Infrastructure minister heads to Las Vegas

Infrastructure Minister Wally Schumann is in Las Vegas, Nevada for JCK, a jewelry convention at the Sands Expo and Convention Center.

Billing itself as “North America’s most iconic jewelry buying experience,” the event takes place from May 30 to June 3 and features suppliers and products from around the world.

The expo is funded by a number of organizations including The Diamond Empowerment Fund, from which Bob McLeod accepted a ‘Diamonds Do Good Award’ on behalf of the territory’s sustainable diamond industry last year.

Wally Schumann, minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment and Minister of Infrastructure, left, and NWT Premier Bob McLeod. NNSL photo

A media request was submitted to the GNWT Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs about the cost and purpose of this year’s trip but Yellowknifer had not yet received a response as of Friday morning. 

An earlier version of this story stated the Premier and the Infrastructure Minister were both attending the event in Las Vegas. NNSL received an email from the GNWT press secretary on May 27 stating “Bob McLeod and Wally Schumann are attending JCK from May 30 to June 3 in Las Vegas, Nevada.”

While both were scheduled to attend the expo, only Minister Schumann ended up going.

“Due to other commitments the Premier opted out of attending JCK, and only Minister Schumann is attending,” stated Trista Haugland, media and communications coordinator with the Department of Executive and Indigenous Affairs, in a follow-up email to NNSL.

Territory gets federal support for forest monitoring

The GNWT has signed a memorandum of understanding with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) to measure National Forest Industry (NFI) ground plots in the territory.

The new agreement will help the NWT monitor forests and climate change.

NRCan has committed to providing up to $951,700 over three years to complete the measurement of 62 ground plots in the NWT. The plots are randomly located in forests on a 20-km sampling grid of the Taiga Plains ecozone.

The plots are located in one of the most northerly forested spots in the country. The research will focus on the state of Canada’s forests and will inform decisions about forestry and climate change. The goal is to study the plots every ten years to gather data on how forests are changing over time.

GNWT launches Carrot Rewards app

On Wednesday, the GNWT departments of Health and Social Services and Municipal and Community Affairs launched the Carrot Rewards mobile app – one of the first mobile apps officially endorsed by the territorial government.

The wellness app has a built-in pedometer and rewards residents for physical activity and health awareness. The GNWT helped develop NWT-specific health promotions, quizzes and challenges for the app. When territorial residents complete quizzes and challenges, they can earn loyalty points from partners like Petro Points, RBC Rewards and Canadian North.

The points can be exchanged for rewards like air miles, fuel discounts, or gift cards to stores like the Stanton Chain of Grocers in the Beaufort Delta. Through the platform, the GNWT hopes to encourage Northerners to make healthy decisions.

The free mobile app is available in English and French and can be downloaded on any Android or iOS device.

Meaghan Richens

Meaghan Richens is from Ottawa, Ont., and grew up in Perth. She moved to Yellowknife in May 2018 after completing her bachelor’s degree in journalism at Carleton University. She writes about politics,...

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