Action Heroes honoured for green initiatives

Smog fighter Bonnie Denhaan is crossing her fingers that the “no idling” mindset will take hold sooner than the decades it took “smoke-free” to become mainstream.

Smog fighter Bonnie Denhaan is crossing her fingers that the “no idling” mindset will take hold sooner than the decades it took “smoke-free” to become mainstream.

Denhaan was one of the five recipients of the Parkland Airshed Management Zone ACTION HERO (Action for a Healthy Environment by Reducing Ozone) Awards at the Provincial Building in Red Deer on Wednesday.

It was also Clean Air Day.

Denhaan spearheaded the Sunnybrook United Church green initiatives including designating the church parking lot an idle-free zone. She challenged other churches to do the same and for residents to turn off the key.

Denhaan also criticized the omnipresent long lines of vehicles in drive-thru restaurant lanes calling them a “sink hole of pollution.”

Vehicle emissions are Red Deer’s largest source of air pollution.

Reg Watson, PAMZ chairman, said there are a lot of health repercussions such as lung health, asthma, heart and respiratory diseases that are linked to air pollution.

The annual awards were handed out to individuals and organizations that take the lead to reduce ground-level ozone, a component of smog.

Watson said it is commendable to see community members trying to improve the air quality in Red Deer and area.

He said over the years PAMZ has noticed the industrial pollution particularly from the petroleum industry had been going down on a fairly even rate but now has levelled off.

“Keep working at it,” he said. “Everybody can do something. Every little bit helps.”

Nancy Hackett, the city’s Environmental Initiatives supervisor, said the city cannot do it alone.

“We are trying to get our house in order to be efficient with our own water use and our own energy, waste but we need the 100,000 people that live in Red Deer to do their part,” said Hackett.

The City of Red Deer completed its greenhouse gas emissions corporate inventory last year.

The inventory will allow the city to establish a baseline and set targets to reduce its corporate impact on the environment.

Later this year the city will turn to measuring the community’s greenhouse gas emissions inventory.

In 2009, the City of Red Deer introduced its idle-free zone program that included an internal idle-free policy for the city fleet, the idle-free school program and partnering with other organizations.

In recent years, the fleet has switched over to more enviro-friendly and fuel efficient buses. Red Deer Transit was a HERO Award recipient.

Earlier this year the city also adopted its climate change adaptation plan which will position the municipality to be ready in case of flooding, drought or other extreme weather events.

To find out more about the city’s idle-free campaign, go to and more Environment Week events visit

To find out more about PAMZ visit

Just Posted

Red Deer woman target of robbery in broad daylight, near police station

Walking home, in broad daylight, Barb Smith never thought for a minute… Continue reading

Red Deer County developing regional plans

Red Deer County must prepare 14 intermunicipal agreements according to new provincial rules

Tsunami warning for B.C.’s coast is cancelled after Alaska quake

VANCOUVER — A tsunami warning issued for coastal British Columbia was cancelled… Continue reading

Sewage spill shuts beaches along California’s Central Coast

MONTEREY, Calif. — Nearly 5 million gallons of sewage spilled into the… Continue reading

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

RDC chosen to host 2019 men’s volleyball national championship

Sports enthusiasts in Red Deer will have more to look forward to… Continue reading

Police is still looking for Second World War army passport owner

No one has claimed a rare Second World War German army passport… Continue reading

DJ Sabatoge and TR3 Band kick off Sylvan Lake’s Winterfest 2018

Central Alberta’s youngest DJ will open for TR3 Band kicking off Town… Continue reading

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

WATCH news on the go: Replay Red Deer Jan. 21

Watch news highlights from Red Deer and Central Alberta

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month