CBC News: The National | Vaccine ultimatum, Women in Afghanistan, Drone delivers lungs
Why so many health care workers are saying? No, we went for it with a complete disregard about the freedom of choice, the scramble to replace them record high prices at the pumps. What do you think of these gas prices? I think its ridiculous, why its likely going to get worse an uncertain future in afghanistan? I have lots of goals that i think i wont reach them. Women and girls left in limbo, waiting to see if their rights will be respected were on the ground in kabul and a life. Saving delivery by drone to be part of the future is kind of really really exciting the short flight that could make a big difference for organ donation. This is the national 19 months into the pandemic. Health care systems are stretched, exhausted and now a new potential challenge. A labor shortage, despite stiff warnings, that their jobs depend on it too many frontline health care workers remain unvaccinated with their specialized skills and training losing even a few. Frontline healthcare workers could push overburdened hospitals and care homes into crisis, but with provincial and hospital vaccine mandates fast approaching, thousands are at risk of suspension in bc, alberta and ontario its a matter of weeks in quebec. It is a matter of days, so quebec healthcare workers have until friday to get their shots or get suspended, yet some remain defiant, despite working through the pandemic and seeing for themselves what kovid is capable of tonight. Allison northcott speaks with two healthcare workers about why they are willing to risk their jobs in just a few days.
Chantale bear will be suspended from her job in a long term care home because she wont get vaccinated. She says she wants to rely on her own immune system. I think we went for it what a complete disregard about the freedom of choice and then imposed it when i really feel that it is not the only way to go about winning this war against our immune system. The vaccines have been proven to be safe and effective in preventing covid19 still. Iber is one of more than 20 thousand quebec healthcare workers who are not adequately vaccinated. One unvaccinated nurse told cbc news that, while he does not believe in conspiracy theories, he says he should be free to make his own choices about his health and his body. Weve agreed not to identify him because he fears it could impact future job opportunities. Its just a little too far, in my opinion, i understand the whole social aspect may be being taken away from you. You cant travel, you cant go out to restaurants and eat, but even to say you cant work and earn money is preposterous. I would have thought that at this time, especially with the fact that were we are in need of nurses, that people would do a last effort. Quebecs health minister isnt backing down, saying it will take some reorganizing to fill the gaps when workers are suspended. But marianne gattas, who runs a private care home for adults with disabilities, is worried about finding staff to replace four unvaccinated orderlies.
If i dont suspend them, i could lose my license and have to shut down those homes and its not just a business that youre shutting down its human beings living in there. This doctor says he doesnt expect a major impact at his hospital friday that theyre used to dealing with staffing shortages im, not sure i want to work with somebody who decides to neglect the the kovid pandemic. At this stage, it just doesnt make sense id rather work harder. The province says it will announce its contingency plan to make up for any shortages later this week, so allison what happens to the health care workers who do get suspended? Well, the health minister says that they can still get their shots and they can return to work once they are fully immunized if they dont they risk losing not only their pay, but also things like seniority and with that deadline. Now, just days away, the health minister reiterated today that he has no plans to extend it all right, allison northcott in montreal. Thank you. Youre welcome. Well, bc got a preview of what those staffing shortages mean all health care workers there need to be vaccinated by the end of the month, but workers in long term care and assisted living facilities have, until the end of the day today to get their first shot Or take mandatory leave without pay. Greg rasmussen shows us the immediate impact. So this is our dining room area day.
One and the new mandate is already causing problems at this long term care facility, where 10 staff are barred because they havent been vaccinated. Theres been lots of conversation of what are we going to do? Whats whats the plan moving forward, and how are we going to get done? What we need to get done? We call this main street. Maintaining minimum staffing levels is leading to tough conversations. Those are the most difficult when were telling somebody hey. I thought you, you know. I know you thought you were leaving at three, but i dont have someone to relieve you and you actually now need to stay till 11.. In some bc, health districts up to 12 percent of workers remain unvaccinated from the province. A direct plea as well as top words, this is a measure that protects you as a health care worker and keeps you able to care for those who are more vulnerable. It will be subject to progressive discipline up to and including termination vaccine related staffing crunch is also facing toronto transit. Fifteen thousand workers are being told to either get the shot or dont come to work. Its also checking with retirees to see if theyre willing to return to the job well have a better idea over the next few days. You know where we may face some labor issues and then plan our service or our operations. Accordingly, vaccine mandates are also coming at months end for air, canada and westjet employees.
