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Think Before You Leap: The colleges, the universities and the exemplary stories of excellence.

University of Manitoba's Nicola Koper and her team's innovative approach to experimentation is for the birds. They are testing the impacts of energy development on our Prairie feathered friends.

The 2018 Environmental Education Guide

A\J has provided Canada's prospective students with a directory of post-secondary environmental schools and programs across Canada for the last 19 years. The guide showcases programs across Canada that provide exciting and unique approaches to environmental education.

The guide includes seven innovative "Stories of Excellence." We hope that these stories help you choose a school that delivers its programs in a way that inspires you. Whether you want to focus on community engagement or have access to the best laboratories for your creative work, we hope these stories will help you find a school that fits your personal needs for growth and development.

"BUILD AN EDUCATION GUIDE they told me Easy, I replied. Turns out, it's not. While on the surface it may seem like a simple task, building an education guide is quite complex. For example, in this edition of the guide you'll see we've included an indicator for whether or not a school has a sustainability co-ordinator. This one piece of information is important because if the school has a sustainability co-ordinator, it means that they're investing in sustainability-based community development.

However, we need to be careful here. There are three growing activities and campaigns on campuses to increase overall sustainability: the sustainability co-ordinator or office is one, and the other two are farmers' markets and divestment campaigns (campaigns calling on universities to move their investments away from fossil fuels). Because of these trends, the initial guide included all three as indicators for every school and college, until an unfortunate, but very real, problem emerged.

If you look up the schools with divestment student action groups, farmers' markets, and (to a smaller extent) sustainability co-ordinators, you'll see mainly the "big" schools, in big cities, and south of 60[degrees] latitude. A clear issue of distortion based on school size and privilege starts to emerge. Only schools with easy access to farmers can have farmers' markets, or large enough populations to create enough demand for a campus market. Only schools with funds to invest can have divestment campaigns. Only schools with significant budgets can afford sustainability co-ordinators.

Meanwhile, all the advantages, both environmental and academic, of smaller schools go unnoticed if these three categories are our only indicators of sustainable action. Smaller schools' environmental initiatives, while less visible, tend to have a comparably bigger local and individual impact. Schools of any size can meet your sustainability goals, but in different ways.

See? It's complex.

So we've included a basic selection of indicators to help you narrow down your decision (see the legend). Our advice to you is once you've focused on your area of study and used this guide to narrow down your search to a few institutions, do some additional research. Look into what kinds of sustainability student groups exist, how often the students get out into the community, the school's commitment to experiential education, and the research interests of the professors that will be teaching you.

After you've narrowed your search to a few schools based on their programs and sustainability activity, look beyond the campus walls into the community. Do you want to be close to water? A forest?

A city centre? Tundra? Canada can offer all ofthese. Schools will also have opportunities for you to travel and study abroad. If that's something very important to you, look into the school's partnered destinations. Schools also partner up with companies, organizations and government bodies to provide co-operative education. Contact the school's co-op education office to see if there are partnerships that appeal to you.

Never be afraid to contact the admissions office and ask them questions or for a tour. They'll connect you with a student to take you around the campus. If you're able, always visit a campus before you decide to apply to it. The "feel" you get when you're on a university or college campus is an important part of the next few years of your life.

This guide is just the beginning of your post-secondary process. Don't be dazzled by slick promotional campaigns. Instead, look deeper and think about the kind of community you want to be a part of. What kind of school promotes your values? Where will you get the best kind of education for yourself?

We have a comprehensive listing of all the colleges and universities with environmental programs in print here and online at ajmag.ca/collegeanduniversityprograms. Explore and have fun.

Katie Kish is associate publisher of A\J and just celebrated competing her PhD at the University of Waterloo's School for Environment, Resources, and Sustainability. She is currently at McGill as a postdoc researcher with Economics for the Anthropocene.

