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Bow Riverkeeper News -- March 30, 2005

Bow Riverkeeper

Contents

  1. Glenbow Art Exhibit - Our River: Journey of the Bow
  2. Event: Icebreaker Gala - Hosted by the Bow River Basin Council
  3. News: David Boyd begins work in Privy Council Office
  4. News: Happy (Belated) World Day for Water!
  5. News: Series of Articles Features Important Water Issues Facing Province
  6. News: Calgary Weir Project Funding Announced
  7. Upcoming Events
  8. Bow Riverkeeper in the News
  9. Donate to Bow Riverkeeper and Receive Magazine Subscription

1. Glenbow Art Exhibit - Our River: Journey of the Bow

In Our River: Journey of the Bow the Glenbow museum offers us the opportunity to travel the length of the Bow, from its origin at Bow Glacier to its confluence with the Oldman downstream from Calgary.

The show features the river through artifacts, art works, historic and contemporary photographs, and archival documents. According to the Glenbow, "You will see the mountain river, the urban river, and the prairie river. Some of it may surprise you - few people realize that men wearing deep sea diving suits helped to create Bassano Dam, or that Eau Claire, today a spiritual/emotional centre of the city in many ways, began life as a lumber mill on a flat plain with no tress in sight and no island."

The exhibit also reflects on how the relationship between artists and the Bow has changed over time. In Favoured Places, they look at five sections of the river which have been particular favourites amongst many artists over a long period of time. In Rhythm and Change: The Bow in Contemporary Art you can see how contemporary artists are reacting to, and representing the river.

Exhibit Dates: February 19 - June 5. For more information: www.glenbow.org

2. Event: Icebreaker Gala - Hosted by the Bow River Basin Council

The Bow River Basin Council (BRBC) is hosting its first-ever fundraising gala at the Westin Calgary from 6 p.m. to 12 midnight on Friday April 29, 2005. We invite you to participate in this Icebreaker Gala, as we get to know each other and learn about the Bow River Basin.

The BRBC is a membership-based non-profit organization, dedicated to making the Bow River the best-managed watershed in the world. Bow Riverkeeper is a member of the BRBC. At the Icebreaker Gala, the BRBC will release its State of the Basin Report and distribute it to schools, libraries, and all members of the BRBC and interested members of the public. Selected photographs from the book will be available for auction.

At the Icebreaker Gala, BRBC we will recognise the contributions of special guests Premier Ralph Klein, Dr. Lorne Taylor and Jack Donahue, for forming watershed management groups and the Water For Life Strategy. You can look forward to an entertaining program with Master of Ceremonies Bob Nicholson (former CBC anchor), guest speaker Arlene Kwasniak (prominent environmental lawyer and author) a four course gourmet meal, silent and live auctions (with some very unique offers of adventures, activities, art and more) dance to the sounds of Metrobeat.

Tickets for the Icebreaker Gala are $125 each. Tables of eight cost $1,000. An invitation and order form to become a sponsor, to order tickets, or to donate items or activities to our live and silent auctions are available on the BRBC web site www.brbc.ab.ca

3. News: David Boyd begins work in Privy Council Office

David Boyd, the author of a sweeping report that calls for the creation of ``the next generation of environmental laws and policies'' has been hired as a policy analyst at the heart of the federal government after Prime Minister Paul Martin read the report, then ordered bureaucrats to put in place its recommendations.

In January 2005, Bow Riverkeeper featured David Boyd alongside Robert F. Kennedy Jr. in an event in Calgary. David Boyd, a Victoria environmental lawyer and author of Sustainability within a Generation began work in the prime minister's department of the Privy Council Office March 1. Boyd's report calls for Ottawa to establish and maintain a moratorium on new offshore oil and gas exploration, put an end to billions of dollars in subsidies to the forest, mining, fishing, fossil fuel, agricultural and nuclear industries, and end nuclear power generation and large-scale hydroelectric projects completely.

As one of about 15 policy analysts in the Privy Council Office's economic and regional policy branch, Boyd will ``provide his input and expertise on a broad range of environmental policy issues,'' said Privy spokeswoman Hali Gernon.

4. News: Happy (Belated) World Day for Water!

March 22 marked World Water Day to focus attention on the central and global importance of water. The theme of WWD 2005 and the Decade emphasizes the central role that water plays in sustaining human life. Water is critical for human well-being, environmental health, biodiversity, energy generation, industrial development, food production, and it plays an essential role in many cultures and religions.

In 1992, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/47/193 by which 22 March of each year was declared World Day for Water, to be observed starting in 1993, in conformity with the recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) contained in Chapter 18 (Fresh Water Resources) of Agenda 21. States were invited to devote the Day, as appropriate in the national context, to concrete activities such as the promotion of public awareness through the publication and diffusion of documentaries and the organization of conferences, round tables, seminars and expositions related to the conservation and development of water resources and the implementation of the recommendations of Agenda 21.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), in 2002 some 1.1 billion people lacked access to improved water sources, 2.6 to basic sanitation, and approximately 1.8 million people die every year from diarrhoeal disease, 90 percent of them children under the age of five.

