|Environmental groups in the province say the Alberta government isnt doing enough to protect threatened caribou herds and theyre calling on the federal government to step in and force the province to take action.
Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, the Alberta Wilderness Association and other environmental groups have teamed up with the Sierra Legal Defence Fund. Theyre creating a petition that will ask the federal government to invoke its authority under the Species at Risk Act and demand action from the Alberta government to protect caribou herds. The Species at Risk Act only applies to federal land unless cabinet approves a special order.
Devon Page, staff lawyer for the Sierra Legal Defence Fund, says wide-scale industrial development in northern Alberta is fragmenting caribou habitat and threatening the survival of some herds, such as the Little Smoky and La Peche herds.
A recovery plan for woodland caribou, prepared by various stakeholder groups, has been submitted to government, but environmental groups say that so far, none of the recommendations in the plan are being implemented, and oil and gas and forestry activity is still being allowed in the threatened caribou herds core habitat.
Page says if the federal government doesnt invoke its authority under the Species at Risk Act, the Sierra Legal Defence Fund will take the issue to the courts on behalf of various Alberta environmental groups.
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Calgary Mountain View MLA David Swann is calling on the provincial government to commit to Kyoto and start reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the province.
Swann says while the provincial government has been fighting against the Kyoto Protocol, greenhouse gas emissions have gone up 20 per cent over 1990 levels in the province.
Swann says what is needed is specific reduction targets that are made clear to industry. He says the province should become a leader in creating clean energy. The provincial government has committed to reducing greenhouse gas-emission intensity (greenhouse gas emissions related to the provinces GDP), but not an overall reduction in emissions.
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The Calgary Homeless Foundation will be releasing a survey on March 1 that measured Calgarians attitudes towards homelessness. The survey was conducted by Cameron Strategy. The majority of survey respondents said addressing homelessness should be a high priority and they want to see more government funding to tackle the problem.
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Chris Geoghegan will serve 30 days in jail for shoving a banana cream pie into Premier Ralph Kleins face at a Stampede breakfast in July 2003.
Geoghegans lawyer appealed the 30-day sentence handed down by provincial court judge Terry Semenuk last year, arguing that it was too harsh. However, on February 18, Court of Queens Bench judge Peter Martin upheld the sentence, stating such a punishment would deter others from being tempted to pie another politician.
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There will be a presentation on the Maybelle River Wildland on March 9 at 7 p.m. at the Fish Creek Environmental Learning Centre. The northern wildland is the largest protected sand dune landscape in the province. It also contains forest, wetlands and lakes. For more information call Roland Kirzinger at 297-7927.