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March 2023 eNewsletter
Issue no. 176


Who We Are:
We are a diverse group of individuals with a passion for nature and the beautiful landscapes in the Crowsnest Pass and surrounding area. We share a strong conservation ethic and a desire to integrate this into the mainstream of our community. We are active in undertaking and supporting programs that preserve, protect and enhance nature and the landscapes we cherish, while ensuring a vibrant growing community. We are a registered charitable organization.

To learn more about Crowsnest Conservation and to support our work, visit our webpage here.
To sign-up for our monthly eNews, click here.

A special note from CCS:

It has been my absolute pleasure to put together these newsletters and help CCS with their social media and website. I would never have learned so much about the important issues ahead of us without this opportunity.

When I first took on this contract, the inundation of bad news about dwindling wildlife, climate change, and other issues, was a particular challenge for me. After culling through news stories, conservation newsletters, and other sources of material, I soon became heartened by the work that so many brilliant minds and dedicated workers undertake on a daily basis to turn our planet into a healthy thriving place for all creatures. There is much to be hopeful for.

Thank you for your continued dedication to this amazing local organization, and to the many wonderful people who have helped me in this endeavour.

Best wishes, Joni MacFarlane



Nothing scheduled at this time.


Events by other organizations in the region


March 2, 7pm - Women’s Hiking Webinar

Event by: The Great Divide Trail Association

Do you have questions about hiking as a woman? Here’s a webinar for women, all about preparing for your first solo backpack or first backpack, safety, gear, and hygiene. Visit GDTA website closer to the date for details.


March 7-8, 2023 - AGM and conference, Old College, Alberta

Event by: Alberta Invasive Species Council

A variety of sessions focused on invasive species as well as certified pesticide applicator credits will be offered. 


March 10-12, Calgary - Where the Wild Things Meet

Event by: Alberta Chapter of the Wildlife Society Conference

To register, visit


March 15, 7pm - The Wonderful World of Bees (VIRTUAL)

Event by: Native Alberta Bee Council

This talk will cover the main groups of bees in Alberta, what they look like, where to find them and what you can do to help! Register to receive Zoom link, visit


April 20, Invasive Species Prevention (Fort MacLeod)

Event by: Alberta Invasive Species Council

For more information, visit AISC

Crowsnest Pass News


What does the spread of ‘rogue trails’ in the southern Rockies mean for people and wildlife?

A new report shows at least 24% of trails on public land are not documented by government. Connie Simmons with the Outdoor Recreation Coalition of Alberta shares some thoughts on what this means for human safety and the impact on wildlife.

Provincial News


Funding for Alberta motorized vehicle trails worries some outdoor lovers

Province grants $8 million to two organizations (the Alberta Off-Highway Vehicle Association and the Alberta Snowmobile Association) to maintain and grow their trail networks over four years.


Changes to AB Fish & Wildlife could weaken environmental management

Critics say crucial expertise within AB Environment & Protected Areas is being broken up and dispersed, weakening fish and wildlife programs that should be working together and putting responsibility for conservation within ministries where that concern may not be central.


Report warns Alberta risks losing investment if it fails to reach emissions reduction goals

Province risks falling behind in an age of emissions reductions and net zero targets, Pembina Institute says.


In the Media



B.C. fines Tech more then $16M over Elk Valley infractions

The British Columbia government has fined Teck Coal Limited more than $16 million for exceeding pollution thresholds as well as failing to build an active water treatment facility on time at one of its operations in southeastern B.C.


Yukon assessment board says no to mining exploration project in the Peel watershed

Silver47 Exploration Corp. had pitched a 5-year drilling program at its Michelle Creek property.


Caribou or coal mine?

B.C. rejected the Sukunka mine to protect one threatened herd. Nos it considers an application from Telkwa Coal.




The right direction: new B.C. plan could actually protect old growth forests

A shift in how the province manages forests - taking into account biodiversity, climate change and Indigenous partnership - signals a long-awaited change in what the Premier calls ‘decades of short-term and transitional thinking’.


Competition Bureau to investigate industry claims of sustainable forestry management

The federal Competition Bureau has started an inquiry into whether industry claims that vast stretches of Canadian forest are sustainably managed constitute false advertising.



