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August Update 2019

Dear Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour
Once again thanks so much to Shane Goudreau for his truly wonderful portrait of Molly Brant that remains ON THE WALL in Doug Fluhrer Park.  And a shout out to any and all artists that the wall is now a legal wall and they are welcome to come to Doug Fluhrer Park and do something on one of the segments.

1) Tannery Development Proposal: Parks Canada’s Comments 
2) Continuing Concerns about Turtles and the Third Crossing
3) And No Birds Sing!
4) Depave Paradise Event: Aug 24
5) Paddle & Pint: Aug 29 and Sept 5
6) Fridays for Future Heads Up, Sept 20
7) Queen’s Sustainability Week Heads Up:  Sept 29 – Oct 3
8) Feds Inject More Funds into Efforts to Protect Great Lakes
9) Sandy Pines Wildlife’s Turtle Incubation Program
10) Utilities Kingston’s Customer Satisfaction Survey

1) Tannery development proposal: Parks Canada’s Comments
Thanks so very much to Susan Miller, Planner, Parks Canada, Rideau Canal Office, Smith’s Falls for the following informative comments.
“An overarching challenge with this property, regardless of the nature and scale of the development, is the extensive contamination on the land as a result of the industrial past of this area. That unfortunately requires the removal of vegetation on the land if it is going to be used, which is a process prescribed  by the province. As the canal was inscribed on the world heritage list for its engineering technology and military history, and the historic site is limited to the waterway, Parks Canada does not have jurisdiction over activities on the upland. From the proposal originally submitted to the City of Kingston, the buildings were shown outside the 30m min development setback from water required by the City, which correlates with the 30m buffer zone extending from the boundary of the inscribed property (high water mark in this case). Parks Canada’s administration of the canal does not extend in front of this property, so we do not have permitting authority for any in-water or shoreline works, such as shoreline alterations. However, an environmentally-friendly shoreline treatment, which takes into account contaminants in the water, is appropriate.
Our office is reviewing this planning application as an adjacent landowner, to understand potential impacts to the canal. In this case, we are interested in the 30m buffer zone and in the visual impact of development on the historic site, so our interests are focused on the landscape treatment of the waterfront and the interaction of the waterfront-facing buildings with the buffer zone and canal – aspects such as building height, massing and design.
I understand the proponent and the City continue to discuss the proposal.  I hope the information above and your meeting with the Mayor last week helped to clarify various aspects of this project.”

2) Continuing Concerns about Turtles and the Third Crossing
As promised in an earlier update, following our meeting with the Third Crossing Team, here is what our turtle group is now requesting from Holly Wilson and the 3rd Crossing Team. We are very grateful that they are reaching out to us in the best interests of the turtles.

“Dear Holly,
Thanks so much to you and your Third Crossing team for meeting with us to discuss our concerns about turtles.
In all fairness, to appropriately respond to the environmental concerns that both the Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour and Turtles Kingston have regarding both the temporary and permanent structures for the 3rd crossing bridge, we would need written responses to the following questions and concerns.  Hopefully these could be received as soon as possible, certainly before the upcoming public consultation, in order to provide adequate time for review and useful input. 
After we have received the documents and written responses that we are requesting below, and have had sufficient time to digest them, we would love to schedule a follow-up meeting to discuss the issues further.
Questions and Concerns:
1) We would like copies of the following:
a) the relevant documents that detail both the design of the temporary causeway and the final design for the permanent bridge (drawings, schematics etc.).  
b) the final environmental assessment report from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.
c)  the Detailed Impact Assessment provided to Parks Canada for their comments as well as a copy of the final comments made by Parks Canada in response to the DIA.
d)  the detailed description of the monitoring plans for the turtles during construction, including what will happen with turtles and/or turtle nests that are found at or near the construction site. 
NOTE: There is a possibility that ‘marked turtles’ from research being conducted by researchers affiliated with Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour may be discovered at or near the construction site.  If this happens we would truly like the reporting of the sighting(s) to be communicated to the staff of the Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour.  So far we have noted that some of the turtles that we captured, marked and released in Doug Fluhrer Park have travelled as far north as the 401 and they have certainly been observed on the east side of the Great Cataraqui River, both north and south of the proposed Third Crossing location.

