Headlines: Aug. 16, 2023

· The Pulse
  • The Edmonton Elks announced they have mutually agreed to part ways with president and CEO Victor Cui, effective immediately. "This was a culmination of ongoing discussions between the board and Victor, as well as the board internally about the future of the club," said Tom Richards, chair of the EE Football Club board of directors. The decision comes as the team tries to improve its performance and break a 22-game home losing streak, the longest in North American professional sports history. The team said it will name an interim president and CEO within two to three weeks, with a permanent replacement expected by the end of the year.
  • Some families could receive an additional $650 by the end of 2023 as part of the federal dental care benefit, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh announced during a news conference in Edmonton. Singh highlighted his party's role in securing the program for Canadians and noted that more than 10,000 children and families in Edmonton have already received their first $650 benefit. The program provides cash payments to families with less than $90,000 in earnings and no private insurance. Singh said it will expand to include children under 18, people with disabilities, and qualifying seniors by the end of the year.
  • The Alberta government announced it will invest $20 million over five years in the Innovation Catalyst Grant to support tech startups and create job opportunities in the province. The grant in intended to help science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) PhD and masters graduates start their own companies. The program, administered by the University of Alberta, University of Calgary, and University of Lethbridge, offers up to $250,000 over two years to successful applicants, providing mentorship and access to university labs. The deadline to apply for this year's intake is Sept. 15.
  • The mayor of Enterprise in the Northwest Territories said about 90% of the community has been lost to wildfires raging in the area. "I think there's seven or eight houses left and three or four businesses," Michael St Amour said. The Northwest Territories government declared a Territorial State of Emergency on Aug. 15 as 236 fires burned in the region, including one threatening Yellowknife. More than 20,000 square kilometres have already burned, and several highways are closed because of fires, prompting the Canadian Forces to fly evacuees out on Hercules aircraft. Evacuation orders have been issued for Hay River, Kátł'odeeche First Nation, Fort Smith, Enterprise, and Jean Marie River. Evacuees of the South Slave region were asked to register at the reception centre at St. Albert's Servus Place.
  • Heidelberg Materials, a multinational cement company with a plant in Edmonton, launched a carbon capture system on Aug. 15 in an effort to become carbon-neutral. The pilot system pulls 300 kilograms of carbon each day from its production facility in the city's northwest. The company hopes to launch a full-scale standalone carbon capture and storage facility by 2026 at an estimated cost of $1.4 billion. "There is no other facility in the world that is doing full-scale carbon capture on a cement plant," said project director Corwyn Bruce.