Territories

Aurora College

Inuvik, Fort Smith, Yellowknife, NWT |

auroracollege.nt.ca

B, C/D

SM

Nunavut Arctic College

Arviat, Cambridge Bay, Rankin Inlet,

Iqaluit, Igloolik, Baker Lake, NU |

arcticcollege.ca

B, C/D

SM

Yukon College

Whitehorse, Faro, Teslin, Watson

Lake, Mayo, Ross River, Pelly

Crossing, Carmacks, Haines Junction,

Carcross, Old Crow, Dawson City, YT

| yukoncollege.yk.ca

B,C/D

MD

British Columbia

British Columbia Institute of

Technology

Burnaby, Vancouver, Richmond, Delta

| bcit.ca

B, M, D/C

MD

Camosun College

Victoria | camosun.ca

B, A, D/C

MD

Co

Capilano University

North Vancouver, Sunshine Coast |

capilanou.ca

B, A,C/D

MD

College of the Rockies

Cranbrook | cotr.bc.ca

B, A, C/D

SM

Douglas College

New Westminster, Coquitlam |

douglascollege.ca

A, B

LG

Co

Kwantlen Polytechnic University

Richmond, Langley, Surrey,

Cloverdale | kpu.ca

B, A, C/D

MD

Co

Langara College

Vancouver | langara.be.ca

B, A, C/D

MD

Co

Nicola Valley Institute of

Technology

Merritt, Vancouver | nvit.ca

B, A, C/D

SM

North Island College

Comox, Campbell River, Port Alberni,

Port Hardy, Ucluelet | nic.bc.ca

B, A, C/D

SM

Northwest Community College

Hazelton, Masset, Queen Charlotte,

Prince Rupert, Smithers, Kitimat,

Terrace | nwcc.bc.ca

A, C/D

SM

Okanagan College

Multiple campuses | okanagan.bc.ca

B, A, C/D

MD

Royal Roads University

Victoria | royalroads.ca

B, M, P

MD

Selkirk College

Castlegar, Nelson, Trail | selkirk.ca

B, A, C/D

SM

Co

Simon Fraser University

Burnaby, Surrey, Vancouver | sfu.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG

Co

Thompson Rivers University

Kamloops, Williams Lake | tru.ca

B, M, C/D

MD

Co

Trinity Western University

Langley, Richmond, Salt Spring Island,

BC, Ottawa, ON | twu.ca

B, M, C/D

SM

Co

University of British Columbia

Vancouver, Kelowna | ubc.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG (Okanagan Campus: MD)

Co

University of the Fraser Valley

Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Mission,

Hope | ufv.ca

B, M, A, C/D

MD

SC

Co

University of Northern BC

Prince George, Fort St. John, Terrace,

Quesnel | unbc.ca

B, M, P, C/D

SM

SC * Co

University of Victoria

Victoria | uvic.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG

Co

Vancouver Island University

Nanaimo, Cowichan, Powell River |

viu.ca

B, M

MD * Co

Alberta

Concordia University of Edmonton

Edmonton | concordia.ab.ca

B,C/D

SM

Grande Prairie Regional College

Grande Prairie | gprc.ab.ca

B

SM

Keyano College

Fort McMurray | keyano.ca

B, C/D

LG

The King's University

Edmonton | kingsu.ca

B, C/D

SM

Lakeland College

Lloydminster | lakelandcollege.ca

B, C/D

SM

Lethbridge College

Lethbridge | lethbridgecollege.ca

B, C/D

SM

Medicine Hat College

Medicine Hat | mhc.ab.ca

C/D

SM

Mount Royal University

Calgary | mtroyal.ca

B, C/D

MD

Olds College

Olds | oldscollege.ca

B, C/D

SM

Portage College

Lac la Biche | portagecollege.ca

C/D

SM

Red Deer College

Red Deer | rdc.ab.ca

B

MD

University of Alberta

Edmonton, Camrose | ualberta.ca

B, M, P

LG (Augusta Campus: SM)

SC

University of Calgary

Calgary | ucalgary.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG

SC

Co

University of Lethbridge

Lethbridge | uleth.ca

B, M, P

MD

Co

Saskatchewan

First Nations University of Canada

Regina, Saskatoon, Prince Albert |

fnuniv.ca

B

SM

Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Saskatoon, Moose Jaw, Regina,

Prince Albert | saskpolytech.ca

C/D

Saskatoon campus: MD; others: SM

Co

University of Regina

Regina | uregina.ca

B, M, P

MD

Co

University of Saskatchewan

Saskatoon | usask.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG

SC * Co

Manitoba

Assiniboine Community College

Brandon, Winnipeg, Dauphin, Russell |

assiniboine.net

C/D

MD

Co

Brandon University

Brandon | brandonu.ca

B, M

SM

Co

Canadian Mennonite University

Winnipeg | cmu.ca

B

SM

University of Manitoba

Winnipeg | umanitoba.ca

B, M

LG

SC * Co

University of Winnipeg

Winnipeg | uwinnipeg.ca

B, M

MD

SC * Co

Ontario

Algoma University

Sault Ste. Marie, Timmins, Brampton I

algomau.ca

B

SM

Algonquin College

Ottawa, Perth, Pembroke |

algonquincollege.com

C/D

LG

Co

Brock University

St. Catharines, Hamilton | brocku.ca

B, M, P, C/D

MD

Co

Cambrian College

Sudbury, Espanola, Little Current |

cambriancollege.ca

C/D

MD

Canadore College

North Bay, Parry Sound |

canadorecollege.ca

C/D

SM

Carleton University

Ottawa | carleton.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG

Co

Centennial College

Toronto, Suzhou, China |

centennialcollege.ca

C/D

LG

Co

Conestoga College

Cambridge, Guelph, Kitchener,

Waterloo, Brantford, Cambridge,

Inqersoll, Stratford I conestogac.on.ca

B, C/D

MD

Confederation College

Dryden, Fort Frances, Geraldton,

Kenora, Marathon, Sioux Lookout,

Red Lake, Wawa, Thunder Bay,

Kenora | confederationcollege.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Durham College

