Forestry field school gets a makeover for a growing industry

Vital learning experience – a rite of passage for the past 50 years – reimagined for safety and sustainability

Forestry field school gets a makeover for a growing industryBy the time Ben Strelkov started high school, the self-described “city kid” assumed that once he was in the workforce, he’d be confined to an office, doing basically the same thing every workday. His summer job following Grade 10 shattered the illusion. “I spent the whole time in northern Alberta – building trails, helping communities…

Firefighters who fought Fort McMurray wildfire suffer persistent lung damage

With the risk of asthma more than doubling

Firefighters who fought Fort McMurray wildfire suffer persistent lung damageFirefighters at the centre of the battle against the massive Fort McMurray wildfire in 2016 have persistent lung damage, according to new findings published by a University of Alberta occupational health research team. “Those who were dealing with burning organic matter were exposed to a barrage of small particles in the smoke, and the ones with the…

Augustana grad eager to share her love of the outdoors with others

Everyone should have the chance to connect with nature and understand its importance to our lives, Kate Corrigan believes

Augustana grad eager to share her love of the outdoors with othersKate Corrigan still has blister scars from backpacking up to the base of Mount Robson during a high school field trip, but it was that first trek that sparked a passion for the great outdoors. “For me, the outdoors is a place to disconnect, to reconnect. You’re away from the stress of work, school, social…

New research chair will look into the future of forests

The work of the $4-million endowed position will help inform forest companies as they sustainably manage land for timber and biodiversity

New research chair will look into the future of forestsRobert Froese can tell you the exact moment he knew forestry would be his lifelong career. He was an undergraduate student at the University of British Columbia, standing in the forest with his classmates. “My professor went crashing into the woods … and he came back with a big Douglas-fir branch,” said Froese. “It was rainy…

Regulatory quicksand holds back clean tech in Alberta

Sitting on an enormous economic opportunity that could address current financial and environmental issues and help diversify the economy

Regulatory quicksand holds back clean tech in AlbertaWith Alberta’s economy still sputtering and not expected to rebound until 2023, the knowledge that we are sitting on an enormous economic opportunity is music to the ears of most Albertans. The fact that this opportunity not only addresses current financial and environmental issues but also helps diversify the energy sector is a veritable symphony.…

Researchers brewing up better ways to turn plant waste into ethanol

Researchers brewing up better ways to turn plant waste into ethanolUniversity of Alberta research is brewing up better ways to help ethanol producers make the most of plant waste they use to make their fuel. A process developed by researcher David Bressler’s lab in the Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences makes it possible to break down stubborn plant tissues to make clean-burning ethanol, and also creates a…

Canada’s gas flaring practices among the best in the world

In 2019, Canada recorded a 49% reduction in flaring from just five years earlier. And Canada is responsible for just 0.7% of worldwide

Canada’s gas flaring practices among the best in the worldBy Mark Milke and Ven Venkatachalam Canadian Energy Centre If you’ve spent time in Western Canada near an oil or gas well or refinery, you might have noticed a smokestack-like pipe with a flame at the top. Or you might have seen such a flame in pictures of refineries in Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Texas, or…

Study hopes to find ways to contain spread of mountain pine beetles

Mountain pine beetles can be an important contributor to forest health, but ...

Study hopes to find ways to contain spread of mountain pine beetlesIn a new study aimed at assisting efforts to contain the destructive spread of mountain pine beetles, University of Alberta biologists examined their flight techniques and used genetic information to track how they are spreading through the province. “One of the reasons these beetles have become such a problem is because of the difficulty in…

Which sector spends the most on the environment? Oil and gas

Between 2006 and 2018 the oil and gas sector spent $28.1 billion on environmental protection; ALL other industries combined spent $39.6 billion

Which sector spends the most on the environment? Oil and gasBy Mark Milke and Ven Venkatachalam Canadian Energy Centre As two people not born in Alberta but who live here now – one of us came from British Columbia and the other from India – we’re constantly amazed at the misinformation about the province and one of Canada’s biggest economic contributors: the oil and gas…

Wildfires, logging affect key fungi in pine forests: studies

Disturbances by humans or nature change the balance of fungi in soil, potentially making it harder for seedlings to regenerate

Wildfires, logging affect key fungi in pine forests: studiesDisturbances can hit Alberta’s lodgepole pine forests hard – including life under the soil, new University of Alberta research shows. Fungal communities that nourish pine tree roots are being altered by both human-made and natural disturbances, which can stress forests and make it tougher for pine seedlings to regenerate, said Jean Rodriguez Ramos, a PhD…
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