Atlantic Chapter

Halifax Diverse Naturalizes Your Yard

Do you know the impact that gardening with native plants can have on local wildlife? Bill Freedman does! As a professor of ecology and long-time practitioner of the principles of naturalization, he wants to spread the word about the benefits of using native plants in your garden. Walking his own talk, Dr. Freedman naturalized his own yard years ago, curating a collection of native plants where a lawn once dwelled, now home to a vibrant collection of greenery, exploding with colour throughout the various growing seasons.


City Birds and Cities for Birds

Mark Butler of the Ecology Action Centre discusses how individuals and cities can make yards and urban areas more friendly for birds. Specifically, we must eliminate risks to birds such as cats, but we also must stop eliminating important habitat. What constitutes important habitat might surprise you however...


Learn more about our programs on the Halifax Diverse facebook page, or subscribe to our mailing list by emailing with subscribe me in the subject line, or by clicking here.

Fracking wells don't stand the test of time, experts say

Zack Metcalfe
Sierra Club Atlantic
Date published: 
Sun, 06/01/2014

Dr John Cherry, a hydrogeologist with the Council of Canadian Academies (CCA), says fracking wells in Canada aren't built for the long haul; they tend to spring leaks.

"In my view, well integrity is likely the most important shale gas issue," said Dr Cherry in Toronto, Thursday, May 29. Dr Cherry chaired the CCA's expert panel on understanding the environmental impacts of shale gas extraction (fracking). This panel released its report in early May.

The Tale of One Birder

In the lead-up to our June 1st bird walk led by Kate Steele of the Nova Scotia Bird Society, fellow birder and photographer extraordinaire Russel Crosby writes about how he got into birding, and gives novices a few tips. Join us on June 1st on the Shearwater Flyer Trail to put your learning into practice!


As a long time birder I occasionally get asked about how I initially got into bird watching as a hobby, but I don’t remember any one specific event that led to a lifetime love of birds. My first interactions with birds were through my older brothers who were serious duck hunters before I was even old enough to fire a gun. Although I did go on a few of their early hunting trips where I witnessed ducks being killed, I opted instead to observe birds rather than to try to shoot them. My father supported my burgeoning hobby and bought me books he thought would interest me. They did!


Halifax Diverse Walks the Shearwater Flyer Trail

Our first walk of the summer, we're going to be led by Kate Steele of the NS Bird Society on a birding walk for beginners. We will be meeting at 8:30 (exact location TBA), and our walk will last about 2h. Kate is highly experienced at leading walks for novices, and will tailor the walk to those who are new to birding!

This walk will have a limit of 16-20 people, so get there early to ensure you get a spot. If you don't get a spot, it's a wonderful trail to enjoy on your own as well and has a bounty of treasures to discover along the way. Bring binoculars for optimal bird spotting, and your camera if you have a great telephoto lens. We'd be happy to share your photos after the walk!

Walks Schedule for Summer 2014

After much delay and with great excitement, we're happy to announce the 2014 summer walk schedule for Halifax Diverse Walks. We have a wide range of experts who will be leading walks this year from birding to the history of McNabs Island! Updates will be posted on the facebook page (and corresponding events), and on this blog as well. On this page you can find more information about individual events by selecting individual events under the "Get Involved" menu above. You might also notice we've changed our name to reflect the recent decision of the city council. A huge thanks to Jon Burke of Jon Burke Web Design for updating our logo.

Some general information about what to expect on our Walks:

Letter to NL Public Utility Board Regarding Investing in Holyrood Power Plant, Newfoundland

Publication Date: 
April 27, 2014

We call on the Public Utility Board to consider investing in greener energy sources like renewable energy and energy efficiency, rather than increasing our investment in the oil-fired Holyrood Power Plant. NL Power proposed a $120 million investment in an oil-powered 100 MW turbine for the plant.





Family Earth Expo


Sierra Club PEI (Atlantic Canada Chapter) presents the 2014 Charlottetown Family Earth Expo April 21st (Easter Monday). 

This 4th Annual Expo will be a free admission, all-ages event with seed planting, display booths, an art show ), clothesline art and children's art activities, face painting, music, electric vehicles, food, outdoor activities, and speaker presentations on environmental action and awareness. 


WHEN: Monday, April 21st, 1 - 4 pm 


I HEART NS WATER Taking World Water Day to New Depths!

March 19, 2014

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Join us for a family fun event to celebrate Nova Scotia’s water on World Water Day. Participate in games, music, crafts, and bring your swim suit (and a big warm towel) for a polar dip to honour the importance of clean safe water for all life!

Musician Callum Moscovitch will also be there to share some tunes!

This even is co-organized by East Hants Fracking Opposition Group (EHFOG), the Council of Canadians, and the Atlantic Chapter of Sierra Club Canada. Contact us for more information or to volunteer: gretchenf-AT-sierraclub-DOT- ca or call 902-444-3113.

