GFWC Publications

Atlas of Key Ecological Areas Within Canada’s Intact Forest Landscapes

(2010-12-17) Global Forest Watch Canada has created a dataset of key ecological areas by applying a ranking system to a variety of biotic and abiotic datasets of the terrestrial and aquatic environments within Canada’s intact forest landscapes. The results are an interesting illustration of a combined analytical and mapping approach to ecological values.

 

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Large Dams and Reservoirs of Canada: Dataset Bulletin

(2010-12-17) This bulletin describes the dataset of large dams and reservoirs of Canada, which is part of a larger project within the umbrella of a multi-year GFWC project titled Energy Developments, Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Forest Conservation in Canada. Reservoirs and their associated dams were created based on the dams listed in the Atlas of Canada, 1,000,000 National Frameworks Data, Hydrology – Dams spatial dataset. Information on hydropower facilities were also made available for those reservoirs contributing to hydropower generation. The dataset is also relevant to the "Hydropower Developments in Canada" reports published in January 2012.

 

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Industrial-caused Changes to Canada’s Forest Frontier: 1990–2001

(2010-12-10) Global Forest Watch Canada compiles and summarizes several change analysis projects, which examine an average 11-year period (1990–2001). These projects combine to cover 2.9 million square kilometres throughout Canada’s forest landscapes. The maps and data GFWC are releasing highlight that although Canada contains globally significant intact boreal and temperate forest landscapes, the forest frontier is undergoing rapid and recent massive human-caused transformations. These transformations are mainly a result of industrial activities. Thus, Canada has both opportunities and challenges in terms of sustainably managing its remaining forest resource for a range of resource consumption and ecological values.

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Nova Scotia’s Intact Forest Landscapes: Opportunities for Conservation Planning

(2010-11-26) This study mapped and analyzed Intact Forest Landscapes of Nova Scotia greater than 500 ha and highlighted opportunities that exist for conservation planning. Significant areas of Intact Forest Landscapes in Nova Scotia remain. The areas with the largest loss of Intact Forest Landscape blocks greater than 1,000 ha are Shelburne and Halifax counties. The vast majority of Intact Forest Landscape blocks larger than 500 ha remain on crown land.

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Atlas of Canada’s Intact Forest Landscapes

(2010-09-13) This Global Forest Watch Canada study presents the most detailed national assessment ever undertaken, looking at a wider range of human disturbances and identifying intact forest landscapes using medium-resolution satellite imagery as well as some medium-resolution Landsat data and ground and aerial photography verification. An intact forest landscape as a contiguous mosaic of natural ecosystems in a forest ecozone, essentially undisturbed by human influence, including both treed and naturally treeless area.
 

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Cumulative Access in Canada's Forest Ecozones (bulletin)

(2010-09-13) This Global Forest Watch Canada study has analyzed the extent to which Canada's forest ecozones have been impacted by significant human activities. GFWC's cumulative access layer was compiled by analyzing Landsat (TM and ETM) satellite images for the period 1988 to 2006. All visible infrastructure and other human activities on the images were mapped and buffered by 500 metres. It is accompanied by a geospatial dataset (see link under "Related Stories" below). 

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Summary of Global Forest Watch Canada's Anthropogenic Change Projects: 2006–2010

(2010-09-13) This report summarizes Global Forest Watch Canada’s anthropogenic change work since 2006. These studies were conducted across Canada and resulted in a series of reports for Québec, Ontario, Saskatchewan/Manitoba, Alberta, British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Northwest Territories. The reports focused on major ecosystem types, such as terrestrial ecozones, watersheds, inland temperate rainforests, Rocky Mountain Foothills, and Greenbelt surrounding Toronto.

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Comprehensive conservation planning in Canadian boreal regions

(2010-05-10) Published in the scientific journal Biological Conservation (authors: DW Schindler and PG Lee). In a water-scarce world, there is increasing pressure to divert and exploit boreal freshwaters, and devising conservation plans to protect boreal freshwaters and their catchments is urgent. We propose a catchment-based approach that includes water and chemical mass-balances as a sensitive means of detecting early degradation of many ecosystem services in both catchments and freshwaters.

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Does the Alberta Tar Sands Industry Pollute? The Scientific Evidence

(2009-10-22) This research paper determines whether physical and ecological changes that result from tar sands industrial activities are detectable. The findings conclude that: present levels of some contaminants pose an ecosystem or human health risk, the effects of which deserve immediate and systematic study; projected tripling of tar sands activities over the next decade may result in unacceptably large and unforeseen impacts to biodiversity, ecosystem function, and public health, and; the attention of the world's scientific community is urgently needed. As published in The Open Conservation Biology Journal, 2009, 3, 65-81.

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Bitumen and Biocarbon: Land Use Conversions and Loss of Biological Carbon Due to Bitumen Operations in the Boreal Forests of Alberta, Canada

(2009-09-27) A report that provides estimates of land use changes, biological carbon content and consequent potential greenhouse emissions due to existing and future surface mining and in situ extraction of bitumen in Alberta, Canada. The paper reveals that significant amounts of greenhouse gases are emitted through the disturbance and/or removal of biocarbon (trees, shrubs, peats), which overlay Alberta's oil sands. These emissions have not previously been measured nor reported by governments and industry.

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