Oshawa, Whitby | durhamcollege.ca

C/D

LG

Fanshawe College

London, Simcoe, St. Thomas,

Woodstock | fanshawec.ca

C/D

LG

Co

Fleming College

Peterborough, Cobourg, Haliburton |

flemingcollege.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Georgian College

Barrie, Orillia, Owen Sound,

Midland, Bracebridge, Collingwood,

Orangeville | georgiancollege.ca

C/D

MD * Co

Humber College

Toronto, Orangeville | humber.ca

C/D

LG

Lakehead University

Thunder Bay, ON Orillia |

lakeheadu.ca

B, M, C/D

MD (Orillia campus: SM)

SC * Co

Laurentian University

Sudbury | laurentian.ca

B, M, P, C/D

MD

Loyalist College

Belleville | loyalistcollege.com

C/D

SM

McMaster University

Hamilton | mcmaster.ca

B, M, P, C/D

LG

Co

Mohawk College

Hamilton, Stoney Creek |

mohawkcollege.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Niagara College

Niagara Falls | niagaracollege.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Nipissing University

North Bay | nipissingu.ca

B, M

MD

(Muskoka campus: SM)

Northern College

Timmins, Kirkland Lake, Moosonee,

Haileybury I northernc.on.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Queen's University

Kingston | queensu.ca

B, M, P

LG

SC

Redeemer University College

Ancaster | redeemer.ca

B

SM

Co

Ryerson University

Toronto | ryerson.ca

B, M, P

LG

Co

St. Clair College

Windsor | stclaircollege.ca

C/D

MD

St. Lawrence College

Kingston, Cornwall, Brockville |

stlawrencecollege.ca

C/D

MD

Sault College

Sault Ste. Marie | saultcollege.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Sheridan College

Oakville, Brampton, Mississauga |

sheridancollege.ca

C/D

MD

Seneca College

Peterborough, Toronto, North York,

Markham, Newmarket, Vaughan |

senecacollege.ca

C/D

LG

Trent University

Peterborough | trentu.ca

B, M, P

MD

University of Guelph

Guelph | uoguelph.ca

B, M, P

LG

Co

University of Ottawa

Ottawa | uottawa.ca

B, M, P

LG

Co

University of Toronto

Toronto, Mississauga, Scarborough |

utoronto.ca

B, M, P

LG (Mississauga campus: MD;

Scarborough campus: MD)

University of Waterloo

Waterloo | uwaterloo.ca

B, M, P

LG

SC

Co

Western University

London | uwo.ca

B, M, P

LG

Co

University of Windsor

Windsor | uwindsor.ca

B, M, P

MD

Wilfrid Laurier University

Waterloo | wlu.ca

B, M, P

MD

Co

York University

Toronto | yorku.ca

B, M, P

LG

Quebec

Bishop's University

Sherbrooke | ubishops.ca

B

SM

Concordia University

Montreal | concordia.ca

B, M, P

LG

SC

McGill University

Montreal | mcgill.ca

B, M, P

LG

Universite de Montreal

Montreal | umontreal.ca

B, M, P

LG

Universite Laval

Quebec City | ulaval.ca

B, M, P

LG * SC

Universite du Quebec a Chicoutimi

Saguenay | uqac.ca

B, M, P

MD

Universite du Quebec a

Montreal

Montreal | uqam.ca

B, M, P

LG

Universite du Quebec a Trois-Rivieres

Trois-Rivieres | uqtr.ca

B

MD

Universite de Sherbrooke

Sherbrooke | usherbrooke.ca

B,M

LG (Longueuil campus: SM)

Co

Vanier College

Montreal | vaniercollege.qc.ca

C/D

MD

New Brunswick

College communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick

Bathurst, Cambellton, Dieppe,

Edmundston, Shippagan | ccnb.ca

B

MD

NB Community College

Fredericton | nbcc.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Maritime College Of Forest Technology

