Blog

Welcome to the blog! In this space you will find updates about our current projects and activities as well as the processes and tools we use to do our work. Unlike our featured articles and regularly available web content, this blog is envisioned as a dynamic, informal space that will let us connect with our visitors.

Every Bead Counts

The Chinese abacus is called “suanpan”, which means “calculating deck”. It is made of columns of beads on bamboo rods, separated with a beam into upper deck and lower deck.  Each bead on upper deck counts as five and the bead on lower deck counts as one.  The first column on the right represent one […]

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Did you know….

…these five interesting facts about Limber Pine (Pinus flexilis)? They have needles that come out in bunches of five. They tend to be stumpy and twisted, due to their ability to withstand considerable bending. As a result, they often do well in avalanche paths. Their flexibility is the reason for their name –  Pinus flexilis. […]

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Did you know….

..that the word benthic means ‘bottom-dwelling’ and invertebrate means ‘without a backbone’?  So the next time you think of someone as spineless or bottom-dwelling, remember that the benthic invertebrate living in Alberta’s water bodies are an important part of the ecosystem and act as key indicators of pollution and stress.  These little critters are incredibly […]

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Monitoring Air Quality During Forest Fires

Where there is fire, there is smoke. After an abnormally dry spring, Alberta (and western Canada) is experiencing one of the worst forest fire seasons in a decade. With 1,2961 fires and counting so far this year, people are worried about the quality of the air in their communities. In response to requests from communities, the […]

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Did you know…

…Undaunted by our spring snowstorms, ferruginous hawks are returning from their winter homes to Alberta. Two sightings have been reported near Medicine Hat in the past couple of weeks. For more information about monitoring species at risk in Alberta, check out our latest updates to the AEMERIS map and data library.

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Better Environment Management Through Monitoring: The Story of the Yellow Rail in the Lower Athabasca

“The approval holder shall provide a plan or participate in the development of a plan for the monitoring and mitigation of the Yellow Rail (Coturnicops noveboracensis) by [given date] to the satisfaction of the Director…” – Approval condition for oil sands mine project The Yellow Rail is a secretive, nocturnal wetland bird. It’s currently listed […]

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The Future of Environmental Monitoring

Through investments by governments and private sector members into research and development, new technologies such as remote sensing, new DNA technologies, big data, robotics, and social networking, are drastically changing how the environment is monitored. As new technologies arise, tools adopted in the environmental monitoring system will share some common “technological DNA” with other surveillance […]

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Did you know…

… the Environmental Monitoring and Science Division (formerly AEMERA), in partnership with the Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute (ABMI) and the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC), has compiled lists of the species at risk in the first region of Alberta’s seven Land Use Planning regions? The following lists for 2014 in the oil […]

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