Similar requirements at united airlines in the u.s recently saw most holdouts get the jab to keep their jobs. Very complex. Businesses are seeking legal advice on these new, largely untested laws. They have to demonstrate to their customers that and and be seen by their customers, to do it to be doing everything they can to provide a safe working environment, but at the same time you know they dont want to lose twenty percent of their work force. Despite the workforce, pain vaccine proponents say, the mandates are a vital step in slowing the pandemic. Greg rasmussen, cbc news vancouver, and we have breaking news from washington tonight. The cbcs katie simpson joins us from the u.s capitol so katie. What do we know fully vaccinated travelers? Will be allowed to enter the u.s at land and ferry border crossings for non essential purposes? That means canadians wanting to drive across the border to visit loved ones or take a vacation will be able to do so. Starting in early november senior biden, administration officials confirmed the policy changed during a call to reporters, though there are many details that still have to be sorted out. The exact date has not been determined. Theres no decision on what kind of proof will be required to show a travelers vaccination status and perhaps the biggest issue. The u.s has not made a decision on whether it will allow travelers into the country who received astrazeneca or mixed doses of the coveted 19 vaccine.
The centers for disease control still has to make a call on both of those issues. Katie simpson, cbc news, washington back on this side of the border hospitals in new brunswick, are moving to the red alert level as the province deals with a surge in covid19 cases. So that means elective surgeries will be reduced or canceled, so staff can be redeployed to ers and intensive care units. New brunswick now has more than one thousand active cases in ontario. The fourth wave has so far been somewhat calm, infections and hospitalizations flat and for now manageable, and for many parents and students that has fueled hopes that the days of online learning are in the rear view mirror. But as deanna sumanek johnson shows us, covid is getting into schools and in some cases, getting out of hand. This high school is the first one in toronto to be closed because of a covet 19 outbreak, leaving close to 800 kids out of class and shifting online. We were really annoyed. Just you know. We got our kids vaccinated to be back into school and here we are closed again. Silverthorne collegiate is one of six schools in ontario closed due to an outbreak, its a story bubbling underneath ontarios success. This fall while the provinces infection numbers have plateaued. Schools now contribute up to 30 percent of daily new infections. Its a similar situation in quebec. Vaccinating more students might prevent more school closures. Something torontos medical officer of health has asked the province to mandate, but ontario, like other parts of the country, hasnt moved to do that.
Yet, given that the province actually has the records and has the jurisdiction, they are probably the more effective party for vaccination policy and those under 12 who make up the majority of school cases, cant be vaccinated. Yet anyway, these parents are advocating for smaller class sizes. Our kids are crowded in classrooms. They cannot even maintain a meter space of social distancing, but this epidemiologist says other measures are even more important for limiting infection. Airborne transmission cannot be underestimated, especially with delta, which is so hypertransmissible. What does that mean? It means we got to focus on ventilation. Number two wear good quality masks. Another measure hed like to see used more extensively rapid tests, which can quickly identify infected students before they show any symptoms. Last week the province said it would send these tests to schools in areas with high transmission rates, so that outbreaks can be stopped before they prompt shutdowns. Like this one deanna sumanec johnson, cbc news toronto in the u.k, a scathing new report says britains. Initial response to covet 19 was one of that countrys worst public health failures. Ever if wed locked down a week earlier, we might have even saved half of the number of deaths in that initial wave. The report by a joint parliamentary committee says the uk made serious mistakes at the start of the pandemic, including a decision to manage the viruses spread. Instead of suppressing it, apparently in a bid to achieve herd immunity, one of the biggest names in the national football league is out of a job.
