Monthly Archives: March 2009

STV for BC – Let the Debate Begin

It’s almost time to vote again! YAY! Even more exciting, it’s two votes in one! We’ve got an referendum question on the ballot this year – the single transferable vote (STV). It was also on the ballot in 2004, but we’re giving it another shot after a narrow loss.

This Wednesday night seems to be THE night for electoral shin digs in Van. Starting with the launch of BC Vote, a new non partisan source of news for the upcoming election. Then moving on to the STV Debate – will be a great debate between Antony Hodgson and Bill Tielelman.

I’ll be hitting both events with Get Your Vote On stickers and voter registration forms on hand. Transit between events is super easy.

BC Vote Launch Party

Date: Wednesday, April 1st, 2009
Time: 5:30 pm
Place: Redwerks Rooftop, 321 Railway Street in Gastown

“The goal of BC Vote ( is to provide timely information about the current state of political affairs in the province of British Columbia. Admittedly, news outlets and information sources often tend to have a bias towards a specific political party. With BC Vote, we attempt to provide a pluralistic, non-partisan, and non-biased (as much as possible) panoramic view of the political landscape of the province of British Columbia as we near the 39th Provincial General Eelection (May 12th. 2009).”

Register for the event here!

STV Debate


Want to know more about STV? Join me at the STV Debate on Wednesday night, sponsored by COPE.

“Is STV right for BC? A debate on STV and electoral reform in our province – THIS WEDNESDAY!

When: Wednesday, April 1st at 7pm

Where: Creative Individual Studio — #110 60 East 5th Ave

Cash bar and DJ after debate FREE — sponsored by COPE

With Bill Tielelman from the “No” committee and Antony Hodgson from the “Yes” Committee


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Filed under Events, People Power, Politics

Climate Cafes: Green Sex Cafe

Green what? I’ve written about Green Sex before, but this is different – now you can be part of the conversation about what it means to have green sex.

The Climate Cafes have invited two of Vancouver’s greatest sexperts, Carolyn Stewart (Associate Director of Health Promotion at SFU) and Jessica Peart (Co-Manager of Executive Services of Options for Sexual Health) to

discuss sex in a variety of ways; from the academic to the erotic. Whether it’s global sexual health, environmentally friendly lubes and toys, or sexy green tips to try with your partner, this Climate Café will make you think, smile, and maybe even blush.”

Join the Climate Cafés team for a can’t miss informative and sexy romp!

Where: Pane Vero Café & Bakery – 952 Commercial Drive

When: Wednesday, March 18 from 6-7:30pm

Find the event on Facebook

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Vancouver Food Policy Council Spring Update

I was so excited to see all the amazing workshops that were posted in the Food Policy Spring Update! You can see the full list here, but I wanted to highlight the following because they look especially cool:

If you haven’t visited the Food Policy website, it’s worth checking out. There are a few job opportunities posted, as well as a list of volunteer positions. So many ways to get involved!

Check out the Greater Vancouver Community Gardens site. It’s a social network for all of us out there involved in community gardens or looking to start new ones. It’s updated regularily, and I think it will make a grea hub for information on Vancouver’s gardens!

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Filed under Urban Agriculture

It’s Offical! Vancouver Allows City Chickens

I’m sitting at the first Vancouver Green Tech Forum. Mayor Gregor Robertson opened the event, and in his address he confirmed that the amendment to the Animal Control By-law has passed! This means Vancouverites can now legally keep chickens in their backyard. I don’t have all the details, but I believe that there is a limit to 2 hens (I could be wrong about this!).

Photo credit: The Green Life

Photo credit: The Green Life

There are lots of North American cities that allow city chickens, and there are many benefits. So you’ve got a backyard, and want some urban hens of your own? I just collected a few resources that I thought I would share with you.

A friend of mine also just started a Facebook Group that you may want to check out. Chickens in Vancouver will become a place for dialogue on keeping hens in urban Vancouver.

Gregor also mentioned the fact that City Hall lawn will be ripped up the Spring to make way for a new community garden! How exciting! This is just the sort of leadership and initiative I’ve wanted to see come out of City Hall.  The new garden will be built in partnership with Society Promoting Environmental Conservation (SPEC) – a long standing organization in Vancouver that has done amazing work to make our city greener.


Filed under Politics, Urban Agriculture

City Chickens for Vancouver

Photo credit:

Photo credit:

This evening Legalizing Backyard Hens was on the list of motions on the City Council meeting agenda, but I’ve heard through the grape vine (and a reputable source) that the vote will actually happen on Thursday March 5th.

We’re down to the wire folks – if you support an amendment to the current Animal Control By-law that will legalize keeping hens in our backyards, please email your support to

Vancouver media has picked up on the City Chickens by-law in recent weeks. CBC interviewed Heather Jarvey, who is already illegally raising two hens in her backyard.

“Vancouver is one of those communities claiming to be very sustainable and green,” Jarvey said. “What’s more sustainable and green than having a chicken in your backyard that gives you healthy, practically free protein?”

Jarvey scorns charges that chickens are loud and dirty, countering that hens, unlike roosters, make little noise. She added that chickens produce much less waste than dogs or cats, and their manure can be composted… read more.

Almost every time I go visit my Mom, she has the newest rendition of the PERFECT chicken coop design. Although she doesn’t live within Vancouver, so the by-law won’t apply, I find her Swiss-army to gypsy caravan style chicken coop designs inspiring…. I could imagine them all in the back yards of my neighbourhood.

To support the City Chickens:

  1. email
  2. Go to the City Council meeting on Thursday March 5th.
  3. Make a brief address to the Council about the by-law at Thursday’s meeting (please sign-up).
  4. Join the Chickens in Vancouver Facebook group.

Originally posted on Rocks & Water.

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Filed under Politics, Urban Agriculture