Keeping cool and active with Ottawa’s heat warnings

Ottawa faced extreme heat warnings last week, proving climate change is here and its effects are impacting us. This coincided with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issuing their dire report on how the climate will fare under the current predictions.

Under the report, Canada is expected to experience a continuation of rising temperatures, while CBC reported that heatwaves are expected to become more frequent and more severe as temperature continue to climb year-round.

3 Ways to help reduce your impact on the climate

  • Keep in mind your carbon footprint—this is the representation of the amount of greenhouse gases that your actions generate (calculate yours here).
  • Shop local and reduce the kilometres your food has to travel.
  • Use active transportation (walk, bike, bus, etc.).

Tips for heatwaves

We also touched base with Ottawa Public Health regarding the heat warnings. They explained that “heat warnings issued by Environment and Climate Change Canada mean extra precautions need to be taken by everyone… it [is] important to think ahead and plan for ways to stay cool while respecting Public Health COVID-19 prevention measures.”

  • Engage in outdoor activities during the coolest parts of the day (typically in the early morning and evening).
  • When going out in the sun, wear sunscreen and remember to reapply.
  • Consume plenty of fluids (water is best) throughout the day, even if you don’t feel thirsty!
  • Wear light-coloured and loose clothing.

For more tips and tricks, check out Ottawa Public Health’s page on Beating the Heat!

Watch out for ticks!

Due to climate change, ticks are making a rise in Southwestern Ontario. Warming temperatures are shortening the cold season, increasing the number of warm days and resulting in a climate more accommodating for species like ticks.

Ticks to know

There are a few different types of ticks, but the two of importance in Ontario are dog ticks and deer/blacklegged ticks.

Deer/Blacklegged Ticks

  • Are carriers of Lyme disease
  • Live in forested areas
  • Found in early spring/late fall

Dog Ticks

  • Do not carry Lyme disease
  • Live in tree cover/long grass
  • Found in spring/summer

Avoiding ticks

  • Make sure to check yourself, your children, and you pets after having been outside.
  • Wear pants and long sleeves to reduce skin exposure.
  • When hiking, stay on the path instead of bushwhacking.
  • Maintain your property:
    • If you have a lawn, keep the grass cut short.
    • Consider creating a woodchip/gravel border between your lawn and a naturalized/wooded area.

Think twice before using pesticides. Ontario prohibits their use for most cosmetic purposes, and pesticides increase health risks for both humans and native species.

If you find a tick

Remove the tick using a tick key or a pair of tweezers—grabbing it as close to the skin as possible and carefully pulling it straight out. Do not use other “techniques” such as using petroleum jelly or a lit match, and avoid crushing the tick as it can cause Lyme disease bacteria to pass into the bloodstream.

  • Access eTick for quick image identification.
  • To help officials monitor where ticks live, you can submit ones you’ve found for testing at your public health unit.

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Check out our sources for more information!

Run, hide, pretend it’s not happening?

Think about it.

If I walk down the street naked, harming nobody, I’ll be arrested.

But if I drive a belching muscle car down the same street, or idle it for hours, I’ll be fine.

Nudity is a crime — but escalating the Climate Crisis and endangering millions of lives, is still  considered a normal, acceptable thing to do.

Air travel causing climate change

At this moment, a friend is flying to BC — where Climate Fires of historic proportions have created so much smoke it’s dangerous to exercise. She’s going hiking.

Not to judge, but spot the irony here? Flying is the single worst thing you can do, to inflate the fires and drive us towards climate disaster.

Are we totally out of touch with reality?

In the age of climate breakdown, we still feel it’s “okay” to fly, to drive for fun, to use as much energy as you like.

It’s “okay”, it’s “normal”, “everybody else does it”.

We’re facing fires, floods, drought, famine — yet we’re more concerned with vacations, shiny cars, home renos. We save for retirement, while at the same time destroying our chances of having anything left to retire to.

While we dilly-dally, the planet burns. We edge dangerously closer to a runaway climate scenario / tipping point — mass famine, even the end of civilization.

Photo of car with road kill

Are our lives, our morals dangerously out of date?

Should recreational, gratuitous use of fossil fuels be shameful, the new nudity?

Or, impose enormous carbon taxes to fund climate action, mitigation?

When will we take our feet off the gas?


What do you think? How does this make you feel?

(a) Not my fault / not my problem
(b) It’s overblown / “climate is always changing”
(c) We’re screwed, nothing you can do about it
(d) China’s fault / the US / rich people / anybody other than me
(e) I’m going to DO something, as long as I am able



 

Waking up to Climate Crisis, Climate Action

It’s finally happening, the world is waking up to the climate crisis. Oil companies are in court for lying, the truth is coming out about climate breakdown, and millions are standing up for truth and action. All this is thanks to you — everyday people who care about our future — and are doing everything we can. It is only with our eyes wide open, that we have the opportunity to rebuild our world.

tell-the-truth-2In the news:

markus-spiske-tyfI3RGqL7Y-unsplashWhat you can do:

  • Support groups and organizations working for climate action: Climate Action Network Canada | GoodWork. Join two or three that seem most important to you. Without you and me, they are nothing — our participation is crucial.
  • Live as sustainably as you can. Reduce your consumption, fly less or not at all, switch to renewables. It might sound difficult, but it will lead to a happier, healthier life. Top Ten Things You Can Do About Climate Change
  • Participate in nonviolent Climate Strikes. Strikes continue every Friday in thousands of locations worldwide. The next Global Strike is planned for Friday November 29. Join a strike or start your own: Fridaysforfuture.ca | FridaysforFuture.orgGoodWork.ca/Strike

Do meaningful work:

Because, without a stable climate and a healthy ecosystem, there is no economy, no future.

