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Tag archives for Canada

Coral Bleaching Linked to Climate Change, Other Factors

The Great Barrier Reef, which last year narrowly avoided being put on the World Heritage endangered list, is experiencing its worst bleaching in recorded history. According to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, overall mortality of the reef is 22 percent, but along Lizard Island, off far north Queensland, it’s 93 percent. Coral bleaching is also occurring along…

Why Protecting Canada’s Boreal Forest is This Century’s Great Conservation Idea

A hundred years ago, the Migratory Bird Treaty helped shape North America’s conservation ethic. Today, new initiatives in Canada offer hope for a sound environmental future. Historians would not consider 1916 a good year for the planet. The largest war the world had ever seen was raging in Europe, with millions of people killed and…

A Pacific salmon hub is under threat

The Skeena River snakes out of fir-lined fjords on the misty northern coast of British Columbia, and washes over a thousand-acre sandbar. Flora Bank is a biological bottleneck over which millions of finger-length young salmon enter the sea each spring. Scientist Allen Gottesfeld calls Flora Bank the “Grand Central Station” for the watershed. All streams…

Why I Didn’t Want to Study the Norse World—But I’m Very Glad I Did

Last June, I was lucky enough to be part of a team that located a potential Norse site in eastern Canada, several hundred miles south of where experts expected one to be. This site, Point Rosee, has gone viral and is featured in a two-hour Nova special, Vikings Unearthed (watch it now). So I need…

Climate-Change-Related Precipitation Extremes Hard to Predict

Scientists have warned that severe drought and precipitation are among the risks of greenhouse-gas-induced climate change, but a study published in the journal Nature finds that extremely warm temperatures do not always translate into record wet and dry extremes. Highlighting the complexities in predicting the effects of planetary warming on precipitation, lead author Fredrik Ljungqvist…

U.S., Canada Announce Methane Reduction Plan

In a move that could help the United States and Canada meet pledges they made at last year’s United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a plan to cut oil and gas industry methane emissions 40–45 percent, compared to 2012 levels, by 2025. In Canada,…

Shadow Cat: Canada Lynx Silently Cross U.S. State, National Borders

The forest has eyes. And somewhere in the shadows of a winter dusk that falls across towns in northern New England, they’re watching. The deep green eyes of the Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) have the advantage in the region’s dark spruce-fir, or boreal, forest. They see without being seen. The better to go walkabout in new…

Best Job Ever: Filming a Wild Beluga Whale Party by Drone

Thousands of beluga whales congregate in Canada’s Cunningham Inlet each summer for what National Geographic Young Explorer and nature photographer Nansen Weber calls “a big beluga party.” Using a drone, Weber captures the breathtaking view from above.

15-year-old Jonah Bryson Asks For Your Help

  By Jonah Bryson   Imagine a place, deep in the Canadian forests of Ontario, where the environment remains relatively untouched by humans, where the multi-coloured autumn trees sway in the wind and where children play in the water from dusk to dawn. Imagine a place where the water flows spectacularly down a small waterfall as…

Arctic Diplomacy requires Convergence of Military and Scientific Interests

Scientists and the military have a long history of engagement but largely in a client-donor relationship. Yet, global environmental change is providing another opportunity for more “natural” convergent cooperation that was manifest at an unusual meeting of academia and the military held at the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources (RSENR) at the University…

Part 1: On the Front Lines in Wet’suwet’en Territory

After a whirlwind trip to New York and Washington D.C. last month to meet the 2015-16 Fulbright-National Geographic Fellows (an impressive group) and publicly present our projects at National Geographic headquarters, I am back in Canada for two more months of production. Since my last post (so long ago!), I’ve been traveling back and forth…

SCOTUS Overturns Mercury Rule

The Supreme Court, in a 5–4 decision, ruled that the Clean Air Act required the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to consider the costs of its Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (MATS) rule when determining whether it was “appropriate and necessary” to regulate mercury emissions from the power sector. The MATS rule requires coal-burning power…

Pope Calls for Sweeping Changes to Address Climate Change

Pope Francis’s highly anticipated encyclical on the environment, which may play a key role in the United Nations climate change conference in Paris later this year, was released today. Among its key focuses: climate change is real, it is getting worse and humans are a major cause. “Each year sees the disappearance of thousands of…

High-Tech Mapping Sheds New Light on the Atlantic Seafloor

The ancient Irish may have done it. The Vikings certainly did. And now a team of scientists is crossing the Atlantic by ship, preparing to make the most complete map ever of its floor.

Swimming Among Pilot Whales in the Far North

We are not yet in Greenland, nor are we near Canada. We’re right smack dab in the middle of Davis Strait. The water is nearly 9,000 feet deep and I’m suited up like an astronaut.