Tuesday, March 31, 2020

When the Going Gets Tough, the TUFF Gets Growing. Rebranding the TUC to the TUFF Corridor

When the Going Gets Tough, the TUFF Gets Growing. Rebranding the TUC to the TUFF Corridor
Event page: Rebrand the TUC to TUFF Corridor

Event Action: Write an email to Minister of Infrastructure Alberta

Presently referred to as the Transportation & Utility Corridor (TUC), we are seeking a rebranding to the Transportation, Utility, Farm & Food Corridor (TUFFCorridor). This means that 29,000 unused acres in YEG & YYC would also be prioritized for agricultural production and the establishment of an Alberta Food System.

Alberta consumes 66,000,000 food items/day. 24,090,000,000 food items/year.

Developing an Alberta Food System and feeding ourselves is the largest economic development opportunity Alberta has right now.

Event Action specifics:
You can assist this event action by simply writing a brief email to (please cc or bcc us at policy@growcalgary.ca):

To: infrastructure.minister@gov.ab.ca

Subject Access to TUC Land & Rebranding the TUC

Attn Prasad Panda, Minister of Infrastructure Alberta

1. Please identify which lands are available through the TUC Agriculture Lease process.

2. Please send me an application form for this land.

3. Please change the name of the Transportation & Utility Corridor (TUC) to the Transportation, Utility, Farm & Food Corridor (TUFFCorridor) to better reflect its potential.

4. Please use TUFF Corridor land assets to grow food, build a powerful food system, create thousands of JOBS & for #FeedingAlberta.


Your name

ps You can also cc premier@gov.ab.ca & your MLA.

Post your letters & responses. Together we can get Alberta Growing!

When the Going Gets Tough, the TUFF Gets Growing.

1 year ago Grow Calgary had a commitment for new land from the Alberta Gov + Infrastructure Alberta. This is not an action about Grow Calgary exclusively. It is about access to almost 30,000 acres of unused land in Edmonton & Calgary presently (mis)managed by Infrastructure Alberta so that we can build hundreds, even thousands of farms and projects to stimulate our economy in these unprecedented times. Access to land is step #1 in building an Alberta Food System.

ABC's of an Alberta Food System

A=Access Land
B=Build the small scale infrastructure

A global pandemic & a year later, #FoodSecurity is more important than ever. It is very unfortunate that Infrastructure Alberta manages 29,000 unused acres of land in our 2 largest cities in the arbitrary & myopic manner they do.
They stubbornly refuse to allow access to even small parcels of land (1-20 acres) and they've denied Albertans access to this land for 40 years.

Cuba became so reliant on the Soviet Union for food they failed to create their own food system. When the Soviet Union collapsed, it resulted in severe food shortages for Cuba. Alberta & Canada’s dependence on the USA/China for our food is risky and a gamble we do not have to take.

Enough is enough. Albertans require access to land in order to create new jobs by building an Alberta Food System that is independent, resilient, robust, local and does not rely solely on foreign food production to #FeedAlberta.

Beginning on 01April2020, the joke is no longer on citizens. There is no longer any justification for withholding this enormous land inventory from citizens wanting to build a resilient, robust, accessible, fair & local food system.

A campaign to call out Infrastructure Alberta on their 4 decades of hoarding land is being launched. Join us in asking land assets to be used for growing food, building a powerful food system, creating jobs & #FeedingAlberta.
Now is the time to put pressure on Infrastructure Alberta and convince them that Infrastructure isn't exclusively roads & bridges. A healthy food system should be part of our infrastructure priorities. This is referred to as Social Infrastructure or Heart Infrastructure, as opposed to Traditional/Hard Infrastructure.

Thank you for your efforts everyone!

Growing Together!

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Extreme Cold Mismanagement at Emergency Management


Extreme Cold Mismanagement at Emergency Management

Homeless populations are particularly vulnerable to extreme cold weather. Bitter cold is life threatening to the homeless and other vulnerable individuals. 

Contrary to their own official documentation and policy, Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) failed in their duty to respond promptly and effectively to the extreme cold weather event Calgary experienced from 12Jan2020-19Jan2020.

Unlike Edmonton, Calgary has no official policy or protocol on Extreme Cold Weather Response to Protect the Vulnerable. 

Edmonton City Extreme Weather Protocol
Edmonton City Policy: Supporting Vulnerable People During Extreme Weather Conditions
Edmonton responds to Extreme Cold 

What CEMA was supposed to do, but didn't:

CEMA Annual budget: $5.2M

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Alberta government breaks promises and reneges on commitment to Grow Calgary Community Farm

Grow Calgary is Canada's largest community farm, providing 300,000 meals a year to Alberta's poor.

Over the years, Grow Calgary has provided food experience and education to more than 18,000 Calgary and area students for free and volunteer opportunities for more than 32,000 people.

