If you’re reading this on the web or someone forwarded this e-mail newsletter to you, you can sign up for Globe Climate and all Globe newsletters here.
Good afternoon, and welcome to Globe Climate, a newsletter about climate change, environment and resources in Canada.
I never thought I would start this newsletter off with a story about taxidermy, but this one is worth a read.
Yellowknife’s Nature’s North Wildlife Gallery is making a taxidermy monument that showcases the country’s Arctic animals. And in Canada’s North, where wildlife is particularly vulnerable owing to a rapidly changing climate, taxidermal animals could become important documentations of species that are critically endangered, or worse.
“I think, if you know what kinds of animals live in a place, you may want to help protect that ecosystem,” says novice taxidermist Jessie Olson. “I think this inspires people, hopefully, and maybe it will promote a sense of conservation.”
Now, let’s catch you up on other news.
Noteworthy reporting this week:
- Critical minerals: Ottawa outlines eligibility for companies seeking $1.5-billion in critical minerals infrastructure funding
- Conservation: Ottawa, B.C. and First Nations Leadership Council agree to invest up to $1-billion on conservation
- Carbon tax explainer: What to know about Justin Trudeau’s carbon pricing system and the latest exemptions, and why they are not without opposition ... lots of it, which Ottawa is pushing back on. You can also listen to this episode of The Decibel about what political machinations are at play behind the scenes.
- Analysis: Is the carbon tax worth fighting for? Climate columnist Adam Radwanski explores
- Tourism: New Zealand looks to the future of climate-friendly travel
- Pipelines: Coastal GasLink completes B.C. pipeline installation after five years
- Environment: This Newfoundland town’s old fish-sauce plant is a stinking, hazardous mess. But whose?
- Analysis from The Narwhal: Did the kidnapping of a Canadian solar power inventor lead to the domination of fossil fuels?
A deeper dive
Ice core science might answer climate questions in Western Canada
Ryan MacDonald is senior editor for climate, environment and resources. For this week’s deeper dive, he talks about a new body of work from The Globe about glacier research.
Globe reporter Justine Hunter has been talking to Brian Menounos, the Canada Research Chair in Glacier Change, for a long time about getting out into the field to follow researchers on their glacier investigations. This summer, it finally happened.
On a spectacular, blue-sky day, a team of Canadian and U.S. researchers took a helicopter ride to a remote and rugged spot in the B.C. Coast Mountains, landing at a site of about 3,000 metres elevation on Mount Waddington. There, they drilled deep ice cores for an archive of climate vulnerabilities over the past 1,000 years.
What makes this work special is that these kinds of ice cores are generally taken at the poles, but new technology is allowing for deeper samples. It’s also unique because it was done during the midst of Canada’s worst wildfire season on record – and the team is hoping to show not only climate changes, but also wildfire patterns.
This work is so important that we’ve decided to serialize Justine’s story, and the amazing visuals and video that go with it, so that you can go along for the ride.
Chapter 1 launched this weekend. It’s about the expedition and it sets the scene of Mt. Waddington with a stark warning that the mountain has a history of defeating people – a reality that hangs over the whole operation. Chapter 2 looks at the urgency of gathering this data before its gone; Menonous is getting ready to publish data on how this was the worst year for glacier loss. And Chapter 3 will be set in a lab in Edmonton, to learn the lines of history laid in ash and soot.
It’s back in the lab where, hopefully, the mountain will reveal its secrets. We hope you enjoy it.
What else you missed
- N.L. wants details on environmental impact before hydrogen project can move forward
- Stage set for conflict at COP28 with mixed response to outcome of key climate talks. King Charles to deliver opening address at the climate summit in Dubai; the Pope says he will also attend, a first by a pontiff
- Ship traffic ramps up through the Northwest Passage as Arctic ice retreats
- Storm Ciaran brings record rainfall to Italy with at least six killed; European death toll rises to 14
- Climate scientist Saleemul Huq, who emphasized helping poor nations adapt to warming, dies at 71
- Enbridge to purchase seven renewable gas facilities in Texas, Arkansas for US$1.2-billion
- Group estimates 403,000 jobs will be created by major U.S. energy projects announced in mid-2022
Opinion and analysis
The editorial board: Ottawa can win a speedy verdict on clean power
Shannon Proudfoot: How much is the carbon tax climbdown worth to Justin Trudeau’s government?
The editorial board: A carbon tax isn’t the only way to combat climate change
Rachel Doran and Trevor Melanson: The Liberals had a good story to tell. The carbon price carve-out ruined it
Konrad Yakabuski: Union wage gains could threaten transition to electric vehicles
Grant Bishop: Ottawa’s exemption of heating oil from carbon tax is surprising and shameless
Canadian Natural Resources president says Ottawa should ensure consistent regulatory environment across economic sectors
“For businesses to operate effectively and efficiently, you need good regulatory policies that are stable and very conducive for all businesses to work within that framework,” said the president of Canada’s largest oil and gas producer.
Tim McKay, who has spent 33 years at the Calgary-based company and is set to retire next year, said in an interview that one of the biggest challenges has been the speed of shifting government fiscal and environmental targets and policies.
Scott Stauth, currently the company’s chief operating officer of its oil sands operations, will take over the position.
- Opinion: For the sake of Canada’s cleantech future, SDTC board and management must step down
- Hydro-Québec plans to spend at least $90-billion on new power generation over next decade
- On commodities: Will natural gas prices keep rising?
Each week The Globe will profile a Canadian making a difference. This week we’re highlighting the work of Robert, and his climate activism.
Robert is an 11-year-old who talks to other kids around the world about climate change. He also engages with scientists, charities, companies and activists to learn about and share what kids can do to help their planet.
Do you know an engaged individual? Someone who represents the real engines pursuing change in the country? Email us at GlobeClimate@globeandmail.com to tell us about them.
Photo of the week
Guides and Explainers
- Want to learn to invest sustainably? We have a class for that: Green Investing 101 newsletter course for the climate-conscious investor. Not sure you need help? Take our quiz to challenge your knowledge.
- We’ve rounded up our reporters’ content to help you learn about what a carbon tax is and just generally how Canada will change because of climate change.
- We have ways to make your travelling more sustainable and if you like to read, here are books to help the environmentalist in you grow, as well as a downloadable e-book of Micro Skills - Little Steps to Big Change.
Catch up on Globe Climate
- In B.C.’s rainforest, we search for white Spirit bears
- The $15-billion green financing agency helping Ottawa’s clean-economy ambitions
- We are digging deep on critical minerals
- Prudence and ambition in financing climate change solutions