Canadian Science News

Canadian scientists support American scientists now
According to The Guardian, Canadian scientists are offering peer support for scientists from the United States in light of the muzzling of some of them in the wake of recent events in America. Canadian scientists are not immune to the effects of being “muzzled” in their scientific work, having been so for about a decade from the previous Conservative government. Now, Canadian scientists are offering “support and solidarity amid mounting fears that Donald Trump’s presidency will seek to suppress climate science.”

In Canada, libraries of science were closed, programs felt saw significant cutbacks, and federal scientists were banned from speaking to the media. Robert MacDonald, who worked with the federal government said, “It was a dramatic departure from past practices.”

Canadian fusion 2030?(!)
Business Vancouver says that universities across British Columbia are keen on the push for one company to be producing fusion energy, even as early as the year 2030. A group of Canadian universities and institutes, including the Universities of Alberta and Saskatchewan, is rallying around Burnaby’s General Fusion.

The goal is to establish a program for national fusion power similar to that established in 1952 around nuclear energy as a power source. Matthew Dalzell, Partnerships manager at the Fedoruk Centre (part of the group), said it’s “an indigenous technology and potentially they [General Fusion] are considered to be one of the leaders in this field.”

“So what can we do to help build a strategy that would advance fusion?” Dalzell asked. The group is assisting with the “Fusion 2030 strategy.” The strategy calls for $125 million in federal funding over five years to rebuild academic capacity in plasma physics and related fields.

Microplastics found in supermarket fish and shellfish
CBC says, microplastics, or very small plastics, “are making their way into fish and shellfish found at the supermarket, a new study has shown.” One study from a UN agency, International maritime Organization, the affect on humans is unknown at this time.

The microplastics enter the environment through a variety of means, though. They can come from synthetic fabrics from clothing, tire bits, and other products and materials that are plastic or synthetic-based.

Chelsea Rochman, Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto and Co-Editor of the report, said, “It has infiltrated every level of the food chain in marine environments ? and so now we’re seeing it come back to us on our dinner plates.”