“Each time I return to the wilderness I feel like a child again,” former Alberta Premier and federal Environment Minister Jim Prentice once told delegates at the 2009 World Wilderness Congress in Medira, Mexico.
Prentice was remembered on Friday as a true lover of nature and someone who strived tirelessly throughout his life to preserve and protect the wild areas of both his home province and those of the rest of Canada as well.
Prentice’s widow Karen and other relatives were on hand at the Crowsnest Museum to lend their full support to the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s newly dubbed Jim Prentice Wildlife Corridor initiative in the Crowsnest Pass, the collection of small communities where Prentice as a teenager spent his formative years and first learned the value of hard work in the local coal mine.
Prentice and three other men were killed in a plane crash in October 2016, but his family was gratified his legacy and name would live on through the NCC’s wildlife corridor. “Jim loved nature, and he believed strongly in conservation,” said Mrs. Prentice in her remarks to those assembled at the museum to honour her late husband. “I immediately knew this is something Jim would want to see happen.”
The corridor is not a done deal yet, said the Nature Conservancy’s Alberta regional vice-president Bob Demulder, but with the Prentice family backing the project and the Province of Alberta donating $1 million in Prentice’s memory toward the $5 million needed to purchase the last piece of land to complete the corridor, Demulder felt it soon could be.
Needle found near school prompts letter to parents
Another needle has been found near a Lethbridge school, renewing concerns about the city’s supervised consumption site and the safety of residents, especially children.
Two students of Westminster Elementary school on the northside recently found a needle in a large field south of the school. And while the students responded correctly and immediately reported what they found to the office, a concerned parent from another school says that doesn’t address the bigger issue about the city’s supervised consumption site or the safety of residents.
And with all the drug paraphernalia found in recent months, some near schools, she wonders what will happen during the winter months when needles are tossed in the snow and children can no longer see them.
The parent, who would only identify herself as a member of the Lethbridge Needle Crisis Support Group, says needles have been found near other schools and the problem of discarded needles is only getting worse.
The City of Lethbridge is referring concerned residents and even the media to its website and its safe needle disposal guide, but that’s not a good enough response to the drug crisis, says the concerned parent. The problem, she suggests, is ARCHES and the supervised consumption site the organization runs are not fixing the drug problem in the city and only making it worse.
The Westminster Elementary school sent an email to parents Thursday informing them of the latest incident and ensuring them the school is doing all it can to keep children safe.
Lethbridge School District 51 confirmed a needle was found in the middle of the field next to the school, and that a teacher called the fire department to pick it up. And while drug debris has been found near Westminster school before, this is the first time it’s been found there this year.
Three Lethbridge stores get cannabis licences
Three Lethbridge locations have been granted licences to sell recreational marijuana.
As of Friday, they’re among 43 across Alberta to have successfully completed the complex application process.
The Calgary-based NewLeaf Cannabis group now has permission to open outlets at 1328 Mayor Magrath Drive S. as well as at 338 University Drive W. They’re among seven Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis licences issued so far to NewLeaf, with most of those locations in Calgary.
Downtown, a SpiritLeaf store has been approved for 329 5 St. S. The company also has a licence for a shop in St. Albert.
With short-supply situations reported across Canada — little more than week after recreational use became legal — it’s not known when newly licensed stores will have sufficient stock to open. The three Lethbridge locations, along with three previously approved for Medicine Hat, are so far the only outlets in southern Alberta.