Fredericton | mcft.ca

C/D

SM

Mount Allison University

Sackville | mta.ca

B, M

SM

St. Thomas University

Fredericton | stu.ca

B

SM

SC

Universite de Moncton

Edmunston, Moncton, Shippagan |

umoncton.ca

B, M

MD

Co

University of New Brunswick

Fredericton, Saint John | unb.ca

B, M, P

MD

Nova Scotia

Acadia University

Wolfville | acadiau.ca

B, M

SM

Cape Breton University

Sydney | cbu.ca

B

SM

SC

Dalhousie University

Halifax | dal.ca

B, M,P

MD

Co

Mount Saint Vincent University

Halifax | msvu.ca

C/D

SM

Nova Scotia Community College

Halifax, Dartmouth, Amherst,

Springhill, Kentville, Bridgewater,

Sydney, Stellarton, Shelburne, Port

Hawkesbury, Truro, Middleton,

Lawrencetown, Yarmouth, Digby,

Wagmatcook | nscc.ca

C/D

MD

Co

Saint Mary's University

Halifax | smu.ca

B, M

MD

Co

St. Francis Xavier University

Antiqonish | stfx.ca

B, M

MD

Newfoundland &

Labrador

College of the North Atlantic

Stephenville | cna.nl.ca

C/D

MD

Memorial University

St. John's, Corner Brook,

Newfoundland; Old Harlow, England |

mun.ca

B, M, P

SM

SC

Co

Prince Edward Island

Holland College

Charlottetown | hollandcolleqe.com

C/D

SM

University of PEI

Charlottetown | upei.ca

B, M, P

SM

SC

Environmental programs change and new programs have been trending since we started creating A\J's Environmental Education Guide in 1999. Please contact education@alternativesjoumal. ca with any changes or additions from your institution. These will be immediately updated on the online version of the guide: ajmag.ca/ collegeanduniversityprograms.

B = Bachelor

M = Master

P = PhD

A = Associate Degree

C/D = Certificate/Diploma

SM = Small <5,000 students

MD = Medium 5,000-20,000

LG = Large >20,000

SC = Sustainability Co-ordinator

Co = Co-Op

RELATED ARTICLE: Buffet of Food Initiatives at UNBC.

UNIVERSITY OF NORTHERN BRITISH COLUMBIA

WHEN University of Northern BC (UNBC) students are unsatisfied, they take action. In 2014, two students decided UNBC should become a Fair Trade designated campus. Running an awareness campaign and petition persuaded UNBC administrators to obtain Fair Trade certification by January 2015. Likewise, when a group of students were unhappy with the amount of edible food wasted by the cafeteria every day, they set up a program to distribute that food to a nearby community kitchen. Student-driven waste audits regularly call attention to campus food waste and create pressure to change.

At UNBC, food is a focus for campus sustainability work, and a living laboratory for students to learn about making real change in becoming sustainable. Most of the sustainable food work on campus is driven by such student groups as Students for a Green University (SGU), Prince George Public Interest Research Group (PGPIRG) and the Northern Undergraduate Student Society.

PGPIRG took the lead in organizing a teaching and learning garden and the student-initiated and -run greenhouse. The Wildlife Club is involved with the campus apiary, and the campus weekly farmers market links local food producers to students, staff and faculty.

SGU member Carleen Paltzat writes:
   I think that it is awesome that at UNBC we are trying to create a
   closed-loop food system. We grow food in the dome greenhouse and
   then sell it to the Thirsty Moose pub which markets it as a special
   dish. We then collect the organic waste through our compost program
   on campus to be used in the dome greenhouse. The local Good Food
   Box allows the UNBC community to support a local farmer and receive
   a monthly box of affordable as-local-as-possible food. Affordable
   organic food is generally difficult to find in the North, so this
   program is a great alternative.

   The dome greenhouse project started from the SGU club and expanded
   with the help of environmental engineers on campus, faculty,
   volunteers, and community member donations. It is a wonderful thing
   to have on campus as it allows students a volunteering and learning
   opportunity.


It is the only student-built building on campus. Today most people are disconnected from where their food is coming from and how it was actually created. The dome greenhouse re-connects people to their food, especially if they help grow and harvest it.

In 2016, UNBC undertook two studies that investigated some challenges. The Real Food Challenge, undertaken as an undergraduate thesis, quantified what proportion of UNBC food is "real", in other words community-based, fair, humane, and ecologically sound. Another study, conducted by a professor and a student, examined food insecurity on campus, which challenged norms by including faculty and staff in addition to students. The results were humbling: UNBC needs to increase its commitment to real foods; and the UNBC community struggles with food insecurity across our entire campus.

UNBC aims to use their campus food system model to help set the standards for northern food sustainability.

RELATED ARTICLE: Indigenous Research and Science.

UNIVERSITY OF ALBERTA AND YUKON COLLEGE FOR STUDENTS SEEKING an education in the distinct cultures of Canada's far North, as well as a Bachelor of Science degree focused on the northern environment, there's a unique program of study available.

As part of its Environmental and Conservation Sciences program (ENCS), the Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences at University of Alberta partners with Yukon College in Whitehorse to offer a major in northern systems. "It's an absolutely fascinating point in the history of the North," says Fiona Schmiegelow, director of the Northern ENCS Program. "There is a real opportunity to experience what's happening first-hand."

The specialized study for the major occurs in the third and fourth years of the ENCS program and includes topics such as northern land-use planning and climate change. A unique aspect is how tightly connected studies are to the community.

"A major strength of the programming is that we make sure the Indigenous perspective is woven throughout the curriculum," said Schmiegelow.