John gruden stepped down as the coach of the las vegas raiders. After it emerged, he had sent emails, denigrating gay people, black people and women, jamie stration. Now, on the implications for the nfl, i stand here in front of everybody apologizing, i know im not. I dont have an ounce of racism in me for a while. It looked like john gruden would weather the storm after an email. He wrote 10 years ago that contained racist language surfaced im not going to answer all these questions today. I think ive addressed it already. He coached sunday, when his las vegas raiders hosted the chicago bears. Then came the avalanche, the new york times reviewed emails, gruden wrote between 2010 and 2018 littered with racist, sexist, homophobic and transphobic language. He checked almost every box for a bigger inner races. Sports columnist, william rhoden, says its a dramatic fall for the super bowl, winning coach and broadcaster a revered football mind in the midst of a 10 year, 100 million dollar contract. You cant have a guy like that. Patrolling your sidelines, particularly at a time when the nfl is talking about diversity and black lives matter. Grudens emails came to light as part of a separate nfl investigation into workplace misconduct. That saw the league review nearly 700 000 emails. Who are his enablers? Who are these people who are now kind of scurrying back into these dark corners, who are just smart enough not to put their racist beliefs in emails? Some see an irony in grudens.
Rapid departure from a league that sees players accused of sexual misconduct. Take the field each week and wonder if grudens resignation will change anything. Oh, i think its massively widespread. I think this is again a person that got caught. One of the leagues biggest stars maintains people like gruden are outliers in an evolving league. I feel like the player, then the coach of today is a more empathetic advanced, progressive, loving, connected type of person. Late today, the nfl players union said the league should release all of the emails, its reviewed. The question is: what else is out there and who else will fall? Jimmy strashes, cbc news toronto. A federal court judge has rejected a request by major general denny forte to challenge his removal. As head of canadas vaccine rollout, the judge says: forte must first file a grievance with the military. Before going to the federal court, forte was removed from the position in may amid an allegation of sexual misconduct. He denies any wrongdoing. His lawyers argue his dismissal amounted to political interference. About 8 000 people in nunavut are being told they cannot drink their tap water, even if its filtered or boiled. In this case, we suspect that there is petroleum, some type of petroleum product that has entered the water system. The city of iqaluit has declared a state of emergency. Since the warning went out, some residents have been collecting water from a local river. Others have been buying bottled water in bulk at grocery stores.
It is unclear how the fuel contaminated the water supply, like just about everything. Gas prices, took a dive at the start of the pandemic, but they have come back strong. The average across canada now is reaching a new record. As cameron mcintosh explains, high prices at the pumps is likely just the beginning. At 1, 42 9. This average winnipeg gas station sits just below the national average gas price from one pump three stories in just five minutes: lisa gassing up her f 150 putting in just 20.. What do you think of these gas prices? 142.9? I think its ridiculous thats, a big truck. You got there yeah, it cost me about almost 175 phil ordamian. Now a former uber skip the dishes driver. I dont do any of those anymore its not worth it, and remy owns two cars and a motorcycle, maybe not for long. People need to make change their habits, and i know my wife and i have been considering buying an electric car, so at just around 1.44 canada is experiencing its highest ever average gas prices. Remember average whats, expensive in toronto or regina can still sound like a deal in st johns or vancouver where prices are closer to 160.. A confluence of factors are driving it rising oil prices, a weak, canadian dollar and supply demand. Imbalances of coven demand plummeted early on. In the pandemic, so did production now, demand has come roaring back and production is still trying to catch up.
I think it will get better. It will take time. In the meantime, rising transportation costs may soon be reflected in many goods, like groceries already facing upward pressure. It impacts your bottom line, it impacts your your cost and therefore it impacts the you know. The pricing you have to put out to market and if youre running a furnace, natural gas or heating oil winter is also looking expensive. It all has many worrying about the overall rising cost of living were hearing from seniors that maybe weve connected with for the last five years and the first for the first time, theyre calling me and asking me about food banks. So then how high might it go? Analysts say there are so many variables right now that clear predictions are hard, although a national average gasoline price over a dollar fifty doesnt sound or feel all that far off right now, cameron, mcintosh, cbc news winnipeg. Of course, daycare can be a huge expense for canadian parents. One of the trudeau governments, signature promises heading into the last election was a national 10 a day daycare program. So far, seven provinces and one territory have signed on with ottawa to make that a reality, but the biggest holdout ontario travis danrash shows us whats. Behind this disagreement. Music katie boone considers herself privileged. She can afford fifteen hundred dollars a month for her sons, child care, others, cant families, particularly who are on a single income or do not get any type of parental leave.