2.  We would also really appreciate the following information:
a) the detailed plans for turtle mitigation for the entire project for both the temporary causeway installation and removal and the final bridge structure including the presumed transportation of any turtles injured during construction to Sandy Pines Wildlife Centre or other similar facility.
b) details as to both the temporary exclusion fencing that is to be installed during construction and the permanent exclusion fencing that is to be implemented when construction has been completed.  This should include details as to the properties of the exclusion fencing and the method of installation that will be used in both the temporary and permanent stages of construction.
c) details of the plan for long term monitoring and maintenance of the exclusion fencing. (We have noted problems in other jurisdictions when monitoring has not been adequate.)
d) details of the immediate and long term plans for the provision of alternate nesting sites, eco tunnels (culverts) etc., for both the temporary and permanent mitigation structures.
e) details as to the installation and removal of the substrate used to construct the Earthen Berm/Causeway.
f) details of the ‘restoration plan’ for both sides of the river and the river bed once construction has been completed. 
g) We understand that there have been previous projects that were used as reference for the planning of the 3rd crossing that implemented an ‘Earthen Berm/Causeway’ that had similar environmental concerns. We are requesting a copy of those comparisons – specifically, the comparison of the completed project to that of the projected one. 
h) the finalized plan that addresses the issues associated with snow removal – contaminated water – salt/oil/gas that could make its way into the river.
i) the plan detailing any removal or capture of any sediments during the construction process and the method and location of disposal. 

Again thank you so much for reaching out to us.  We truly appreciate the opportunity to share our knowledge and to help with the preservation of these at-risk species.
Mary Farrar, 
Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour

3) And No Birds Sing!
In case you have also noticed it when you ride your bike on the trail along the east side of Belle Park there are no birds in the redone portion going south from Belle Park whereas there are lots on the old track going north from the entry of Belle Park to the apartments at John Counter.  
I’m assuming the reason is the lack of density.  On the redone trail the trees are spaced apart not giving the birds enough cover.  And this section of the trail has so much less biodiversity of all sorts. Hoping that these concerns can be front and center with both any new trail developments as well as with the “naturalization” of Belle Park.

I expressed these concerns to Neal Unsworth, Manager of Parks and here is his reply: 
“Thanks Mary,
Interesting observation. Yes Belle will have a full planting plan developed where we can get into the details… with public consultation, naturally.

4) Depave Paradise Event, Aug 24
What:  These are community-based, volunteer events where people get together to manually remove asphalt and create green space. This provides habitat for wildlife, helps cool our cities, and allows water to be slowed and filtered before it enters our waterways.
When: Sat, Aug 24, 9:00 am – 1:30 pm
Where: Mulberry Waldorf School, 25 Markland St. Kingston
More Info? Recent article about the Depave at St Lawrence College: and more info about Depave Paradise in general here: .
NOTE: If you are interested in attending contact Jason Jobin for more details and to confirm numbers. Jason Jobin, Water Projects Coordinator, Red Squirrel Conservation Services, 99 York St., Kingston : 613-547-8122 or 613-547-4228

5) Trailhead’s Stand-Up Board and Paddle & Pint Events: 
Stand-Up Board – Our most popular paddling adventure! This 90 minute clinic will introduce you to the balancing art of Stand Up Paddling; a great way to explore your favourite waters. You will learn the fundamentals of efficient board movement, safety and maybe a party trick or two!
Mondays 5:30pm, Doug Fluhrer Park – $50+hst/person includes all gear and Trailhead instructor
Paddle & Pint – A nice follow up to our Discover series, or for those of you that have some paddling experience, and are looking for some company. Join us on Thursday evenings for this 2 hour exploration of Kingston’s inner harbour by Kayak, followed by a visit to one of our favorite downtown pubs! .
Aug 29 & Sept 5: 6 pm, Doug Fluhrer Park -$50/person + hst includes kayak, equipment and Trailhead Guide

6) Fridays for Future Heads Up, Sept 20
The following was received from Kathleen O’Hara
“The young Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg’s students’ organization, Fridays for Future, is calling on students to strike internationally on Friday, September 20.  This is just days before the UN meeting on climate change.
Students from Kingston began striking every Friday before the summer and are continuing to demonstrate on that day from 10 to 2 in front of city hall.  Adults are definitely welcome to express their concern about the growing Climate Crisis!
Now, these local students and their supporters want to organize a bigger action for September 20!  We are planning to rally at Market Square at 12 noon where, so far, MPP Ian Arthur and Dianne Saxe, the former Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, fired by Doug Ford, have agreed to speak.
There will be events all afternoon.  We hope to include as many members of the community as possible in our day of action, certainly including members of the labour movement!  We also welcome any ideas/suggestions from CUPE that might make the day more powerful and effective. “