The Yukon is significant in Canada because it has the largest number of land claims settled under modern treaties. Finalized in 1990, the Umbrella Final Agreement enables Yukon First Nations to become self-governing. The Yukon also has its own Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act.

Those pieces of legislation, plus recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada in 2015, add important context to every facet of the curriculum, said Schmiegelow. "For example, anything to do with wildlife must speak to the co-management of those resources by First Nations."

The curriculum combines scientific methods with traditional Indigenous knowledge offered by First Nations elders who give lectures, and provides abundant opportunities for outdoor learning. "You're in a living laboratory when you're up there and for a student interested in northern ecology or environmental biology, that's really profound," said Jim Bohun, assistant dean (academic and student programs) in the faculty.

"Students get a hands-on perspective by having senior government staff with them, to get that experiential learning that comes from working in the field," said Schmiegelow.

The program was created eight years ago to allow northern residents to earn a university-level science degree without leaving their community. Since then, it has attracted students enrolled in ENCS in Edmonton, as well as from other programs and places. Many participate in its winter field school. In August 2017 a river-based summer field school was added. As of January 2018, students can opt to do a full semester at the Yukon College campus.

"My future opportunities have greatly expanded through the BSc program being offered here," said David Silas, fourth-year student and citizen of the Selkirk First Nation in Yukon. "Plus, it is a huge advantage to be able to apply what I learn in the classroom to the immediate real world around me." Employers of recent graduates include territorial, federal and First Nations governments; environmental organizations; industry and private consultancies.

For more, see uab.ca/ales and search "northern systems".

RELATED ARTICLE: Economics for the Anthropocene Network of Researchers.

MCGILL, YORK, AND UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT

The Anthropocene is a new, present day epoch, in which scientists say we have significantly altered the Earth through human activity. These changes include global warming, habitat loss, changes in the chemical composition of the atmosphere, oceans and soil, and animal extinctions.--World Economic Forum

AS WE ENTER the Anthropocene, humanity is facing an unprecedented complexity of challenges. The Economics for the Anthropocene (E4A) graduate training and research partnership is designed to face these challenges head on. Students and faculty are learning and working together to connect the ecological and economic future of our world.

Using insights and knowledge from contemporary science, professor Peter G. Brown, leads the project to articulate, teach, and apply new understandings of human-Earth relationships. Despite what some might think, Brown isn't a super hero. He is supported by 25 academic, government, and NGO partnerships to try and understand these intensely complex problems. Partners include the David Suzuki Foundation, International Institute for Sustainable Development, Vermont Law School and Big History Institute. New relationships continue to be fostered as membership grows.

These large networks of researchers have led to really positive experiences for the students. Natalia Britto dos Santos of York University says:

"... What I like most about E4A is the diversity of backgrounds and interests in both students and professors, while sharing a common ground and the will to transform our way of living, to build better human-Earth relationships. It has been great to learn from different areas and perspectives, because at the end everything is interrelated in our planetary system. Connecting with so many progressive scholars is really inspiring to help me keep going with my own work!"

The students in the E4A program, with backgrounds ranging from biology to food systems and law to ecology, benefit greatly from their access to some of the most well respected and exciting ecological economic scholars of our time, including Herman Daly, Ursula Goodenough, Manfred Max-Neef, and Arthur Manuel. But the fun doesn't stop there!

"I have been looking for a rigorous, scientific way to analyse and suggest alternatives to the economic status quo tackling both the rising economic inequalities and the environmental crisis. Ecological economics is about taking these issues not as mutually exclusive, but rather as complementary challenges for economic analysis and policy making. In this context, being accepted into E4A, a project that is like a lighthouse in an academic world where standard economics cowers like an oyster, is probably the greatest academic opportunity I ever had".

--Charles Guay-Boutet, McGill PhD student

E4A encourages students to learn from the community. To date, eight community scholars have shared their unique perspectives and knowledge with students and researchers, tackling real-world issues through the lens of E4A. These scholars are NGO activists, community leaders and Indigenous leaders whose work includes outreach, community-based education, and policy development. The students see this unique approach as vital to a new world. John Adams from McGill says, "After two years of searching, I finally found a big-picture program that acknowledges not only that our institutions are dysfunctional, but that that is so because they're based on a dysfunctional worldview. I see E4A as a program without blinders on, that sees the forest for the trees, with the freedom to transcend disciplines and reassess the whole enterprise."

E4A also takes students out into the field. That component was particularly meaningful for McGill student, Daniel Horen Greenford, who said, "The field course was definitely the highlight of my time in the program. You can't overemphasize the importance of getting out there and talking directly to the people whose work impacts your thought, and whom you hope your work can help".

A key part of the E4A program is the internship, which requires students to apply their ecological economic knowledge to a particular area of concern for an organization of their choice.

The E4A program is separated into three streams: Law and Governance, Ethics, and Ecological Finance. Research outcomes are ongoing and include student-led seminars, discussions series, debates, workshops, collaborative academic publications and editorials for the wider public.