Top up are really really disadvantaged in a system that costs you know the same as mortgages. Boone says the cost of child care is a major reason. Shes waiting to have a second child, but right now, negotiations between ontario and the feds are at a standstill. Ontarios education minister insists the province should get a larger injection of cash because it offers full day kindergarten. Something stephen leche says the federal government is not currently considering. We hope for a deal that is affordable that is accessible were going to continue to make the case to our federal colleagues that we want a better deal sources within the ford government say the province has about 40 percent of the countrys population, but right now is Only slated to get about a third of the federal funding, still pressure is mounting to inca deal the fact that doug ford is so out of touch that uh that he doesnt understand uh the benefit that this will have is absolutely shocking. I just wish that the ford government would listen to the the clamor thats going on in this province, but the need for child care everybodys, saying the pandemic needs to change the way we think about child care. Ontarians will head to the polls in the new year with child care likely to be a major campaign issue. I think, unfortunately, politics gets gets in the way at the end of the day. If, if the objective is to support families and to support growing our economy, then we need to be able to support 50 of the economy, which is women getting back into the workforce.
She hopes leaders put politics aside and deliver on a service. She says is essential for ontario families, travis stanrash, cbc news ottawa a worldwide first, a set of lungs delivered to a toronto hospital by drone. If you could fly a drone in the city, then you can fly a drone anywhere coming up the delivery that could revolutionize organ transplants. Plus the taliban has put a stop to higher education for afghan women. Will they get to return? I have lots of goals that i think i wont treat them well hear from young women afraid for their futures and a bc womans brush with death. The explosion had caused debris all over my face. She tells us about the mysterious rock that landed right where she slept were back into. Welcome back technology has long been a crucial part of our health care system, as it improves, so does our ability to save lives, and tonight we have a glimpse into how drones could be a big part of that future with an unprecedented delivery flight that for one Man meant life itself. Thomas daggle explains for a peek into the future when drones may help save lives. Look up that box is specially made to transport human lungs donated by one dying patient, to help another in dire need, like adac diagnosed, with pulmonary fibrosis in 2019. By last month he could barely breathe. It was just close to unbearable of having no air at 63 years old hes recovering from a successful double lung transplant.
After waiting months for an organ donor, then agreeing to take part in a world first be part of the future, its kind of really really exciting and its an honor. For me, i couldnt believe that this was happening because i was so afraid to lose him in late september. In the middle of the night came word of an organ donor. The lungs arriving still inflated with oxygen in that special box cooled to the right temperature. The drone flying one and a half kilometers from toronto, western hospital to the toronto general hospital surgeon in chief, dr shaf khashoggi, was there on the roof for that unique delivery. If you could fly a drone in the city, then you can fly a drone anywhere right, and so that was what we set out to do here. To prove that concept he says instead of transporting organs by vehicle or on a plane using an unpiloted drone, can cut down on emissions and save lives by saving time. This feat took planning and permissions from regulators, not to mention dozens of test flights involving a quebec firm and its u.s parent company. The advent of drones flying organs routinely is something that is very likely to occur within the next 10 years. Khashoggi himself performed at the lung transplant giving odak a new lease on life. I pledge that ill. Take care of these dogs very well. He could be the first of many getting that gift from above thomas dagg, cbc news toronto, a b.
c woman got a rude awakening. The other night and the fright of her life did a branch fall on her house in golden. If only the answer was that simple, i was sound asleep in my bed and um the dog barked a couple of times and then right after that there was an explosion um i jumped out of my bed and ran across the room and turned on the light And i could see that there was a hole in my ceiling scared and with no clue as to what had happened. Ruth hamilton got 9 1 1 on the phone, so i went back into the room and flipped back one of the two pillows i was sleeping on and the rock was there and i just said, theres a rock in my bed. They sent an officer over right away, he came in and looked and said, yeah you got a rock in your bed, the officer guessed, it might be a meteorite, so they contacted western university, which agreed it was a meteorite hamilton has loaned it to the school. For a month of testing, but she owns it and wont soon forget her cosmic encounter. You know i love like everybody else going out in the night sky and watching for shooting stars and stuff, so they have a whole new perspective to me now well for many looking up at the skies last night, it wasnt rocks falling. Instead, it was a spectacular show of northern lights that people as far south as vancouver, could see well explain why, but first girls they have to go to school period.