Dealing with the Ministry of Infrastructure has been a nightmare for Grow Calgary. They are bullycrats and will say and do anything, even mislead the public, to implement their agenda. The situation with Grow Calgary is an example of the unscrupulous manner in which Infrastructure Alberta operates. The corporate culture of Infrastructure Alberta is septic.

Here's a pic of the senior bureacrats from Infrastructure Alberta coming to Grow Calgary to tell us to immediately vacate and leave the community farm.

Here's the breaking story of the Alberta Government and Infrastructure Alberta breaking their Agreement with Grow Calgary Community Farm, courtesy of Darren Krause at Livewire.

Grow Calgary may have seen its last harvest after a recent letter from the province appears to renege on a $300,000 agreement-in-principle reached earlier this year to move the urban farm.
The group was forced to move from its former northwest Calgary location near WinSport, presumably because it was adjacent to the transportation utility corridor where work is being done on the West leg of Calgary’s ring road. A previous contract for that area had expired.
In late January, a last-minute deal was struck for a new, 15-to-20-acre parcel of land in the city’s southeast, just east of Stoney Trail.
Grow Calgary received a letter from Deputy Infrastructure Minister Shannon Flint dated July 3, outlining what Alberta had already provided the urban farm and that there would be no more support available. LiveWire Calgary has a copy of that letter.
“Throughout this time, a significant amount of public funds has been spent in support of Grow Calgary. With that said, the Province has now entered into a time of fiscal restraint and will no longer be able to provide additional support to Grow Calgary,” the letter reads.
The letter continues by saying that a license for the proposed site is still available, but all remaining expenses must be “resolved” by Grow Calgary.

Celebration of Alberta agriculture

Paul Hughes, president and executive director of Grow Calgary, said the letter comes at an opportune time for the Alberta government – a time when agriculture is being celebrated during the Calgary Stampede.
“It’s in the middle of Stampede, this is all about farms and agricultural history. And here we have the government going after us,” Hughes said.
Grow Calgary opposed the move from the original northwest location, citing no specific explanation from the province why they had to be relocated. Previously, the province told LiveWire Calgary that the contract had simply expired, and they were willing to provide both new locations and financial support to move.
The province did indicate in previous interviews that the land was next to the transportation corridor near the west leg of the new ring road, but they could not confirm what its actual purpose would be in ongoing construction work.
Hughes said the vacated land still has no activity on it and they could have stayed. At least for the interim.
Right now, Grow Calgary’s current project is in the development permit process with the City of Calgary. There was to be work done on an access road (that would have been funded through $200,000 in promised leasehold improvements), and both electricity and agricultural grade water have to be secured.
Hughes said the City has been great to work with; the province, he said, has been an endless mess of hurdles. The agreement was originally crafted by the province, he’s adamant Grow Calgary didn’t ask for anything.
“We’re an example of when citizens take matters into their own hands, and try to find solutions to address this health, nutrition and food access issue,” Hughes said.
“So, we don’t really ask the government for anything. Initiatives like ours should be encouraged.”

Grow Calgary future unclear

Two requests by LiveWire Calgary for further details have been made to the Province. Neither one had been acknowledged or responded to at the time of publishing this story. If and when the province responds, it will be included in the story.
The Alberta government letter did state that they’d helped find a new location. It also said they’ve provided clean up support for the previous site, logistical support for the relocation of machinery, provided opportunities for volunteers to move dirt and trees. It also said it provided a new licensing agreement.
(Hughes said the tree and soil-moving opportunities were in winter when the ground was frozen.)
Hughes isn’t sure what the future holds for his organization. The leasehold upgrades aren’t affordable for the non-profit, volunteer-driven group, without the agreed-upon provincial help. It essentially brings things to a standstill.
“I guess they’ve decided to pick a community farm that grows food for giveaway to social agencies as where they’re going to start doing fiscal restraint. We’re going to be the ones that lead that charge?” Hughes said.
“I don’t want to play the victim. We just want to get our farm up and running.”
Over the years, Grow Calgary has provided food experience and education to more than 18,000 Calgary and area students and volunteer opportunities for more than 32,000 people, according to Hughes.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Healthy Heroes + Veterans Association Food Bank + Bite Club

My logo design (Precision tuning by Blackwater Creative) being used for the Veterans Association Food Bank
Cool to see these donation boxes around the community. 
Next step in advancing healthy food access is the adoption of another idea I have called Healthy Heroes.

1st pilot ran succesfully!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

2017 Calgary Municipal Election: Candidate for Mayor: Paul Hughes

2017 Calgary Municipal Election: Candidate for Mayor: Paul Hughes

twitter: @paulyhughes
facebook: Paul Hughes for Calgary https://www.facebook.com/PaulHughesYYC
instagram: @PaulHughesYYC
Paulin8/Paulinate Blog: Paulin8/Paulinate Blog
Cell: 403.383.3420
email: paul@growcalgary.ca