In 2015, the E4A Steering Committee was awarded the US Society of Ecological Economics Bernardo Aguilar Award to recognize their role in inspiring students through teaching, research, ideas, and mentoring in Ecological Economics. Most recently, Peter G. Brown received the 2017 Herman Daly Award for outstanding contributions to the field of Ecological Economics.

E4A is challenging the way that students learn, the hierarchical order of academia, and the confused human-Earth relationships that many people experience today. The E4A program changes the way that students think, for the rest of their lives. York University E4A grad Sophie Sanniti says, "The remarkable talents of my E4A partners and their inexorable demand for ecological, social and economic justice will motivate and inspire my work for my entire career."

E4A members engage with a variety of audiences. Find them on Facebook and Twitter: @E4Anetwork. The website is a rich resource of links, publications and other community activity, e4a-net.org

RELATED ARTICLE: Watershed Co-Governance.

UNIVERSITY OF VICTORIA

IN THE FALL of 2016,150 participants came together at Watersheds 2016 to build upon important skills with the goal of enhancing the capacity for successful watershed governance in British Columbia.

Watershed 2016 is one of many successes of the POLIS Water Sustainability Project (WSP) who was a core partner (along with the First Nations Fisheries Council, Canadian Freshwater Alliance, and Fraser Basin Council) on the forum. This event was part of the biannual Watersheds forums designed for watershed groups, water practitioners, researchers, First Nations, and other decision makers.

Based out of the University of Victoria's Centre for Global Studies, the POLIS WSP program has been helping local people and communities participate in the governance of their home waters since it began in 2000.

"POLIS provides a really fertile ground for students to learn both the theory and, importantly, the practice. This combination makes for a very rich environment where young researchers can learn and develop their skills." --Jesse Baltutis

The WSP team works to increase understanding of freshwater issues and to drive law, policy, and governance reform to generate change towards a sustainable freshwater future. The WSP has produced new transdisciplinary applied research, held meetings with water leaders, experts, and practitioners, and communicated leading thinking on freshwater sustainability.

A recent project of the group includes work on British Columbia's new Water Sustainability Act (passed in 2016). This act has the potential to transform freshwater management and governance in the province for the benefit of ecological function and healthy watersheds.

The 2015 WSP report, Awash with Opportunity: Ensuring the Sustainability of British Columbia's New Water Law, provides a detailed legal analysis of the Water Sustainability Act and the core regulations required to bring its sustainable aspects into full effect. This applied research outlines leading best practices from around the globe and offers clear recommendations for regulation development.

The WSP team identified the need for the provincial government to develop strong environmental flow regulations (the flowing of water needed to recharge essential natural water systems) under the Water Sustainability Act. Building on this recommendation, POLIS partnered with WWF-Canada in February 2016 to convene a Forum on Environmental Flow Needs in British Columbia. The gathering demonstrated leading thinking, pooled existing knowledge and information, and introduced new perspectives and ideas to work towards a shared understanding of needs and priorities for improved management of environmental flows in BC. This event also mobilized leaders, experts, and practitioners from many fields to continue engaging and working with government to develop this critical regulation.

Building on the success of Watersheds 2016, the Watersheds 2018 event will be held in Smithers, BC, June 4-6, and will continue to build the West Coast watershed community.

Collaborative consent is about a different way of being, together, and building a future for Canada."

Soak up more of POLIS's research on BC water governance and the importance of including Indigenous perspectives in water and land decisions in their recent report, Collaborative Consent and Water in British Columbia, at: ajlinks.ca/collaboiativeconsent.

RELATED ARTICLE: Urban Sustainability Experience.

MCGILL UNIVERSITY FROM GIS MAPPING to tracing ancient rivers, and from building a heritage garden to learning in the outdoors, Montreal's Urban Sustainability Experience (MUSE) brings history and the environment to life.

MUSE co-ordinator Julia Freeman finds the program tremendously rewarding when she sees the MUSE vision germinating and taking root. The program offers remarkably high ratios of instructors to students, which means there is time and opportunity to work together and get to know each other. Students and instructors leave the classroom and learn on the ground, in their own city. While there is much to celebrate in Montreal, the need for resilient sustainability initiatives becomes more deeply understood in the field, even as the barriers to such initiatives also become more clear. MUSE students are invigorated by the challenge:

"MUSE was one of the most exciting and immersive learning experiences that my undergraduate degree at McGill gave me. The switch from auditorium lectures during the school year, to this unique opportunity to directly engage with both a smaller group of classmates and professors, is priceless."--Laura Holden, MUSE2016

MUSE is an intensive summer field semester at McGill. Students connect with the Montreal community through sustainability research and outreach. They held a "bioblitz," identifying bird and plant species on Mont Royal, and with The Canadian Heritage of Quebec, helped to build a heritage garden for Hurtubise house in Westmount. Participants visited the world's first commercial urban rooftop greenhouse at Lufa Farms, and witnessed the arc of history bend from limestone quarry to landfill to public park at the Saint-Michel Environmental Complex.

