2023 Current Issue
Hello 2023 Envirothon students!
Below you will find resources to help you study and prepare for the 2023 Alberta Envirothon:
All information with the blue background has been made by professionals throughout Alberta to help prepare you for the Current Issue exam
Information with the green background is from the NCF-Envirothon (the international competition). This includes key topics that will be tested in the exams and through your scenario presentation.
Information with the red background is additional study materials to help you prepare.
Hope you enjoy!
Key Study Materials from Alberta Envirothon
Video 1: Changing for Climate
Meet Lydia (Lida) Fialka BSc. (She/Her), Community Programs Coordinator of the Energy Transition Programs (Environment & Climate Resilience | Planning & Environmental Services), City of Edmonton. Here, she introduces the Changing for Climate Video Series.
Climate change affects everyone. Luckily, there are 1 million of us in Edmonton who can make a change. Meet the everyday Edmontonians, businesses and organizations who are actively Changing for Climate. Every action counts, and gets us closer to our goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Video 2: Local Scale Planning
In this talk, Sarah Kehler discusses how planning for climate change can help communities adapt. She begins by introducing what adaptation planning is, covering its benefits and risks, and overviewing what communities need to make adaptation work. Lastly, she concludes with how resilient development lays the foundation for effective adaptation planning.
Sarah Kehler, MSc, is a PhD candidate and Senior Research Associate in the Climate Adaptation and Resilience Lab, University of Alberta. Sarah has an MSc in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and a BA with a double major in Human Geography and Design. Her research is interdisciplinary in scope and explores the broad theme of environmental resilience. Specifically, Sarah’s research investigates how local scale governance and decision dynamics can impact the extent of adaptation planning and, more generally, disaster risk reduction
Video 3: Climate Mitigation vs Adaptation
Join Breanne Aylward, MSc, BSc (she/her), a PhD Student in the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta, as she explores climate mitigation and adaptation strategies.
Check out these resources to learn more:
Video 4: Exploring Urban Heat Islands
Video 5: Conservation in the North- People, Places, Species
Paul McCarney is a researcher and instructor at Yukon University in Whitehorse, Yukon. His research focuses on the intersection of social science, natural science, and local and Traditional Knowledge to support conservation and anti-colonialism.
Videos 6, 7, 8- Energy Series
Erin Daly (she/her) is a PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Science at the University of Alberta. Her research is focused on the assessment of perennial cereals in central Alberta: productivity and environmental performance.
Video 9: Policy- Wetland Case Study
Bart Musse is a Policy Specialist who works for Ducks Unlmited Canada, and organization that works to conserve wetlands and natural spaces for waterfowl, wildlife, and people.
INTERNATIONAL ENVIROTHON RESOURCES:
Visit the NCF-Envirothon's website for the Current Issue's key topics, learning objectives and learning resources.
Key Topic 1: Factors Contributing to a Changing Climate
1. Describe climate change and the process through which it occurs.
2. Outline the factors, both anthropogenic and natural, which influence climate and climate change.
3. Describe the major economic sectors that contribute to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
4. Describe major energy sources and explain how each contributes to climate change.
5. Outline indicators of climate change.
Key Topic 2: Measuring and Monitoring a Changing Climate
6. Describe the history of international collaboration on climate change and analyze the successes and shortcomings.
7. Describe the various sources of scientific data which are used as evidence of climate change and explain how we know this data to be reliable.
8. Evaluate climate data and draw conclusions based on that data.
9. Explain the use of modelling in forecasting climate and the sources of uncertainty in climate projections.
Key Topic 3: Risks and Impacts to Natural Resources and Society from a Changing Climate
10. Explain the consequences of climate changes on aquatic, forest, wildlife and soil ecosystems.
11. Describe the social and economic impacts of climate change.
Key Topic 4: Policies and Programs for Adapting to a Changing Climate
12. Explain how various levels of government, non-governmental organizations, and individuals are involved in mitigating and adapting to climate change at the local, national, and international levels.
