We monitor the state of Canada’s forests to provide quality information on development activity and environmental impacts.
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(2017-02-21) GFWC has recently completed updating our industrial concessions datasets, current to the end of 2016. Industrial concessions are agreements between companies and governments that allow for the exploration and/or exploitation of renewable and non-renewable natural resources and as such are an important indicator of the present geographic extent of industrial interest and potential resource development on the Canadian landscape. Our current datasets include: forestry concessions, mineral concessions, and petroleum/natural gas concessions. Note: GFWC is in the process of preparing an open data assessment on these latest geospatial datasets that will be sent out for review and published when finalized.
(2016-10-20) Mapping analyses from satellite images shows that the Broadback River watershed, and the boreal forest to the south and east of it, experienced a significant expansion of human development between 1980 and 2015. The analyses, conducted by Global Forest Watch Canada (GFWC), examined the length of linear and area-based disturbances in the Broadback River watershed.
(2016-10-20) These datasets show the extent of anthropogenic disturbances mapped by GFWC in the Broadback River Watershed region based on Landsat imagery from 1980 to 2015. Three datasets are available for download: (1) linear disturbances; (2) polygonal disturbances; and (3) a dataset in which the linear and polygonal disturbance datasets were buffered by 500m to account for an ecological footprint and combined. The disturbance data in all three datasets is separated into 5-year time periods, from 1980 to 2015.
(2016-10-20) This bulletin presents the results of time series analyses of anthropogenic industrial disturbance in the Broadback River watershed in Quebec, as well as an area to the south and east. The results reveal a steady increase in both linear and area-based disturbances. Logging and associated road development are the most significant contributors to the cumulative growth of human impacts; however, there are still opportunities to ensure that further development is minimized in the watershed.
(2015-12-15) During the summer of 2015, there were 716 forest fires in Saskatchewan, compared to a 10 year average of 363 (according to the Canadian Wildland Fire Information System). These fires burned 1.755 million hectares, compared to a 10 year average of 471,000 hectares.
(2014-12-11) Woodland caribou are in trouble throughout their range in Canada. “Thanks to new high-resolution global satellite data developed by Dr. Matthew Hansen at the University of Maryland, we can systematically and accurately determine the rate of forest change across all the range of Canada’s woodland caribou and pinpoint exactly where in the boreal forest these animals are most under threat.”
(2014-12-11) Woodland caribou numbers are dropping because of habitat loss and high levels of predation by wolves, the result of vast changes in their herd ranges from a variety of development pressures. Now, thanks to a new study, we can for the first time systematically and accurately determine the rate of landscape change across all the range of woodland caribou and pin point where in the boreal forest these animals are most under threat. Our analysis clearly indicates the threat to boreal caribou is highest in Alberta.
(2014-09-08) Canoeing almost 800 km through the heart of Canada’s pristine boreal forest is a jaw-dropping, grueling, exhilarating adventure. For me, now into my 60s, it was “epic” to go for almost four weeks this past summer from Wollaston Lake in northeastern Saskatchewan through a series of lakes and 43 portages into northwestern Manitoba, and back.
(2014-09-03) Global Forest Watch Canada conducted a made-in-Alberta approach to the mapping and analysis of the conservation values of the boreal region of northern Alberta, an area comprising more than 2/3 of Alberta. We examined natural landscape features, wildlife and human disturbances and ranked the condition, diversity, ecological function and special features of the entire study area.
(2014-07-24) Global Forest Watch Canada conducted a field validation exercise to test the accuracy of the “forest gain” component of the new global dataset of forest change (High-Resolution Global Maps of 21st-Century Forest Cover Change; see sciencemag.org) for two sites in a forested region of southwestern Alberta, Canada, known regionally as the Eastern Slopes. Our study warrants a close consideration of the dataset's use in the Canadian context.