When: World Water Day, March 22, 1- 3 pm 

Location: Banook Canoe Club, 17 Banook Avenue, Darthmouth, NS


Hope to see you there! 


Exploring Common Ground: Presentations


KEYNOTE ADDRESS: From Conflict to Working in Partnership: Having a Community Seat at the Table - Paul Hawks, East Boulder Oversight Committee, Stillwater Good Neighbour Agreement


Consultation, Twyla Gaudet, Kwilmu'kw Maw-klusiaqn (Mi'kmaq Rights Initiative)


Nova Scotia Environment's Regulatory Role in Mine and Quarry Projects - Peter Geddes, Nova Scotia Environment


Why Mining Matters - Sean Kelly, Mining Association of Nova Scotia (MANS)


Exploring Common Ground: Participant Workbook

Thank you for being a part of Exploring Common Ground: Creating a Framework for Better Dialogue Around Mine and Quarry Issues in Nova Scotia


To support your participation in the event, our speakers and session chairs have provided the following background material for your review.



Final Agenda


Background Documents


Fracking Action Coffee House & Film Screening

Come out to hear about actions taking place here in Atlantic Canada to stop fracking from damaging our precious water resources! Sierra Club Atlantic will share stories of what local citizens are doing to stop fracking, followed by a screening of Josh Fox’s Gasland 2.

The Garden of Eat’n Café & Food Fare event will support our efforts to educate people about the risks of fracking and to defend Jane Doe, an indigenous community leader who is protecting the voices of the people speaking out against fracking in New Brunswick.

Please RSVP by calling (902) 431-8050 so we make sure no one is turned away!

WHAT: Gasland 2 Film Screening and Fracking Action Coffee House

WHERE: Garden of Eat’n Café & Food Fare, 6293 Quinpool Road, Halifax

WHEN: 7:00 pm -9:30 pm, Tuesday, January 28th

Exploring Common Ground

Exploring Common Ground - Creating a Framework for Dialogue Around Mine and Quarry Issues in Nova Scotia was a groundbreaking forum hosted by Sierra Club and Ecology Action Centre. It brought together industry, community, and government participants to share perspectives and identify tools for communication, consultation and decision-making.

For many years, Sierra Club members, volunteers and staff have been involved in preventing  negative impacts of mines and quarries on the environment and their communities. Read more about this work  here.

There are many common issues that arise when a mine or quarry is slated for a particular area: what if we could address them before 'shovels are in the ground' ? We will begin to find proactive solutions by Exploring Common Ground

Summary of Sierra Club Atlantic's Annual Gathering September 6 & 7th on Prince Edward Island

Another successful ACC AGA was held on PEI, including a special evening entitled 'PEI Needs Clean Water - Come Join the Movement to Protect It!' Focusing on protecting Prince Edward Island’s precious waters, a panel discussion was led by: Don Mazer from the Winter River-Tracadie Bay Watershed Association, Andrew Lush from 'Don't Frack PEI',and Irene Novaczek science advisor to 'Save Our Seas and Shores- PEI'.

Over fifty people attended the evening, which highlighted key threats to clean, abundant water, including the lifeblood of the Islands fisheries, tourism, and aquaculture industries, the waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

Russell Lake Takes Root Community Tree Planting - Successfully completed Oct. 5

"To everyone who came out to Russell Lake Takes Root Oct 5, I can't thank you enough! From the businesses who made the event so hospitable to the community members who helped plant 1600 trees in just under two hours, what an amazing demonstration of how communities come together. I hope people enjoyed themselves today and that you might consider joining us the next time we have an event! Photos from today may be posted in the future on the HRM Diverse Facebook page..

HRM Diverse Walks Shubie Park, Aug. 3rd

DATE & TIME:  Saturday, August 3, 2013, 1 - 3 pm

HRM Diverse Walks is a monthly walk created for those of us who are interested in learning more about the history and nature in and around the city we call home. This month's walk will be led by Mr Bernie Hart, volunteer heritage secretariat at the Fairbanks Centre and a former teacher and chief education curator at the Nova Scotia Museum. As a researcher at the Fairbanks Centre, he's an expert in the human history of Shubie Park, and is also very knowledgeable of the plants and wildlife in the area. But don't worry, he'll be the only expert on the trail with us, everyone else will be just as eager to learn as you are!

HRM Diverse Walks Point Pleasant Park


Saturday, June 29, 2013

1:00pm until 3:00pm


HRM Diverse Walks is a program designed for amateur naturalists and those who wouldn't consider themselves naturalists as a way to get out into nature and learn a bit about nature in our city. This month's walk will be led by Dr. Bill Freedman, a professor of ecology and environmental science at Dalhousie University. But don't worry, he'll be the only expert on the trail with us, everyone will be just as eager to learn as you are!