because he symbolizes what we can accomplish,” said Hass.

“Everyone can see the problems our planet is facing. The difference is that only half of us can see how to fix them and only half of them will actually do something about it.

At the Mayor’s Expo, youth meet other youth who are changing the world. It gives students a chance to voice their opinions, ideas, and plans.”

Inspired by Jackson, St. James Junior High School’s global leadership class participated in this year’s Mayor’s Environment Expo as a Showcase School. Their class project, Global Leadership – Visions of Tomorrow, included a castle of various environmental projects that the students were working on

Join us at the 2012 Mayor’s Environment Expo, June 5-7 at the Municipal Building and be inspired by today’s youth leaders.

Read about the actions the Showcase Schools are taking to protect land, air and water.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A Bright Future in the Dark

Would you pay attention to how much money you spent on energy if you were constantly reminded? The Ecoleague Club at Tom Baines School set out to find out.
The Tom Baines School's Ecoleague Club
For their 2012 Mayor's Environment Expo Showcase School project, students were provided energy monitors to take home. The monitors documented how much energy common household appliances used and then offered the students clear direction for actions their families could take to reduce the energy usage. When the results were tallied, students found a 20 per cent reduction in energy consumption as a result of their monitoring efforts.

Additionally, they used a grant from ConocoPhillips to install motion-detecting light switches in their school. These switches drastically reduced the school’s energy consumption.

“We need to continue to be conscious of our actions," says Grade 9 student Priyanka Khiroya. “We take energy for granted. A lot of people in the world don’t have the privilege to light up their homes every night and we tend to forget that.”

“The projects have made an amazing awareness not only in the school but the students have brought the information they learned home and into their communities,” explains teacher, Ryan Morgan. “It’s making a positive difference across the board.”

Their project isn't just about energy reduction; awareness played a big part in their project's goal. And to that end they ensured the Ecoleague Club involved their entire school using games, prizes and pictures.

Join us at the 2012 Mayor’s Environment Expo, June 5-7 at the Municipal Building and be inspired by today’s youth leaders.

Read more about what other Showcase Schools are doing to protect land, air and water.

The Mayor’s Environment Expo thanks Encana and Calgary Transit for their partnership in the Showcase School program. Encana is sponsoring a $250 grant exclusive to the Showcase Schools. Calgary Transit is providing Showcase Schools with free transportation to and from the Expo.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Mayor Nenshi opens the 23rd annual Mayor's Environment Expo

Mayor Nenshi at Blessed Cardinal Newman school's exhibit
Today marked the first day of the 23rd annual Mayor’s Environment Expo and Mayor Naheed Nenshi was on hand to welcome groups of students ready to strut their eco-stuff over the event’s three days.

“So many Calgarians are taking action to help protect the environment, and this expo highlights just some of the great work being done by our youth,” says Mayor Nenshi. “The environmental leadership of Calgarians of all ages is inspiring.”

Mayor Nenshi spent time with youth leaders to explore environmental actions including composting, energy conservation, and waste reduction. Presentations were given by four of the eleven schools participating in the Expo’s year-long Showcase School program. Each of the projects undertaken by the Showcase Schools are featured on Calgary.ca.

The Mayor’s Environment Expo is Calgary’s premiere event in celebration of National Environment Week. All Calgarians are encouraged to take action to improve the environment in our city. It may even be one of your 3 Things for Calgary!

The Expo runs June 5 to 7 at the Municipal Building - come and be inspired by today’s youth leaders.

Pets of the Week - Four Precious Pussycats



This week’s Pet of the Week features four fantastic felines!

Now that spring is in full swing, why not celebrate by adding some flowers to your home?

Daffodil (A528814)
Daffodil is a 1 year old brown tabby.  She is a very curious girl who loves to play.  Don’t pass her  by!

Lilac (A528698)
Lilac is about 1.5 years old.  She is a  loveable brown tabby who is ready for a lifetime commitment.

Rose (A459051)
Rose is a sweet grey tabby who would love to get adopted with her sister Tulip.  It’s always a great idea to have an assortment of flowers in your home!

Tulip (A495050)
Tulips and Roses are a great combination!  That’s why this Tulip would love to be adopted with her sister Rose. You can never have too much kitty love!


See all our adoptable animals at www.calgary.ca/animalservices or by downloading the City of Calgary Pets app for your smartphone.

Adoptable animals can also be viewed in person at the Animal Services Centre located at 2201 Portland St. S.E.

For more information call 3-1-1.

Onward/ All adoptable homeless pets are given a chance at finding a loving home. | 2020 Sustainability Direction: By 2020, no adoptable pet is euthanized.

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Calgary Fire Department has a new member on duty

At only 20 months old, and weighing in at just 52 pounds, Labrador retriever Honey may seem like an unlikely recruit for the Calgary Fire Department (CFD). But her ability to accurately detect flammable liquids – with far greater accuracy than hydrocarbon detection devices – makes her a great fit for the team. With her partner, fire investigator Brad McDonald, she’ll help investigate fire scenes under investigation.

“Honey has a great temperament that makes her well suited to the job,” says McDonald. “She’s a great asset to fire investigations and prevention, and I look forward to seeing the success she’ll bring to CFD as a whole.”

Brad and Honey only recently returned to Calgary after completing five weeks of specialized training through State Farm Insurance’s accelerant detection canine sponsorship program. The scholarship-based program was established in 1993, after evidence of the success of canines in fire investigations began to be established. For State Farm, the program offers another tool to appropriately deliver on insurance claims where property, or more importantly, lives were lost.

Before taking the program, Brad and CFD were subject to an intense application and fund development process. Encana Corporation stepped forward with the offer of a five-year partnership to provide Brad and Honey with support for day to day operating expenses including Honey’s care, feeding, annual re-certification and equipment – including a natural gas-fuelled truck – to start the new team on the right foot.

With 168 fires in Calgary confirmed to be the result of arson over the last three years, Honey will undoubtedly be a valuable resource in fire investigation and prevention.



Honey was spayed, micro-chipped and licensed through the City of Calgary's Animal & Bylaw Services. The Calgary Fire Department is committed to taking the lead as an example of what it means to be a responsible pet owner.


Team Solar Panel goes off the grid

McKenzie Lake School’s Team Solar Panel have become experts in growing plants and are proud supporters of the Slow Food Movement (communities who practice small-scale and sustainable production of quality foods).

For their 2012 Mayor’s Environment Expo Showcase School Project, these students investigated solar energy as an alternative way to provide energy for plant growth. Each class was responsible for two earth boxes, donated to the school by Alberta Agriculture. One box was lit using solar panels and the other used natural light.

While the Team found there wasn’t much difference between using solar panels and natural light, they learned a lot about conserving energy and growing vegetables. From pea shoots to basil, they had oodles of fun watching their crops grow. And like a good farm to fork operation, they took a lot of pride in cooking – and eating! – the food they grew.

“The grade ones are eating much healthier,” says teacher Kathleen Brennan. “They’ve started ‘Fun Food Fridays’ where they cook from real ingredients. We found when kids make the meal, they’ll eat it all themselves.”

Read about what other showcase schools are doing to protect land, air and water.

Join us at the 2012 Mayor’s Environment Expo, June 5-7 at the Municipal Building and be inspired by today’s youth leaders.

The Mayor’s Environment Expo thanks Encana and Calgary Transit for their partnership in the Showcase School program. Encana is sponsoring a $250 grant exclusive to the Showcase Schools. Calgary Transit is providing Showcase Schools with free transportation to and from the Expo.