MUSE students examine the intersections of natural history and city life while engaging both theoretical and practical knowledge. The courses are designed to respond to the growing interest in both applied research opportunities and urban sustainability challenges among students at the School of Environment; but MUSE students are selected by an application process from across the University. This diversity of perspectives enriches student discussion as they unpack the multi-faceted and complex concept of sustainability which can look quite different when conceptualized by students in Engineering, Philosophy or Environment.

RELATED ARTICLE: Eco-Mentorship and Intergenerational Learning.

FLEMING COLLEGE

THE JOY OF CHILDREN learning through nature at Fleming College is clear to all who witness it. From their bright smiles as they turn their faces toward the sun to their giggles at the sound of snow crunching beneath their little boots, the natural classroom brings out the best in all of them.

Today's child spends anywhere from two to nearly seven hours in front of a screen, and fewer than 30 minutes per day in unstructured outdoor play. But Fleming College's Early Childhood Education (ECE) program and its students are intending to change that.

The program now offers an optional Eco-Mentorship Certificate, an innovative collaboration between Fleming and Camp Kawartha.

To earn the Eco-Mentorship Certificate, Early Childhood Education (ECE) students must complete four interactive workshops: Building Children's Understanding of the World through Environmental Exploration; The Power of Play--Establishing a Personal Connection to Nature; Fostering and Nurturing Stewardship; and Experiencing Being a Part of Nature from an Indigenous Perspective.

Through the workshops, students learn to integrate outdoor and nature-based activities, connect children to the natural world, integrate Indigenous knowledge, and help foster a generation committed to environmental stewardship.

"It was fun learning what's available in our 'neighbour-wood' through this certificate," said Fleming ECE graduate Amanda Clement. "When you go out (in nature) with kids, they notice something new. It's such a heartwarming moment."

ECE professor Mary Lou Lummiss helped redesign this certificate program for Fleming during a professional sabbatical. Working with Jacob Rodenburg, Executive Director of Camp Kawartha, she attended environmental camps and training opportunities, and conducted research on mentoring children in the outdoors.

"The ECE program at Fleming shares a widely held belief that being connected to nature is something that is slowly eroding from children's lives," says Lummiss. "The ECE faculty wanted to set our program apart by offering a certificate that focuses on the role of the educator, seeing nature through an Indigenous lens, and provide strategies the educator can use with all age groups. We have been focusing on sustainability within almost all of our courses, so it was a natural fit for us."

A recent bioblitz at Fleming College's Frost Campus brought together participants of all ages with a common goal of helping to identify the number of species within campus ecosystems. The event allowed even the youngest students an opportunity to learn and take part in this important activity, helping to assess declines in biodiversity within the area.

RELATED ARTICLE: Training Teachers in Environmental Sustainability.

BROCK, UNIVERSITY OF ONTARIO INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, TRENT, AND ONTARIO INSTITUTE FOR STUDIES IN EDUCATION

"How can schools invite and accommodate children and youth to take part in the current eco-socio transformative movement not as future citizens but as full actors here and now in their community?"--Luce Sauve

IN THE SUMMER of 2016, Trent University in Peterborough, hosted the first ever National Roundtable on Environmental Sustainability Education in Pre-service Teacher Education. The event was a collaboration of the faculties of education across Ontario (Brock University, the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto, Trent University, and the University of Ontario Institute of Technology) with the shared goal of promoting and advancing environmental sustainability education (ESE) in teacher education. It was one of the first events of its kind in Canada.

The research roundtables, keynote addresses and experiential activities resulted in a National Action Plan and the Otonabee Declaration. The plan has four main action steps, all of which are now under way.

1. Establish a new national organization to support ESE in Preservice Teacher Education in Canada: A Standing Committee on ESE in Teacher Education of the Canadian Network of Environmental Education and Communication (EECOM) now exists.

2. Assess the state of ESE in Pre-service Teacher Education in Canada: A national survey on ESE in preservice teacher education in Canada is being designed, implemented, and analyzed.

3. Develop supports for ESE in Pre-service Teacher Education in Canada: There is a National hub of online support: eseinfacultiesofed.ca

4. Advocate for the crucial importance of ESE in Pre-service Teacher Education in Canada: Advocacy for the importance of ESE in pre-service teacher education is ongoing, for example, the Otonabee Declaration.

One of the first actions was the formation of a committee on ESE in teacher education with the Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication (EECOM). In combination, these actions support professional development, advocacy, and program development, all in service to a vision of teacher education in Canada that sustains the well-being of life on Earth.

