Earth Week

Since 2008, Ecology North has established a tradition of organizing a week-long celebration around International Earth Day, which is held yearly on April 22nd. Ecology North hosts a wide variety of Earth-friendly programming, workshops and events each year in Yellowknife, as well as various communities over the years including Inuvik, Enterprise, Hay River, Kakisa, Fort Simpson, and Lutsel K’e in the NWT.

As per tradition, Ecology North also coordinates the Coffee House Live & Silent Auction as our annual fundraising event.

For more details on the next Earth Week event, please check out the calendar of events page on our website.

Species at Risk Teacher Guides

Teacher guides and resources for Species at Risk in the NWT. These resources were developed with support from the NWT Species at Risk Secretariat.

More Species at Risk education resources can be found by visiting our sister site: NWT Science Focus.

Climate Action Training

Climate Action Training is a web-based education opportunity for NWT youth who are looking to gain knowledge, skills, and resources to help face the climate crisis.

Sessions were live-streamed throughout January and February, 2020 and included presentations from some of the North’s best climate leaders. This carbon free format also allows for participants to watch and re-watch the recorded live-streams. Recordings can be found below, or by clicking here.

Following the training, we will be supporting youth to take climate action in their communities.


Session 1 – Climate Change Science

This session provides a good overview of the science of climate change: why is it happening, how do we know, what are the main contributing sources, and how are climate predictions made. Thank you to presenters Jennifer Hickman, Casey Beel, and Neils Weiss for sharing their knowledge with participants.

Watch Climate Action Training Session 1 – Climate Change Science


Session 2 – Northern Impacts

Special thanks to Climate Change Adaptation Expert Brian Sieben, and Permafrost Scientist Ashley Rudy. This session was full of great visuals and lots of information about how climate change is impacting the north. Learn about coastal erosion, forest fires, flooding, emergency planning, with a special focus on permafrost.

Watch Climate Action Training Session 2 – Northern Impacts


Session 3 – Community Action

Aklavik’s Senior Administrative Officer, Fred Berens, gave an excellent presentation about what Aklavik has done to help reduce the community energy use and tackle climate change mitigation. Noeline Villebrun talked about how important it is for northern youth to take climate action. To conclude the session, Craig Scott’s presented on the huge variety of ways northern communities can, and must, adapt to the changing climate.

Watch Climate Action Training Session 3 – Community Action


Session 4 – Climate Activism – February 5th, 2020

We will have three young climate activists sharing their stories on the front-line. Join Ella Kokelj, Daniel T’Seleie and Ellen Gillies as they document their experiences making change and highlight opportunities to get involved in climate action.

Watch Climate Action Training Session 4 – Climate Activism


Session 5 – Effective Communication – February 12th, 2020 at 6pm MST

Join APTN photojournalist, Charlotte Morrit- Jacobs, and Our Time’s Thomas Gagnon Van Leeuwin who will share with you media training and knowledge about how to amplify your message. As well as how to effectively communicate climate messaging.

Watch Climate Action Training Session 5 – Effective Communication


Session 6 – Northern Leadership – Feb 19th, 2020 at 6pm MST

This session brings a hopeful message of how the north can, and must, take an active leadership role in climate action. Dr. Courtney Howard (an internationally renowned climate and health advocate) and Jordan Peterson (the Deputy Grand Chief of the Gwich’in Tribal Council and an outspoken advocate for climate solutions led by youth) lead us on a journey to discover how the NWT can, and should, take a place in the international climate sphere.

Watch Climate Action Training Session 6 – Northern Leadership

Guest Presentations

We work to bridge the gap between scientists and the public and have had a lot of fun hosting Speakers Nights with special guest scientists. Did you know that we have 8 species of bats in the NWT? Did you know that a 400 million year old fossil trackway was discovered in Hay River? Do you know how it feels to stand beside a life-size model of a whale? These events usually run once a month from October to March but come whenever we have funding or can catch hold of visiting scientists.

Keep an eye on the EN News for Speakers Nights announcements.

Backyard Composting

Previously a joint-project between the City of Yellowknife and Ecology North, the Backyard Composting Program is now housed under the City of Yellowknife’s Solid Waste Facility.

Backyard Composting is a fun way for residents to manage their organics recycling at home. Citizens directly benefit from their own efforts by producing valuable compost for their yards and gardens. The City benefits by reducing collection and management costs.