Environmental News

Global Climate Strike – Fri Sep 27 – Ottawa & Worldwide

On March 15th, more than 150,000 students were officially on strike across Québec, and young people across Canada marched in the streets, demanding action today to ensure we have future generations.

Young people have been going on strike every Friday the several months, young people have been waging creative protest to push politicians to take bold action and tackle the climate crisis head on.

On September 27, the planet is on strike. Not just students, but also workers, citizens. Because the climate crisis spares nobody, we must all be mobilized. Let’s make this date a historic moment. The one of true change.

Because it is high time we take matters into our own hands.

Join us at the Global Climate Strike to demand accountability and action regarding the climate crisis!

Let us know you’re coming! RSVP now at this link:  https://www.ecologyottawa.org/ottawa_climate_strike

We need organizers! Will you step up to invite your friends to join you on the big day? Contact Clara to see how you can help out.

CONTACT: Clara Cuny · clara.cuny@ecologyottawa.ca · 613-860-5353

For more information about the march, please see the event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/2358161320964436/

We will be meeting at Confederation Park at 11:30am.

Hope to see you there!

WHEN: September 27, 2019 at 11:30am – 2pm
WHERE: Confederation Park (Laurier Ave. and Elgin St.)


Strikes across Canada, worldwide, organizations & resources: https://GoodWork.ca/strike

School Strike for Climate Action: May 3

School Strikes for Climate
Friday May 3, across Canada

OTTAWA:

More locations: Fridaysforfuture.ca | Fridaysforfuture.org

#FridaysForFuture | #ClimateStrike

“Adults are jeopardizing our future. You say you love your children above all else, and yet you are stealing their future in front of their very eyes. Something big needs to happen. People need to realize our political leaders have failed us. And we need to take action into our own hands.” — Greta Thunberg

“Our house is on fire. I am here to say, our house is on fire. I want you to act as you would in a crisis. I want you to act as if our house is on fire. Because it is.” Greta Thunberg

“What’s the point of going to school if I won’t have a future?” – Sophia

Greta Thunberg — Twitter | Instagram | Facebook

GoodWork.ca/Fridays (resources, volunteering, organizations, more)

Volunteer in Ottawa

Passionate about the environment? Want to help make Ottawa the green capital of Canada? Work with Ottawa’s leading grassroots environmental organization? Ecology Ottawa is seeking Volunteer Organizers for May to August, includes training, more… GoodWork.ca/979615

Climate Emergency Rally in Ottawa

Ottawa, this is a climate emergency

The United Nations has made it clear – we now have 11 years to avoid catastrophic impacts to the world’s species and ecosystems. The effects are already being felt in Ottawa: record floods in 2017; tornado impacts in late 2018; summers of extreme and deadly heat; and winters with erratic freeze-thaw cycles. Momentum is building among cities like Vancouver, Halifax, Kingston and Hamilton to urgently respond to this moment of crisis and build a better city, and Ottawa has the opportunity to lead. We are calling on the City of Ottawa to declare climate emergency now.

Continue reading “Climate Emergency Rally in Ottawa”

Climate change event in Ottawa

Canadians have been coming to a greater understanding of the threat posed by global warming and the need for urgent action by governments, industry and the public at large. The Trudeau government has, more or less, taken up the cause. Provinces are recognizing the need for action, even as they fight over what that should be. Some multinational corporations are suddenly promoting themselves as environmental stewards. Concerned citizens are looking for ways to effectively reduce their carbon footprint. Yet progress has been slow and limited. Continue reading “Climate change event in Ottawa”

Event: Climate Change Policy – Friday Sept 16, 2016

The gravity of the climate change threat demands bold measures.  “The Leap Manifesto” is a sweeping and ambitious plan, but it also entangles climate policy with a host of other matters that are part of a larger ideological agenda. So it’s a profoundly divisive document at the very moment that we need to find common ground on climate change. Is there an alternative climate policy that would both unite us and make a real difference?”

Thomas Homer-Dixon, the Centre for International Governance Innovation Chair of Global Systems, Balsillie School, University of Waterloo will present the 2016 FPA Currents Lecture “Leap to Where? Elements of a Canadian climate policy that could be both feasible and enough.” as part of Carleton University’s Throwback celebrations. Mr. Homer-Dixon is a Carleton alumnus with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science…  (more)