We are in afghanistan, speaking with women and girls, about their hopes and their worries for a future. Under the taliban, stay with us welcome, back afghanistans economy is teetering on collapse and the g20 held an emergency summit today to tackle the growing humanitarian crisis. The group agreed it has to engage the taliban, but stop short of recognizing it as a government. A recognition will have to acknowledge that the talibans will be judged for what their deeds are, not their words, so the g20 says giving the taliban formal legitimacy would hinge on things like visible progress on human rights and education for girls theres. The rub. The taliban continue to offer assurances to women, but after two decades of real progress, many of their rights are being taken away. Cbc news is on the ground in afghanistan. Were susan ormiston spoke with women whose lives once brimmed with potential and are now seeing them transformed into ones with little hope, Music, so welcome. Now the carefree sounds of girls that play at school Applause, busting out of these last difficult months in kabul, at recess, shrugging off exam preps, enjoying the sisterhood of students, a basic right now, deeply threatened in afghanistan. Malalai school has educated girls in the afghan capital for decades grades 1 through 12., but this year the most senior class is grade 6., when school restarted. Three weeks ago, any girl older than these students was told, stay home. A thousand girls from this school had no choice.
The new taliban government has banned secondary education until further notice for girls grade 7 and up, and that could be ranas fate next year. We want to continue our studies. Do you and your girlfriends? Your girlfriends talk about whats happening now that school is suspended beyond grade 6 Music. I got more sad when i heard the upper classes cant come to school. I dont know if this is our last year. If next year we can come or not, the taliban says its reforming the curriculum for islamic studies and that in time, girls will fill these halls again, but at malalai 22 classes are eerily empty and 33 teachers are at home out of work. The new principal was promoted after the last one fled in august during the evacuation. Do you trust that the government will allow older girls to go to school? Yes, we have a lot of hope. The girls school will be fully open because half of the society belongs to our women. Now we see the taliban, their vision has changed Music, but for many women life is nothing like. It was two months into the new taliban regime. Theyve been dumped from jobs, barred from teaching excluded from government, told to go home and wait, but for what, before the taliban even got here, beauty salons had blacked out images for fear of reprisals and many are predicting a return to the dark days under the old Taliban when womens ambitions were discarded in a heap, kabul university, preparing young women and men for prominent jobs is closed.
For now the chancellor was replaced with a young taliban follower. This is from my teacher. He accepted me as a brilliant student masuda. Not her real name is a first year engineering student, and this is for science, 18 years old, with a portfolio of good grades and leadership. Diplomas grand ambitions until two months ago, im so sad, im so upset. I feel disappointed and i have lots of goals that i think i wont reach them. That must be terribly hard. I cant be like a girl that should marry and burn babies. I want to work, i want to study and do something for my country. They know that our education is our power and if women dont have the permission to study, the next generation also will be illiterate. Her mother, a teacher, is also home. Her class is cancelled, theyre forced, like so many to reconfigure their lives with little income. While the new regime decides their fate, masuda is determined, but i dont stop. I will study. I will review my english whatever they do. I wont stop at first. This fall women tested their power protesting against the taliban, but met with harsh resistance, sometimes violence. A demonstration in front of the presidential palace was short lived and i can raise my voice. A young activist was there shes a student of law and politics in her fourth year and she paints images of women and peace and the freedom she fears is lost in lots of tv interviews.
The high ranking officers of taliban told that that its not a necessary that girls got educated im, an educated girl and its a insulting and abusive thing for girls. So at the beginning you had more hope, yeah. I hope, but now when i see the reaction of the new government i losing my hope day by day, the taliban is under pressure from inside and out. Womens rights are part of the negotiations to release international funds back into afghanistan. Prominent activist mabuba saraj is holding the taliban to account. The taliban dont have much time to really sit down and think and and dwell and rethink and and rethink and rethink. There is no rethinking about this girls. They have to go to school period because the world is going to make a decision whether to recognize the taliban or not, and a whole lot of it depends on their action whether they are going to let the girls go to school or not Music. These little girls cant know their pawns in a political fight to protect their basic rights to learn at any age, hard won by the last generation of graduates at malalai high school Music. But if the taliban refuses to bend, two decades of progress could be snuffed out. Susan ormiston cbc news, kabul, and today, two powerful women from the world of politics and literature, released their pandemic project, a novel that is a warning. Their interview airs tomorrow on the national but heres a sense of who they are and what they built.