13. Describe innovative technologies and programs designed to combat climate change.
14. Explain the importance of primary resource sectors (forestry, agriculture, fisheries) to the economy of New Brunswick.
15. Describe the unique challenges faced by regions largely dependent on primary resources, and how climate change influences these challenges.
16. Explain how to best apply climate change risk assessment and adaptation measures in regions with primary resource dependent economies.
For hundreds of years, New Brunswick’s economy has been strongly dependent on its primary resource sectors. Forestry, agriculture, fisheries, energy production, mining and tourism form the foundation for the socio-economic well-being of New Brunswickers. Climate change is predicted to have direct and indirect impacts on the natural environment on which these resource-based industries depend. These impacts may pose a threat to the viability of many New Brunswick resource-dependent communities.
The earth’s climate is constantly changing and has been doing so for billions of years. Although long-term fluctuations in temperature are normal and greenhouse gasses are emitted to the atmosphere from both natural and human-generated sources, the vast majority of climate scientists agree that the global warming observed since the mid-20th century (1950s) is cause for immediate concern. Human-induced emissions of greenhouse gasses are being released at a quicker rate than natural processes can remove them¹. Not only do climate models project an increase in temperature, but the models also predict increases in the frequency of hot days above 30⁰C (86⁰F) as well as changes in precipitation, extreme weather events, sea level rise, water stress, and ocean acidification. As a result, disruptive changes to ecosystems, the economy, and society are expected to occur on both local and global scales.
The changing climate is one of the most complex issues facing the world today. It spans many disciplines and aspects of everyday life: science, socio-economics, environment, health, politics, as well as moral and ethical values. The impact on New Brunswick’s economy and quality of life for its citizens will depend on how effectively we plan and prepare for the complex challenges and changes that will occur.
Students will learn about factors contributing to a changing climate, the effects of these changes on the environment and natural resources, and the unique challenges facing natural resource dependent communities. As they explore the impacts on human social and economic systems, they will learn about management strategies for mitigating and adapting to a changing climate, and the roles of innovative technologies and programs in responding to local and global changes.
¹ Bush, E. and Lemmen, D.S., editors (2019): Canada’s Changing Climate Report; Government of Canada, Ottawa, ON. 444 p.
Note that Part A of the Study Resources is 198 pages and over 91 MB so may take several minutes to download!
Key Study Materials from NCF Envirothon
Carbon capture - https://youtu.be/OKMANIFoJLc
Land reclamation - https://youtu.be/24QI_NISygg
Energy Dialogues - Inside Education - https://www.insideeducation.ca/energy-dialogues/
Our Energy Future - Inside Education - https://www.insideeducation.ca/learning-resources/our-energy-future-53/
Changing for Climate | City of Edmonton - edmonton.ca/changingforclimateseries
What Will The Future Energy System Look Like? | Ask An Energy Expert - https://youtu.be/jILMP7j4KGY
What Is Climate Change? | Ask An Energy Expert - https://youtu.be/DbigQ2HY-Ho
Power On Demand: Renewable Energy Storage | Energy Talks - https://youtu.be/kcLXVqaZ-EA
Barriers to Renewable Energy Development and Ways to Overcome Them - https://youtu.be/lk7doych3XU
Energy Transition & the Role of Cities, Neighbourhoods and Grassroots Organizations - https://youtu.be/dEx-Y_GiTN4
Science of Global Warming and Climate Change - Why Is It Important? Dr. David H Manz - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2_8vJJhwy0
City of Edmonton Energy Transition - https://youtu.be/Bip2xgfzkMc
Exploring Urban Heat Islands | Energy Landscapes - https://youtu.be/DJ9-0y2eng4
From Resistance to Acceptance of Wind Farms in Alberta | Energy Talks - https://youtu.be/ck3DHAK7iwc
Variety of energy, energy transition, environment, etc content from Future Energy Systems (University of Alberta) - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJr8N9KyFJ6d-t36TPtUlwg