September 29 to October 1, 2021

The Fairmont Banff Springs

Banff, Alberta

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WEDNESDAY, September 29

  • 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

    PLENARY SESSION: Off with Their Heads - Regulatory Update

    2020/21 have seen updates in Alberta to regulatory waste issues, at both provincial and national levels. This session will tackle some of these pending updates.

    • Alberta Environment and Parks – EPR Comes to Alberta
    • New Alberta Compost Code of Practice
    • Tracey Spack (Environment and Climate Change Canada) – CEPA, Plastics and Single Use Items

  • 10:30 am - 2:30 pm

    Exhibit Set-up

  • 11:00 am - 3:00 pm

    Down the Rabbit Hole Golf Tournament

    9-Hole Tunnel Course – The Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course

    More details at:

    Sponsored by GFL Environmental Ltd.

  • 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm


    Tour 1: A Walk Through the Garden – Banff Springs Environmental Programs Tour
    Tour 2: Curiouser and Curiouser – Banff Reuse Centre, Biomass Project and Library of Things

  • 2:30 pm - 3:00 pm

    Exhibit Viewing & Refreshments

  • 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

    CONCURRENT SESSION: Clean-Up After the Tea Party

    With approximately 2.2 million tonnes of organic waste sent to Canadian landfills each year (Love Food Hate Waste), food waste reduction and alternative management options are high priorities for municipalities and the public. This session will explore strategies from leaders in the field including food rescue, reduction and composting projects.

    • Heather Ramshaw and Mike Dorion (Highfield Farm) – Urban Farming
    • Sarah Bruinsma & Brianne Fredell (High River Food Rescue)
    • Barbara Swartzentruber (City of Guelph) – Food Circular Economy

  • 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm

    CONCURRENT SESSION: Sense and Nonsense - Defining Waste Reduction

    As we advance policies and implement the circular economy, we need to critically examine the definition of recycling. For many years, recycling has elicited thoughts of positive environmental outcomes and warm fuzzy feelings for those who participate in programs in their community. With more recent challenges to accessing international markets and changes to policies on transboundary shipping, we have become aware of the challenges of recycling and the need to improve our existing systems. What does it really mean to recycle, what are the processes and systems that enable it, and how do we design systems for the best possible outcomes?

    • Usman Valiante (Cardwell Grove Inc.) – CSA Definition of Recycling
    • Michael Cant (GHD) / Susan Thoman (Compost Manufacturing Alliance) – Compostable plastics in the real world environment


  • 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

    We're All Mad Here - RCA AGM

  • 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

    Finding the Jabberwocky - Banff Zero Waste Trail Scavenger Hunt

    Participants will team up for a fun scavenger hunt that will feature Banff’s Trailblazers – businesses that are leading the way on zero waste initiatives.

  • 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

    Meeting Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum - Drop-in Reception Networking

THURSDAY, September 30

  • 7:45 am - 8:30 am

    Exhibit Viewing Over Breakfast

  • 8:30 am - 8:45 am

    Welcome to Wonderland - Conference Opening and Welcome

    Karen Sorenson (Mayor of Town of Banff)

  • 8:45 am - 10:30 am

    PLENARY SESSION: From a Pawn to a Queen - Innovation

    Despite living with the challenges of a climate crisis and global pandemic, groups and individuals are rising above adversity with new and innovative ways to adapt and evolve. Join us as we feature innovative organizations and individuals that are challenging the status quo.

    • Kirk Zembal (Blindman Brewing)
    • Sarah Janzen (Blenderz)
    • Corey Saban (Re-Waste)
    • Lauren Nottebrock (Red Leaf Pulp) – Wheat Straw Pulp Mill
    • Anne Auriat (Edson & District Recycling Society) – Recycling Depot provides emergency shelter

  • 10:30 am - 11:15 am

    Exhibit Viewing & Refreshments

  • 11:15 am - 12:15 pm

    KEYNOTE: The Cheshire Cat’s Perspective - Peter von Tiesenhausen

    Peter von Tiesenhausen is a multidisciplinary artist based in Demmitt, Alberta. Over the course of his more than thirty years as a full-time artist, his practice has continuously eluded categorization.

    von Tiesenhausen’s work contends with diverse matters including time, the spirit, birth and death, nature and artifice, decay and regrowth, and the environment. His methodology is characterized by an intent pursuit of ecological sustainability, and an attempt to understand time and substance. Though often large in scale and sometimes imposing in form, von Tiesenhausen’s artworks yield varied meanings, and undermine the singularity often associated with interpretations of the monolithic.

