County partnership recognized by Alberta Emerald Foundation
The Calgary and Area Governmental Weed Committee (CAGWC), which includes Rocky View County, was honoured as one of three finalists in the Alberta Emerald Foundation’s 21st annual Emerald Awards, June 6.
The project aims to manage and limit the environmental, social and economic impacts of invasive non-native plant species on biodiversity and habitat loss.
The CAGWC was up for the Emerald Awards’ Environmental Excellence by a Government Institution award, against the City of Calgary’s Calgary Public Building and the City of Edmonton’s urban biodiversity project, which won the award.
“We are honoured to receive a nomination for such a prestigious award as this,” said Tim Dietzler, Rocky View’s agricultural fieldman.
“Excellence in land stewardship is vital to the health of our communities, and it is very rewarding to be recognized in this area.”
The project’s management of the impacts of invasive plant species includes mitigation of retail invasive plant sales, community awareness, stakeholder collaboration, training, prevention, weed management, weed mapping and applied research.
CAGWC members include the City of Calgary, City of Airdrie, Rocky View County, Town of Cochrane, MD of Foothills, MD of Bighorn, Town of Canmore, Town of Okotoks, Wheatland County, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, Alberta Sustainable Resource Development and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
“We are very proud of our agricultural services department for successfully collaborating with other municipalities on this project,” said County Reeve Rolly Ashdown.
“Their teamwork has enabled invasive plant species in the county and bordering communities to be managed quickly and effectively. This has saved money in control costs and protected natural habitats from being displaced by harmful plant species.”
The Emerald Awards were created in 1991 to encourage environmental awareness across the province and recognize excellence in environmental initiatives by individuals, organizations, schools and businesses.
Alberta Emerald Foundation Chair Guy West commended all of the 2012 award recipients and finalists for their ingenuity in working to solve the crucial challenges of environmental sustainability.
“The level of innovation demonstrated by this year’s recipients is astounding,” said West.
“We look for people and groups who are pushing the limits in environmental sustainability, with the hope that because of their innovations, many people will be able to help lower our society’s environmental impact. This year, I think the recipients embody that thinking.”
For more information, visit www.emeraldfoundation.ca