2022 Fred Olynyk Bursary winner: Alyssa Bollefer - As a community, what changes can be made to reduce the ways in which we’re contributing to the escalation and impacts of climate change?
As a growing community what can we do to help with the current climate crisis? Each person has an impact and an important part to play, but the largest impacts start with community programs. Revelstoke has many good programs in place such as the farmers market and the
recycling program, however, we can still do better. My key three ideas are making the change for city vehicles (garbage trucks, dump trucks, snowplows, etc.) from gas to electric, improving trail connectivity for non-motorized vehicles, and introducing the adoption of biomass gasification.
City run heavy equipment vehicles stay local, which would make for an easy transition from gas to electric. The average garbage truck uses 1gallon every 3 miles compared to the average vehicle using 1 gallon every 25 miles. With the vehicle fleet producing 34% of city produced greenhouse gas emissions in 2007 this would decrease city fuel emissions and be more cost effective for tax payers.
Overall, Revelstoke has good trail connectivity across town but only in the summer. Due to the extensive snowfall we receive, commuting on a non-motorized vehicle in the winter is incredibly dangerous. Prioritizing trail snow removal will present the community with a second safe option to commute around town.
Biomass gasification is a process which turns dry organic waste material into natural gas-like fuel. With the large presence of logging and millwork in Revelstoke this is a prime opportunity to create a new sustainable energy source. As we move away from logging old growth forest and into enhanced silviculture even more organic waste will be created due to the smaller tree sizes. Because there is no current use for this waste, creating a biomass gasification plant near town would be an excellent opportunity to create healthier forest and decrease unsustainable fuel emissions.
With the severity of the current climate crisis, we need to act now. Creating new innovative solutions and implementing them is a large step towards protecting our environment. Revelstoke has witnessed and endured the effects of climate change firsthand and we need to work together as a community and do our part.
John, Steven, "Businessinsider.com" Insider, Dec. 2, 2019. Web. March 2022.
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"Energy.gov" Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, 2021. Web. March 2022.
2021 Fred Olynyk Bursary winner: Sophie Dorriuss - How has COVID-19 Affected you, your family, your community, and your future?
How has COVID-19 Affected you, your family, your community, and your future?
I took the school bus home for spring break in March of 2020, and remember thinking to myself that it might be the last time I stepped onto a school bus. I was right, but back then I never knew how serious things would get. Everyone suffered challenges and no matter how much I write about how bad I have had it, someone will always have it worse. Instead, I want to tell you about how covid 19 changed my life in a positive way and the things that I am grateful for.
When the lockdowns started, my family didn't lose jobs or money. We were privileged to have job security. I never worried about where my next meal would come from. When school went online, I had the privilege of having Wifi, and multiple sources of technology to choose from. My family stayed safe and healthy throughout the past year except for a few scares. Over the course of online schooling, I learned to persevere more than before, and I gained a new level of independence.
After struggling through the challenges of this pandemic, I am choosing to change my outlook. I want to watch my community come back together instead of watching it be split apart. If everyone chooses love and positivity over hatred and anger, this community will emerge stronger and more resilient, just like my family and I are choosing to do. I look forward to learning and growing more in this new abnormal world.
2020 Fred Olynyk Bursary winner: Cohen Lussier - My Vision for Revelstoke
My vision for the future of Revelstoke includes an improved park and trail system, increased funding for infrastructure, and a council that makes informed decisions on development and tourism initiatives. Firstly, I believe our city needs to increase the area of park space and number of trails in town. A bylaw or regulation should be introduced to have a set ratio of parkland to residential/commercial lots and the option to take cash in lieu of land eliminated. Revelstoke also has a limited trail system, with little outside of the Greenbelt and Big Eddy Dyke. Although an elaborate future design has been created, no concrete timeline has been set for implementation.
Secondly, my future Revelstoke has a higher budget for infrastructure maintenance and expansion. My primary focus would be on the addition of sidewalks throughout the city as well as regular maintenance to the roads. There are many areas in town with little or no sidewalks and/or pavement in rough condition. I was pleased to hear that the city has raised the budget for infrastructure in the coming years as well as the construction of a roundabout at the Fourth St/Victoria Rd. intersection.
Lastly, my future council would make decisions on development and tourism with meaningful consultation from the citizens of Revelstoke. They would take into consideration all points of view, the official community plan, the results from the visioning surveys, and potentially hold referendums for large issues. In conclusion, my vision for Revelstoke would have an extensive park, trail and sidewalk system, and a council that made their decisions with the values of Revelstoke residents in mind.