    Site-specificity and site-responsivity play integral parts in the production of meaning in von Tiesenhausen’s practice; the materials he employs often engineer decay rather than impose permanence, transforming over time and in conversation with their environment. von Tiesenhausen’s subtle interventions on the land where he lives formed the basis for his 1996 copyright claim over that land, a claim which has since protected it from resource exploration by extractive industries and forced pipeline developers to do expensive rerouting around it.

    From 2007 to 2011, von Tiesenhausen spearheaded the construction of a LEED platinum-equivalent timber frame community centre in Demmitt, Alberta, which now hosts community and performing arts events. This work within his community reflects an interest in unpretentious dialogue about art in general, and a respect for the manifold experiences and perspectives of his audience.

    von Tiesenhausen has presented numerous lectures on his work and ideas in museums, universities, and public institutions throughout Canada, as well as in the United States, Mexico, and Europe. He has had over fifty-two solo exhibitions and has participated in over sixty-five group exhibitions. von Tiesenhausen was the 2015 recipient of the prestigious Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Distinguished Artists Award.


  • 12:15 pm - 1:30 pm


  • 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

    CONCURRENT SESSION: Understanding Wonderland’s Etiquette - Reusables

    Hear first-hand how communities and businesses are tackling the growing issue of single-use packaging with reusable solutions. What barriers have they faced and where do they see opportunities to advance their reuse programs?

    • Clarissa Morawski (ReLoop Platform) – Reusable vs Single Use Packaging
    • Megan Takeda-Tully (Suppli)
    • TBA – Banff Isn’t Disposable

  • 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

    CONCURRENT SESSION: Growing Up in a New World - Making the Built Environment Circular

    There are many opportunities to advance a circular economy in the construction and demolition sector through reuse, recycling and deconstruction. Speakers at this session will highlight specific projects including a zero-waste building project in Calgary and policies and practices to help the sector advance circularity.

    • Tamara Streefland (Metabolic) – Urban Mining in the Built Environment
    • Adam Corneil (Unbuilders Deconstruction) – Deconstructing the Demolition Industry
    • Willie Tran (Eton West) – Zero Waste OfficeSpace


  • 3:00 pm - 3:30 pm

    Exhibit Viewing & Refreshments

  • 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

    PLENARY SESSION: Unpredictable Chaos - Building a Plastics Circular Economy

    Plastics continue to be front and center on the policy agendas of international, federal and provincial governments. This session highlights the work of organizations who are advancing plastics circularity to reduce pollution and unnecessary plastics generation, while creating better management practices and innovative approaches to enhanced reuse and recycling.

    Moderator: Elena Mantagaris (CIAC)

    • Chelsea Rochman (University of Toronto) – The Story of Microplastic Pollution: from the distant ocean gyres to the global policy stage
    • Anna Rajkovic (Nova Chemicals)
    • Brooke Donnelly (Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation) – Our Packaging Future
    • Tim Buwalda (Circular Matters) – Chemical Recycling

  • 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

    Mad Hatter Tea Party

    Dance Party featuring Bradley James Entertainment

FRIDAY, October 1

  • 8:00 am - 9:00 am

    Exhibit Viewing & Breakfast

  • 9:00 am - 10:30 am

    PLENARY SESSION: Navigating in a Big New Circular World

    As we build circular systems in Canada, it’s critical that we reflect and learn from leaders advancing the circular economy around the world.

    • Clarissa Morawski (Reloop Platform) – European Commission Circular Economy Action Plan
    • Carlos Fiorentino (U of A) – Interpreting the pandemic (and its consequences) from a biocentered approach
    • National Zero Waste Council – Environmental and Economic Benefits of Waste Prevention

  • 10:30 am - 11:00 am

    Exhibit Viewing & Refreshments

  • 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

    PLENARY SESSION: Across Wonderland in 90 Minutes

    Communities across Canada are increasingly implementing initiatives with the potential to build Circular Economy. This session will explore some of these progressive approaches.

    • Maud Fillion and Sylvain Boissonnier (City of Montréal) – Montréal’s Zero Waste Plan
    • City of Edmonton


  • 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

    Conference Closing & Working Lunch