September 25, 2020

The Yukon dreams of electric cars, morel mushroom hunting and Norway's secret to weathering the pandemic. Read it all in this week's Up Here newsletter.

This year's mushroom hunt looks a little different... (Illustration by Beth Covvey)


Hi all!

It’s my turn to takeover this week's newsletter and I’m so happy to be writing to everyone. Kahlan is the name and weekly newsletters are my game! ...Kind of. You’ll see me from time to time as Jacob, Dana, and I alternate writing to you.

This week in office news, I left isolation (yay!) and joined the rest of the team in-person. Jacob travelled to Inuvik—keep your eye out for Up Here Magazine's next issue to see what that’s about—and next Monday Dana’s going on a trip to the Nahanni. It's an exciting time at Up Here. We also had Timbits in the office yesterday, which I personally think takes the cake in terms of exciting developments.

But enough of my blabbing. Time for some northern news.

See you again soon,
Kahlan Miron
Editorial Intern


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This Wednesday, Canadians finally heard the federal government’s throne speech—and, despite few northern-specific points on their list, the promises the government outlined have Northerners talking.

The speech left Northwest Territories Premier Caroline Cochrane hopeful, wrote Cabin Radio. She was particularly excited about the speech’s points on housing, public transit, clean energy, broadband internet, and action against racism. (Cabin Radio)

Meanwhile, CBC explored the speech’s comments (or lack thereof) on mining, as well as Northerner’s feelings on CERB being phased out and the “thrill” of the promise for universal childcare. (CBC)

And while the Yukon wasn’t specifically mentioned every time, MP Larry Bagnell says many of the topics—including food security, COVID-19 testing in remote areas, tourism, and climate change policies—naturally involve the territory. (Whitehorse Daily Star)

Meanwhile, Nunatsiaq News provided a Nunavut-specific perspective on the throne speech by analysing covered topics like CERB, infrastructure, broadband, and elder care. (Nunatsiaq News)

Need some good news? After a viral tweet highlighted the cost of school supplies in Nunavut, people across Canada donated to schools within the territory. Nunatsiaq News explores what happened, as well as the territory’s school funding formula. (Nunatsiaq News)

The Yukon bets on electric cars as the key to reducing carbon emissions with its new climate change strategy. The territory wants to put 4,800 vehicles on Yukon roads by 2030, with a series of incentives and rebates to help get the wheels turning (ha). Transportation is a heavy contributor to carbon emissions in the Yukon and the goal is to reduce road emissions by 30 per cent. (The Narwhal)

It’s time for this year’s Arctic Salmon count and, well, the numbers have certainly changed. The Arctic Salmon Project’s count is drastically down this year—as in, “2,200 fish in 2019 [to] fewer than 10 this year” kind of down. But that might actually be normal: as salmon continue to spread throughout the North, scientists are beginning to form a better picture of their natural rhythms, and this dramatic up and down could be part of a larger pattern. (Cabin Radio)

COVID-19 has caused unprecedented interruptions in everyone’s yearly schedules—but maybe some patterns are better disturbed than others. One writer explores the pandemic’s unexpected benefits for the Yukon’s local mushroom picking scene. (Up Here)
(Photo by Samantha Stuart)


Here’s a little Arctic inspiration for how to handle the pandemic: the Norwegian friluftsliv lifestyle, which roughly translates to “open-air living,” encourages time outdoors no matter what the weather looks like. As winter approaches, friluftsliv offers an alternative to social isolation indoors. (National Geographic)

Or maybe you’d prefer a tip for mental zen. Alaskan musher Blair Braverman explains how dog sledding helped her adjust to planning for the unknown. (The New York Times)

Meanwhile, read this Teen Vogue profile on Quannah Chasinghorse—an 18-year-old Han Gwich’in and Oglala Lakota activist fighting to save the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska—for a dose of inspiration. (Teen Vogue)
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