The City of Yellowknife continues to sell backyard composters at a subsidized rate of $35.

Please see the City’s website for details on how to contact the gatehouse about buying a composter:
City of Yellowknife Solid Waste Management

For tips on how to backyard compost please see the links below:
Backyard Composting North of 60
Northern Backyard Farming: Composting

Compost fun fact: George Washington, the United State’s first president, was also the nation’s first recognized composter. (Source: ASCP Journal)

Recycling

Northern Communities face unique challenges in Waste Management.  Producers of food and goods transport materials into our remote communities, but local governments are responsible for dealing with the waste that is left behind.  Transporting waste out of communities is expensive and innovative solutions are needed to help our local governments keep waste out of their landfills!

Ecology North was instrumental in helping the City of Yellowknife establish their current recycling program and continues to offer assistance and recommendations to the City on the program.  We look forward to helping the City of Yellowknife increase their overall waste diversion and to working with other communities in the NWT to find effective ways to keep waste out of their landfills!

Here is a handy resource to help you reduce waste if you live in Yellowknife!

Northern Backyard Farming Booklets

Small-scale agriculture is growing in popularity in the Northwest Territories, and residents have an increased appetite for clear and simple information on the topic. The importance of producing food locally is receiving more attention from government and residents as the costs of food transportation become a significant burden. Ecology North, with support from GNWT Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment, created a series of booklets related to Northern Backyard Farming in the NWT as a starting point for residents to try their hand at local food production.

#1 Raising Chickens 

More and more people are waking up to the joys of growing their own food. this guide is intended to illustrate the basics of raising chickens in your backyard. Chickens are fun, entertaining, great with kids and provide nutritious eggs and meat. This guide is the first in a series of booklets that Ecology North has developed about food in the NWT. Pick it up and give it a read; maybe chickens are your next step to eating more local healthy food grown right here in the NWT.

#2 Preserving Food

Preserving food is an age-old tradition. Freezing, drying, canning, jams and jellies, pickling, fermenting, and root cellaring are all great ways to store food from one season to the next. This guide is intended to provide some basic inspiration to preserve your own food. Preserving food can be fun, easy, interesting, and delicious. This guide is the second in a series of booklets that Ecology North has developed about food in the NWT. Pick it up and give it a read; maybe food preservation is your next step to eating more healthy and locally grown food in the NWT.

#3 Composting 

Composting is a great way to keep organic materials out of the landfill. It is a fun, inexpensive and easy way to turn food and yard waste into a valuable, nutrient-rich soil conditioner. This guide is the third in a series of booklets that Ecology North has developed about food in the NWT. Pick it up and give it a read; maybe making your own compost is your next step to growing local and healthy food right here in the NWT!

#4 Soil Health 

Growing food starts with healthy soil. There are a number of factors that can influence soil health including pH, moisture, structure, texture and nutrients. This guide is intended to provide basic information about building up and maintaining healthy soil. Understanding your soil’s health is an essential part of growing food. This guide is the fourth in a series of booklets that Ecology North has developed about food in the NWT. Pick it up and give it a read; maybe enhancing your soil’s health is your next step to growing your own food in the NWT.

#5 Spaces to Grow 

Out in the yard, on the deck, or in your home, there are many ways to garden and use the space you have to grow your own food. This guide provides ideas and useful information to help grow good food in our rugged landscape and northern climate. Be inspired to find small, unusual spaces to grow in your backyard or patio. Pick it up and give it a read; it could be the inspiration you need to grow your own food in the NWT!

#6 Beekeeping

This guide is intended to illustrate the basics of backyard beekeeping in the Northwest Territories. Beekeeping is fun and requires minimal space. It can also be challenging. With a bit of patience and a lot of hard work, you can reap a sweet reward.

This guide also emphasizes our responsibility to nurture our native bee species and the steps we can all take to reduce threats to their health.

Worm Composting

Would you like some information about how to set up your own indoor worm composting system? Are you looking for some red wigglers?

Thanks to our red wiggling friends, it IS possible to produce lovely compost in our northern climates, even during the winter! Worm composting, or vermicomposting, is a great year-round way to compost in your house, apartment, classroom or office. The worms will reduce your waste and produce rich compost that may be used to help gardens and houseplants grow. Plus, the kids will love them!

Ecology North offers the resources to help you start up a bin. If you would like free red wigglers, or more information, please contact us or feel free to drop by and ask us in person.