For more information:
http://www.unesco.org/water/water_celebrations/
http://www.un.org/documents/ga/res/47/a47r193.htm

5. News: Series of Articles Features Important Water Issues Facing Province

A series of excellent articles in the most recent Alberta Wilderness Association's Wild Lands Advocate discusses some important water issues facing southern Alberta.

The first article, The Little Bow Gets Bigger - Alberta's Newest River Dam discusses Alberta's newest dam project on the Little Bow/Highwood rivers. The Little Bow Project is an expansion of an existing water management system for irrigation north of Lethbridge involving the tripling of the capacity of the Little Bow Canal that currently takes river flows from the Highwood River and diverts it into the Little Bow River. The diversion is made because the Little Bow is only feed by rapid snow-melt, heavy rains, or flood overflows from the Highwood River and therefore does not have the necessary flows in the summer. Increasing irrigation expansion along the Little Bow River has placed new pressure on the Highwood's flow particularly during the summer impacts among other things the trout cold water fishery months.

The second article, Reckoning Hidden Costs of River Diversions reviews a study conducted by the University of Arizona finding that society is losing $2.4 billion year annually as a result of dams and water diversions on the Colorado River. The Colorado River no longer reaches the sea and has resulted in impacts to natural flood control, wastewater treatment, nursery areas for fish and other marine organizes. According to the Alberta Wilderness Association, the lessons of the Colorado should be considered at the same time plans are made of a diversion from the Red Deer. Today, "a grand scheme to divert water" is being considered by the Special Areas Board to divert water from the Red Deer River through an 88-km canal or pipeline to the headwaters of Sounding and Berry Creeks.

The final article, Mile River Dam Report Locked in Cabinet, provides and update on the Milk River Feasibility Study regarding the sharing of water of the St. Mary and Milk Rivers. In April 2004 Montana Governor Judy Martz asked the International Joint Committee to reopen a 1921 agreement between the US and Canada regarding water sharing on the Mile and St. Mary Rivers. At the same time, Alberta has proposed a dam to capture more of its share of the Mile River during the spring runoff. The Southern Alberta Environmental Group and the AWA are asking that the IJC considering instream flows as they make their final decision regarding the use of these two rivers. diversions

To read the full articles, go to:
http://www.albertawilderness.ca/AWRC/WLA.htm

6. News: Calgary Weir Project Funding Announced

On Tuesday, March 22 at Pearce Estate Park, the Calgary Weir Improvement Project Steering Committee announced the funding of $6.4 million in funding support creating a new river park on the Bow River. The Calgary Weir Improvement Project involved the modification of the Calgary Weir to increase the safety on the river while improving fish passage and wildlife corridors.

The money presented at the ceremony will allow for the modification of the Calgary Weir. The modification of the area about the weir, to be called Harvie Passage, will feature two channels - one for typical boaters and floaters, the other featuring a wider variety of whitewater features appropriate to more skilled paddlers. Additionally, parking and pathways will be incorporated into the plan to limit the impact on the surrounding natural areas.

For more information about the Calgary Weir Improvement Project - Let the Bow Flow: www.parksfdn.com/abcalasnpfc/doc.nsf/doc/projects_weir.cm

7. Upcoming Events

"Our Water for Life: Protecting Water and Wetlands in Bragg Creek," April 7, 7:00-9:30 pm. Bragg Creek Community Centre. For more information: 403-685-5580.

"Fate of Calgary's Wastewater Effluent in the Bow River," April 6, 3:30-5:15 pm. Escalus room, MacEwan Student Centre, University of Calgary (north side, ground level). RSVP to Michelle Doucette 220-3127, doucette [at] ucalgary [dot] ca

IceBreaker Gala Hosted by the Bow River Basin Council, Friday April 29. For more information: www.brbc.ab.ca.

Pathway and River Clean-up, Sunday May 15th, 2005

"Walk in the Watershed" hosted by Ghost Watershed Alliance. May 8. For more info contact Marina at redcougar [at] telusplanet [dot] net or Hugh at 932 3700

8. Bow Riverkeeper in the News

On Monday, March 21, Bow Riverkeeper Program Coordinator Alex Mowat spoke at the World Water Day forum sponsored by the Council of Canadians. See the article by the Red Deer Advocate on the Bow Riverkeeper website. http://www.reddeeradvocate.com/portals-code/searchd.cgi

On March 7, Bow Riverkeeper, Danielle Droitsch was quoted in the Globe and Mail and the Edmonton Sun responding to calls for more dams to be constructed in Alberta emphasizing the need for rely on water conservation and efficiency.

9. Donate to Bow Riverkeeper and Receive Magazine Subscription

Support the work of Bow Riverkeeper! Consider making a donation to Bow Riverkeeper in the amount of $30 or more and receive a free annual subscription to WATERKEEPER Magazine. You will also receive a quarterly update from Bow Riverkeeper and our work in the Bow River basin.

To make a donation go to, http://www.bowriverkeeper.org/join/join.shtml


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Posted March 31, 2005 by russ

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