Former u.s secretary of state, hillary clinton and former cbc journalist turned canadian crime writer. Louise penny. They were mutual fans, then friends, now co, authors of a political thriller called state of terror. An alt right, supporting incompetent former president looms large, a female secretary of state trying to undo the dangerous damage. Is the heroin theres also this moment where the secretary of state goes after president ivanov in russia? What does it feel like for you secretary clinton, to write that, like how cathartic was that yeah? It was cathartic, because you know somebody like that poses a continuing danger and we didnt want people to forget that their book is out today. Their story goes on im, hoping that really you know, people in countries like yours and mine pay the most attention, because we have, in my view, the most to lose. If we dont understand what the threats are, this is a a wake up, call to all of us to to be vigilant to pay attention to do, to stand up talking fiction and the facts that feed it tomorrow on the national all right and coming up still Tonight many offices in calgary have been sitting empty during the pandemic, but now some are being converted. The adversity of it breeds creativity, the innovative solutions that could fundamentally change, calgarys, downtown core plus theres, a ton of misinformation out there, and some of this misinformation even appears. Like its evidence based battling vaccine hesitancy, a doctor tells us some of the biggest fears against the shot next website.
Netflix is standing by dave, chappelles comedy special, the closer which some have criticized. As transphobic a top executive says, he doesnt believe chappelle crosses the line on hate and the special will remain on the streaming service and it is underway, as jeff carter won the face off for the pittsburgh penguins and after two seasons stunted by the pandemic. The nhl is back to business as usual tonight, kicking off a normal 82 game season, most arenas back at full capacity and according to the nhl, 99 percent of players are vaccinated against covet 19., but nationwide uptake isnt quite that high. Nearly 15 percent of eligible canadians are still completely unvaccinated, and misinformation about the safety of the shot is at least partly to blame. Kashana read now on efforts to replace fiction with fact, since this first shot in canada, 27 million canadians have made the choice to get fully vaccinated against covid19 thats 82 percent of the eligible population, but all these months later many people still remain vaccine hesitant. This is the vax facts website. Dr latif murgy has been fielding questions and concerns daily from people still on the fence. His clinic offers one on one phone discussions with doctors, as our policies are nudging, people towards vaccination. The people who have questions and some reservations are now coming to us and were having our number of appointments, explode, so ill call her since may more than 700 people have called in and after getting the facts, 82 percent of them move forward with getting a shot.
Theres, a ton of misinformation out there, its coming from various sources. A lot of that is cherry, picked evidence. Some hesitancy surrounds vaccine side effects, but serious issues are extremely rare, making up just .008 percent of all doses administered in canada and while its difficult to make a direct link between side effects and vaccines. Health, canada is monitoring. Three issues reported instances of blood clots and a nerve condition called guillain barre syndrome and inflammation of the heart or the tissues around it known as myocarditis or pericarditis. When the cases do happen, they tend to be mild, they tend to resolve after a few days and they dont seem to leave any lasting heart damage, but contracting covid can have far worse health outcomes if you have coven 19, even a mild case of it. Your risk of having a blood clot having a stroke having myocarditis, is exponentially higher public health officials stress the best protection is the vaccine enough of a reason to get these people to roll up their sleeves, tashona reed cbc news toronto. A pretty special light show happened overnight last night and people in some unexpected places got to see it plus Music love. This story well show you the marching tribute to canadian rock and roll stay with us Music im jamie poisson tomorrow on cbcs daily news, podcast front burner how taiwan has become a pawn in a global competition between china and the west and what that means for its People subscribe wherever you get your podcasts welcome back despite widespread vaccinations, predictions of a quick return to office work and busy downtown cores.
