Naturalist Kevin Van Tighem, former superintendent of Banff National Park, takes us on a hike he completed over the weekend, surveying coal mining activity in Alberta's Oldman River. Energy economist Andrew Leach and environmental law professor Martin Olszynski chime in on reports President-elect Biden will cancel Keystone XL, and offer insight into the UCP's controversial Allan Inquiry into foreign attacks on Alberta oil. Law professor Kristen van de Biezenbos explains the significance of the Keystone XL story, and whether or not Alberta can recoup its recent multi-billion dollar investment. Plus, it's Monday, so that means another inspiring edition of "Positive Reflections," presented by Kuby Energy!
"As DC falls, Bitcoin rises," a viewer tweeted Ryan on January 6th. Bitcoin Well CEO Adam O'Brien joins for Real Talk on the popular cryptocurrency, including his take on its wild value fluctuations over the past week. This week's Real Talk Round Table takes a look at "The Next 30" movement, featuring co-founder Chad Park, Salimah Kassam, and Carman McNary. After Coal Association of Canada president (and former Alberta Environment Minister) Robin Campbell argued "Selinium is just salt" on Thursday's show, biologist John Adcock and geochemist Colton Vessey chime in on the environmental impact of open-pit coal mining in the mountains, and the challenges around environmental reclamation. Plus, per tradition, Ryan wraps up the week with another rousing edition of Trash Talk!
With more and more Canadians paying attention to open-pit coal mining in the Rocky Mountains, Coal Association of Canada president (and former Alberta Environment Minister) Robin Campbell argues the industry side. Jason Doucette, president of Alberta Fly Fishing and Conservation, explains why he's opposed to Alberta's coal expansion. With 9-1-1 services being consolidated across the province, Alberta fire chiefs from Red Deer, Lethbridge, and Fort McMurray lay out why they think it's a bad idea (hint: it's a matter of life and death). Former chair of the Alberta Teachers Retirement Fund Greg Meeker tells us why he's "incensed" at the United Conservative Party transferring the $18B teachers' pension to AIMCo. Sportsnet radio host Andrew Walker shares his thoughts on an "all Canadian" NHL season, and has a little fun with his vintage "Jespo Mug".
The Alberta government broke a promise that teachers would maintain control of their pension fund, and Alberta Teachers Association president Jason Schilling has something to say about it. Minister Jim Carr is back as the Prime Minister's Special Representative to the Prairies. He takes us into his top priorities, including vaccinations and economic stimulus. Country music star Corb Lund, rancher Laura Laing, and Lougheed-era coal policy architect David Luff share their concerns around coal mining in the Rockies. Oh, and Corb treats us to an impromptu performance by candlelight. High school science teacher Jason Zackowski checks in from the science lab at Red Deer's Lindsay Thurber High School to explain how his dogs (yeah, his dogs!) Bunsen Berner and Beaker gained tens of thousands of followers on social media. Jason also takes a few minutes to blow stuff up - an integral element of any decent interview about science.
With President Donald Trump banned from virtually every social media platform, and Alberta talk host Danielle Smith leaving AM radio for Locals.com, we check in with content manager Idris Fashan for insight on political commentary across the digital landscape. Strategist Jason Lietaer, former advisor to Prime Minster Stephen Harper, takes us into Prime Minister Trudeau's cabinet shuffle, and the implications around another looming federal election. Real Talk viewer Mariah Braun shares her perspective as a Black woman living in northern Alberta, after a photo surfaced of a man in a KKK hood outside a Grimshaw, AB post office. Entrepreneur Claire Theaker-Brown details how her company, Unbelts.com, fell victim to government favouritism in the context of Alberta Education's mask procurement controversy. Citizen journalist Victoria Love tells us why she started using TikTok to tell the stories of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, and how she's offering support to bereaved families.
We review results of our Real Talk Question of the Week, after more than 4,300 of you chimed in on how you feel about Alberta's government. (Spoiler: there are major trust issues.) Biostatistician Ryan Imgrund gets into Canada's vaccination numbers, explains what Alberta's doing right, and what Ottawa needs to do better. BloodWatch.org founder Kat Lanteigne explains why she's so troubled about changes to blood donation laws in Alberta, namely the UCP repealing the Voluntary Blood Donation Act.
On the one year anniversary of the tragic downing of flight PS752, Javad Soleimani, Daniel Ghods, and Peyman Parseyan share their grief, the details of their journey, and the reason for their continued advocacy for justice. After releasing an open letter to the provincial government, asking for a stop the plan to consolidate Alberta's 9-1-1 dispatch, Alberta mayors Naheed Nenshi, Tara Veer, Chris Spearman, and Don Scott explain why they're so concerned, and shine light on the strained relationship between the UCP and Alberta's municipalities. Sprawl editor-in-chief Jeremy Klaszus takes us into the relationship between Premier Jason Kenney's government and Westjet, and lays out what might be influencing provincial policy on things like travel and testing. Plus, wrap up the week with another boisterous edition of Trash Talk, presented by Local Waste!
How are we to process what happened in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, January 6th? What do the next two weeks look like for our neighbours to the south? What are the implications for Canadians and the rest of the world? The morning after a monumental day in American history, an attempted coup in the nation's capital, former US Ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman explains the significance of what happened, and what's to come. Researcher Frank Graves chimes in from Ottawa, political scientist and author Ian Bremmer joins from Washington, D.C., and Toronto Star journalist Alex McKeen reports from Victoria, B.C. Plus, Ryan reads an email from viewer "Lucas" in no-holds-barred fashion, leading to one of our more memorable show extros.