7) Queen’s Sustainability Week Heads Up: Sept 29 – Oct 3
What: Sustainability Week strives to cultivate a culture of sustainability on campus and promote the sustainability initiatives that take place on and off campus. Participants are provided the opportunity to engage and inquire about the environmental issues facing our local and global communities and ecosystems. Sustainability Week brings together Queen’s staff, faculty, students and Kingston businesses and community associations interested in sustainability to host a variety of events throughout the week that highlight different aspects of sustainability and discuss how we as individuals and as a community are tackling climate change. The events for the week are organized according the Five Days, Five Ways themes which are Sunday: Explore, Monday: Act, Tuesday: Inspire, Wednesday: Eat and Thursday: Engage.
When: Sunday, September 29 – Thursday, October 3 
Where: A variety of events are hosted all over Queen’s campus throughout the week.
More Info? or at the Sustainability Office Website ( for all full schedule for the week.  
a) The Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour will have a booth focusing on turtles and the Tannery Project on Tuesday, October 1 from 10 am until 2 pm.  
b) The Queen’s Solar Design Team is hosting a Sustainable Buildings tour and info session on Sunday, September 29th to bring the buzz of solar and alternative sustainable energy straight to your campus! Drop by from 11 am to 2 pm to explore the Solar Education Center’s power, heating and water systems, learn about sustainable building technology from our team of engineers, and find out about our progress on this year’s Solar Decathlon competition! More information here:
c) Local Vibes @SW2019 is an event run by Queen’s Global Energy Conference (QGEC) that will celebrate the end of Queen’s Sustainability Week this year on Thursday October 3rd, 2019 at Clark Hall Pub. The night plans to feature live music, local food, and minimize waste consumption as much as possible.
This is the second year the event will run and QGEC is looking forward to celebrating the end of a wonderfully sustainable week this October! For more information about QGEC or for more information about the event closer to the date, please look for us on social media @queens_qgec on Instagram and Queen’s Global Energy Conference – QGEC on Facebook!

8) Feds Inject More Funds into Efforts to Protect Great Lakes
The following was on the webpage, Aug 9. 
“At a press conference in Burlington this week, Catherine McKenna, the federal minister of environment and climate change, announced that an additional $1 million over three years will supplement the $44.84 million already invested in the Great Lakes Protection Initiative. According to the CBC, the new money will help promote citizen science; fund wetlands conservation to mitigate the effect of climate change; and combat algal blooms, which have closed beaches in Hamilton and prompted warnings in Lake Erie communities.”

9) Sandy Pines Wildlife Centre’s Turtle Egg Incubation Program
Thank you Susan Irving for all you do and for writing this little blog to explain Sandy PInes’s turtle egg incubation program! 
“The incubation program continues to evolve and expand. From humble beginnings, years ago, with a few eggs incubating in the warmth of the top of our Director’s refrigerator, we currently have two incubators and a large dedicated space in our clinic’s Turtle Room for incubating eggs of Ontario’s freshwater turtles.
Thus far this year, we have incubated almost 750 eggs and expect that number will grow as people bring us injured turtles throughout the May-September peak season.
Not all eggs hatch, of course. Some eggs, despite looking normal, have microscopic but lethal injuries as a result of the violent trauma that lead to the death of their mother.
On the upside, we have terrific success with the viable eggs. Once out of their eggs, our hatchlings thrive in the good care they are given until release back into the wetlands that were their mother’s homes.
As incubation temperatures dictate whether the hatchlings will be male or female, we aim for a midpoint that will give us a mix of both boys and girls. We use 28°C as a generally workable compromise across all species.
We have a wonderful new piece of equipment that allows us to detect the heartbeats of turtle embryos as they develop inside their shells. We can say for certain that babies will be hatching this month! Stay tuned! 
When the hatchlings are ready for release, we contact the finder of each clutch to ask if they would like the opportunity to release them. If you are one of these kind people, be sure to ask for a copy of the page of tips created to maximize the successful of each release. A copy will be placed in the hospital chart created for each turtle patient.”

10) Utilities Kingston Customer Satisfaction Survey
The following was received from Utilities Kingston, Aug 19, 2019

“Over the next month,  Utilities Kingston will be calling customers to conduct a satisfaction survey.
The phone calls will start today and Utilities Kingston wants people to know these phone calls and questions are legitimate and authorized by Utilities Kingston.

‘It’s important to check in with the people we provide services to. We’ve been serving Kingstonians for over 150 years and take our customer relationships very seriously. Please share your opinions to help us continually improve our services, as we advance Kingston’s unique multi-utility model to benefit our customers and build better communities,’ says Jim Keech, president and CEO of Utilities Kingston.

Utilities Kingston has contracted UtilityPULSE, an opinion research firm, to call 400 of its 28,000 customers in central Kingston and ask a few questions about its electrical services. When they call, UtilityPULSE will ask to speak to the person who looks after the household’s electrical bill and then proceed with the survey, which takes less than 15 minutes. Customers will not be asked for account, financial or other personal information.

Utilities Kingston is one of many electric utilities in Ontario now conducting customer satisfaction surveys, as required by the Ontario Energy Board.
Questions or concerns about the survey can be directed to customer service at 613-546-0000.

So that’s it until September.
Mary Farrar, President
Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour

So that’s it until September.
Mary Farrar, President
Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour