The Bog

The Bog is where thoughts, opinions, discussion pieces, and action converge. Influential thinkers from the water community are invited to share their insights on current or controversial water topics. Please note that the views expressed herein are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Alberta WaterPortal.

By Mary Kruk, Water Data Specialist, DataStream

Water data pie chartAs of 2020, the water quality in 60 per cent of Canadian watersheds remains unknown. Although diverse groups across the country monitor their local waterways and collect a great deal of water data, this information is often not available or easily comparable for various reasons, including if the information is stored using different formats.

This lack of easily accessible water data is a major problem. It makes managing Canadian watersheds, which make up 20 per cent of the world’s freshwater, much more difficult, as creating good public policy depends on the right data to inform decisions.

Eight years ago, one of the most devastating floods in Calgary’s history carved its way through southern Alberta, displacing thousands of people from their homes. One such Alberta resident, Victoria Pleavin of WaterSMART Solutions, now recalls her personal experience on the eighth anniversary of the 2013 southern Alberta floods.

"In June 2013 I was living in Mission, Calgary, less than one block from the Elbow River,” Victoria recalls. “I remember the morning of June 20th seeing several pictures posted of extreme flooding happening upstream in Canmore and thinking, ‘that is coming my way.’”

The Alberta WaterPortal Society’s submission for Let’s Talk About Water’s 2021 International Film competition emphasizes the benefits that properly managed grasslands can have on water quality and ecosystem health.

By Alixx Hettinga, Communications Coordinator for the WaterPortal Society

The Alberta WaterPortal Society is releasing fun, new, online materials to make learning about water an adventure you can have from home.New Nexus Visual

These new resources include interactive games and short animations that make learning fun for everyone. They explore how human actions impact the Nexus between communities, agriculture, and energy, and the resource that ties them all together: water. As the population in Alberta increases, users must contemplate how to balance the demand for water for food, energy, people and the environment. 

Every July, Friends of Fish Creek hosts its annual Creekfest event, an entertaining and interactive learning experience that is both family friendly and free of charge. This year, COVID-19 has unfortunately restricted our ability to meet in person, but that will not impede the continuance of this amazing educational opportunity. To keep its yearly public outreach going strong, Friends of Fish Creek is putting on Creekfest - Reimagined!, a collection of integrated virtual offerings from multiple organizations over the course of July 18-24, 2020.