The sickening reality of tailings ponds

In the midst of UN climate and biodiversity conferences in late 2022, a group of scientists sent the Federal Environment Minister a letter urging him to use great caution as he considered regulations releasing oilsands toxic wastewater into the Athabasca River.


A 100% hydrogen community being built in AB

Canada’s first fully hydrogen-powered community is to be built and studied in a Strathcona County neighborhood.



Nature Conservancy of Canada purchases land for protection in southern Alberta

Officials say the land provides a corridor for wildlife such as grizzly bears and elk.


Parks Canada uses winter months to design wildfire resilient forest in Banff

Work to reduce fuel in the park means felling trees, prescribes fires.


Are we loving our parks to death?

The decision to close Moraine Lake parking lot to private vehicles is emblematic of the balancing act taking place in all of Canada’s national and provincial parks.



The link between conservation and climate change

“Grasslands are particularly valuable because they sequester carbon from the atmosphere and sink it into the soil where it’s going to be there for a long time”, says Mark Boyce, professor of ecology at the U. Of A, talking about NCC’s purchase of 255-hectares near Waterton.


Ross River Dena propose Indigenous protected area in Yukon

The Ross River Dena Council is doubling down on work to establish an Indigenous Protected and Conserved Area, according to the First Nation’s chief.




Are gas or electric appliances better for the climate? The answer is a moving target

When researchers assessed the break-even point between gas and electric appliances for 25 countries, they found only 5 where electricity is now clearly more climate-friendly. But that will change.


When they ran the math, researchers landed on some surprising bets for climate action

Opting for an early transition to a decarbonized society pays off - even if the probability of achieving climate targets like 1.5 degrees C is very low.


How will creatures that can barely move handle climate change?

Lots of species are being forced to move to escape the heat. Some just can’t move very far.



Got dog poop? Let this vermicomposting success story inspire you

Overwhelmed by dog waste, this business owner turned to vermicuture.


Wood, now turbocharged with carbo-capture powers

Researchers created a novel wood composite that contains C02-absorbing materials, paving the way for carbon-negative furniture and structures.



Scientists dissect 3,500-year-old bear discovered in Siberian permafrost

A brown bear that lay almost perfectly preserved in the frozen wilds of eastern Siberia for 3,500 years has undergone a necropsy by a team of scientists after it was discovered by reindeer herders on a desolate island in the Arctic.


Bears may self-medicate against ticks by rubbing against trees

Brown bears often scratch their backs on trees, leaving behind chemical signals to other bears. Now it seems the act also helps protect them from ticks.


U.S. moves to end grizzly bear protections in Yellowstone, northern Rockies

State officials have insisted any future hunts would be limited and not endanger the overall population.



Hiking humans impact large mammal habits

New study shows how animals changed their behavior around hiking trails on the east side of Glacier National Park during and after Covid-closures.


Tracing fishing gear to protect North Atlantic right whales is positive step

Much can be learned about the evolving habits of endangered North Atlantic right whales by tracing pieces of fishing gear from which the animals are freed, researchers say.


What’s happening to honey bees?

What’s behind the widespread loss of honey bee colonies? A new study has some answers.


Where have all our insects gone?

There is a crisis in the countryside - and a massive decline in insect numbers could have significant consequences for the environment.



Keepers of the Water concerned tailing pond leak will end up in Athabasca River

The executive director of the Keepers of the Water in northern AB says there are concerns that leaks from a tailings pond attached to an Imperial Oil project will leak into the Athabasca River.


Southern AB ranchers conserve land to protect drinking water for cities

Three new projects by the Southern Alberta Land Trust Society, a rancher-led conservation organization, will protect about 27-square kilometres of land in Rocky View County.


Dereliction of doodie: Ontario’s plans for sewage could hurt Great Lakes - and U.S. relations

To provinces and eight states agreed to limit water transfers around the Great Lakes basin. But Ontario’s plans for development include moving a lot more wastewater south.,+2023+—+Newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f6a05fddb8-742e84184f-108504207

Thank you to Raymond Toal and Joni MacFarlane for the use of their images.

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