Otonabee Declaration

Signed by a consortium of faculties of education from across Ontario in June 2016, the Otonabee Declaration acknowledges the degradation people have caused the planet, the role teachers have to play to rise against this degradation, and urges Canadian education leaders to make sustainability a mandatory part of teacher education. It states:
   Acknowledging the centrality of land in Indigenous worldviews and
   teachings, we respect the inherent rights and sovereignty of
   Indigenous peoples as we sign this declaration.

   Whereas human activity has caused environmental degradation,
   including climate change, species extinction, acidification of the
   oceans, and the melting of Arctic sea ice;

   Whereas educators, children, youth, and all educational
   institutions can play a pivotal role in addressing environmental
   concerns by embracing systems thinking, environmental literacy, and
   holistic practice to develop sustainability practices that enhance
   personal, community and ecological well-being;

   Whereas children, youth, and their educators should become full
   actors in their communities by working towards socio-ecological
   justice for all living beings;

   Whereas there are demonstrated benefits for people of all ages
   being in and with nature;

   And whereas UNESCO has called for a reorientation of teacher
   education to address sustainability;

   We urge leaders in Canadian faculties of education, ministries of
   education, boards of education, and bodies that regulate the
   teaching profession to make environmental and sustainability
   education a mandatory component of initial teacher education.


RELATED ARTICLE: Prairie Songbirds, Conservation and Energy.

UNIVERSITY OF MANITOBA

NICOLA KOPER and her research team study effects of energy development on Prairie conservation and the songbirds that live there. The approach is special because they bring together a wide variety of disciplines to understand the impacts. Students and collaborators on the team have backgrounds in behavioural ecology, physiology, psychology, genetics, and of course conservation biology. Each person contributes a new, original perspective and creativity to the project, bringing these diverse ideas together, which in turn leads them to more innovative perspectives on conservation.

All types of commercial-scale energy sources, including non-renewables (i.e., oil), and renewables (i.e., solar and wind), have potential impacts on our environment when power is transmitted from the source to peoples' homes. For example, transmission lines can be a problem for wildlife, because they can provide perch sites for predators and so decrease survival of prey species (like our songbirds) near the transmission lines. On the other hand, the grassy habitat below transmission lines can also be used by grassland species like monarch butterflies, so perhaps some of their consequences can be positive.

These long transmission line rights-of-way could be managed to support threatened ecosystems like tall-grass prairies. Research by Lionel Leston examined effects of both surrounding land use and mowing within transmission lines, and this can help determine how and where to manage transmission lines as prairie wildlife habitats. He worked with Manitoba Hydro to introduce an experimental change to their mowing regime to better distinguish between the effects of urbanization and local management on prairie butterflies, birds, plants, and carabid (ground) beetles.

This kind of experimental approach can be really useful when trying to understand why energy infrastructure affects wildlife: Is it because power lines cross vast tracts of native prairie that historically would have been pretty much flat and continuous? Or is it because of the need for roads to get to the wells or wind turbines? Or is it because the infrastructure is noisy, and this can disturb wildlife, or stop animals from communicating?

In Alberta, large teams of students and colleagues conducted a huge experiment to determine whether noise from oil extraction activities, or the presence of the wells themselves, affected grassland songbird abundance, productivity and behaviour. Little research exists about this on such a large scale, so Patricia Rosa worked with other colleagues and students to design and build a solar-powered speaker system to replicate the noise from oil wells without actually having wells present. Rosa explains:

"There is a gap between industry's perception of how noise can negatively impact migratory birds and what legislation considers to be a disturbance. Isolating impacts of oil development noise is a great opportunity to bridge that knowledge gap and hopefully lead to better conservation practices."

She found that reducing noise at the source would benefit several grassland species, but this wouldn't solve all our problems. Some species, like Sprague's pipits, are disturbed by the infrastructure itself, so to conserve this species at risk, we need to find a way to decrease the presence of the above-ground oil infrastructure. Burying power distribution lines, and using horizontal drilling, could help species like this.

There are also impacts of environmental disturbance on animals that are more subtle than direct mortality and habitat loss. Master's students Paulson Des Brisay and Alexandra Heathcote are testing hormones to examine whether birds living close to oil development show physiological signs of stress. Master's student Hannah Carey is studying whether infrastructure or noise influences habitat selection and survival of fledgling chestnut-collared longspurs by placing tiny radio-telemetry transmitters on nestlings just before they leave the nest. And Master's student Marie-Eve Cyr is using genetics to determine whether noise from energy infrastructure affects female songbirds' identification of suitable mates. What's next? Jessica Waldinger, a new Master's student who's just joined the team, is going to develop a project that will let us understand whether birds can effectively adapt their behaviour when humans make changes to the landscapes in which they live. We have so many questions, and so many smart students to help answer them.

Understanding these impacts will provide energy leaders with the necessary information to build a better, more ecologically sustainable future.

Caption: Pictured is Patricia Rosa.--see page 50.
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