Browse "Natural resources"

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Not for Saps: Tree Planting in Alberta

Over a century’s worth of shifting environmental policy means that today, maintaining Canada’s forests is as important as cutting them down. Tree planting is an essential part of this maintenance, and each year thousands of young Canadians trek through rough conditions and remote areas to replant thousands of trees.

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Peat

Peat, living and partially decomposed organic matter, consists principally of decayed brown mosses, Sphagnum plants, sedges and other semiaquatic plant remains.

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Reforestation

Many people believe a new sapling must be planted to replace every tree that is harvested. In fact, the FOREST regenerates naturally. After logging, young shoots grow and develop quickly because they have more room and good exposure to sunlight.

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Resource Towns

Resource towns, or "new towns," are the small, isolated communities built around resource-based industries and transportation, such as mining towns, mill towns, railway towns and fishing villages. Examples include: Fort McMurray, Alberta (oil); Grand Falls-Windsor, Newfoundland (pulp and paper); Glace Bay, Nova Scotia (coal); Black's Harbour, New Brunswick (fish packing); Murdochville, Québec (copper); Elliot Lake, Ontario (uranium); Snow Lake, Manitoba (copper, zinc); and Kitimat, British Columbia (aluminum). Resource development has long been recognized as a significant factor in shaping patterns of Canadian development. It has been argued that all Canadian urban growth ultimately depends on the production of staple products. Resource towns have been important agencies in this process of staple exploitation. Because of their dependence on single industries, the economies of resource towns are often unstable and precarious.

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Resource Use

Since prehistoric times, the inhabitants of what is now Canada used vegetation and animals for food, clothing and shelter. They fashioned implements and ornaments from MINERALS and, after the arrival of Europeans, used furs for trading.

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Scotian Shelf

Scotian Shelf, a 700 km section of the Continental Shelf off Nova Scotia. Bounded by the Laurentian Channel on the NE, and Northeast Channel and the Gulf of Maine on the SW, it varies in width from 120 to 240 km; the average depth is 90 m.

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Silviculture

Silviculture is the branch of FORESTRY that deals with establishing, caring for and reproducing stands of trees for a variety of forest uses including wildlife habitat, timber production and outdoor recreation.

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Soil

Soil is the thin, fragile surface layer of Earth. It is a dynamic, loose and porous body of variable thickness (between a few centimetres and a few metres). Soil is formed by continuous transformations of rock or deposit through physical, chemical and biological processes. It is one of the two main components of Earth — the other being oceans — in which life is particularly active. Soil is the source and site of many human activities, and human life greatly depends on it. In Canada, agricultural, environmental and natural-resource scientists are at the forefront of research on soil.

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Soil Classification

Classification involves arranging individual units with similar characteristics into groups. Soils do not occur as discrete entities; thus the unit of measurement for soil is not obvious.

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Soil Conservation

Soil conservation is a combination of all methods of management and land use that safeguard the soil against depletion or deterioration by natural or human-induced factors.

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Soil Science

Soil science is the science that deals with soils as a natural resource. Studies focus on soil formation, classification and mapping, and the physical, chemical and biological properties and fertility of soils as such and in relation to their management for crop production.

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Solar Energy

Solar Energy is electromagnetic radiation (including infrared, visible and ultraviolet light) released by thermonuclear reactions in the core of the sun.

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Sustainable Development

The WCED was formed to consider the key issues related to environment and development, and to provide feasible and innovative ideas to deal with them. Sustainable development was proposed to meet this challenge.

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Tidal Energy

Tidal energy is a largely untapped, renewable energy source based largely on lunar gravitation. While the potential of tidal hydroelectricity has long been recognized, compared to river dams, tidal power projects are expensive because massive structures must be built in difficult saltwater environments.

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Zinc

Zinc (Zn) is a bluish-white metal of low to intermediate hardness that melts at 419°C and is estimated to comprise about 0.013% of the earth's crust. Zinc is an essential element for human health; over 200 enzymes in the body require zinc for proper functioning.