Well, they havent panned out, according to one analysis of cell phone gps data compared to before the pandemic. Foot traffic is still down around 70 percent or more in toronto, ottawa, montreal and vancouver, and down 50 percent in calgary, which was hit hard by an economic downturn well before covid. That one two punch has some wondering if calgarys old downtown is ever coming back, but aaron collins shows us from that. Adversity comes creativity. Sometimes you have to tear things down before you can build them up again. This calgary office tower is being reimagined once home to an oil and gas company now being converted to affordable housing and a shelter for homeless families after years of sitting vacant. The architect behind this project says its a sign of the times in this city. We really have to rethink how do we leverage the the buildings and the infrastructure that we have and turn it into. You know the metropolitan city that calgary always wants to be the times have changed in downtown calgary about a third of the offices here now sit empty, an exodus that began when the price of oil crashed made worse when the pandemic hit. Now the push is on to figure out what to do with all those empty offices. I think whats really happening in our within our office inventory is people are starting to look at it more as a an opportunity. What can we do with this? Thirty percent vacant space from university lecture halls to art galleries.
Everything is on the table for calgarys downtown reboot, including turning its empty offices into farms vertical agriculture touted by some as a way to repurpose the citys empty towers. If you have office space that is dwindling from a usage standpoint and we can flip in some quote unquote farm equivalent product out of there. I think thats, a pretty useful scenario, but bringing calgarys core back to life is no easy task. At the end of the day, we have to be calgarians have to be pulling all the levers. We have to look at a few repurposed buildings. We have to look at a few demolished buildings. We we have to get tax incentives to uh and financial incentives to attract businesses, to move to calgary back at that office tower getting a makeover, a building sense of optimism, despite the glut in office space. The adversity of it breeds creativity, and if you dont have that problem, then you dont have the creativity to kind of solve it. The future of calgarys downtown remains up in the air when the pandemic ends. Many will return to these office towers and those that do will find a transformation underway, one designed to change the very fabric of the citys core, erin collins, cbc news calgary well for canadas north. The breathtaking display of the northern lights is a regular event. This time of year, but last night that incredible show from mother nature it traveled south for those lucky enough to have a clear sky.
The show did not disappoint those vivid strands of light, seen dancing over large swaths of western canada and the northern united states. Thats beautiful, oh look at that nice little tail its something youd usually have to travel hours north to see, but this time a rare solar flare event triggered a geomagnetic storm. Normally, you only see that at the poles, where a magnetic field dips down, but sometimes a really strong storm, can have those uh electric charged particles excited thats, what we call them and thats how they show these great colors and dont worry if you missed it. This time keep your eyes on the sky, because there could still be more chances to watch. The sun cycle goes into periods of more activity every 11 years and 2019 was the start of an active cycle. So maybe well see more of these northern lights over the next few years, farther down in latitude, which would be nice fantastic up. Next, an american marching band pays tribute to a canadian rock icon Music, get that the story behind this incredible halftime performance. In our moment. Next, Music, all right theres, a pretty good chance. You might know that canadian classic tom sawyer a 1976 hit from rush. So now it has received a modern twist. All thanks to a few rush fans in an ohio university marching band their salute to canadian rock. Is our moment we have an assistant director and a percussion instructor actually here who are uh fans of of rush and suggested this.
This show a couple of years ago and of course, when neil piert died around that time, we thought it would be a really great idea just to pay tribute to him and pay tribute to the band we we dedicated the second number of the show limelight to His memory and so of course, had the motorcycle formation um there and then the the actual drummer playing on you know as many bits of percussion instruments as we could possibly get out there on the field. There is no greater feeling in the world. I think for us, when you know were paying tribute to to somebody into a group and that group that were trying to show that respect for and pay that tribute to um certainly not only acknowledges the performance but but seem to really enjoy it. I couldnt be happier, but i think thats, the most rewarding part of this whole thing i got ta say i love everything about that doesnt. It kind of remind you of those aerial drone displays at the olympics right just kind of, but the low tech version uh and i love a good cover, and that is as it mentions. Oh, i know you love a good cover. Yeah weve had that conversation, its fantastic, that rush loved it too, and you know why now again it was supposed to happen in january 2020.