Establishing baseline conditions and trends for contaminants and climate for a community-based aquatic ecosystem monitoring program.
Field, laboratory, and modelling studies to identify, quantify, and predict mobility of natural source and legacy mine-source metals in headwater catchment-lake systems.
Understanding flow levels in response to 2013–16 drought period, which increased expenditures on use of diesel fuel to generate electricity in Yellowknife and area.
Supporting local food strategy development through Yellowknife Food Charter Coalition based on food systems approach.
Understanding how permafrost thaw alters dissolved organic matter and solubility/mobility of metals, which effects drinking water and ecosystem health.
Examining the impact of changing snow conditions and Arctic Oscillation on winter foraging behaviour of Bathurst caribou and how that relates to the winter shift in foraging grounds from boreal forest to tree line-tundra area.
Exploring impact of mine source dust and diesel combustion on vegetation and barren ground caribou to improve management of mining dust.
Examining subsurface temperatures and ground surface displacement for a range of sub-grade materials used below roads in the Northwest Territories. This will provide guidance for optimal road materials to given environmental conditions and road use.
Assessing sources, levels, and ways of coping with psychological stress related to historical and current activities at the Giant Mine site. This will inform ongoing remediation and empower communities to address sources and consequences of stress.
Laurier's involvement in the Yellowknife Fall Harvest Fair evolved out of a long-term partnership and collaboration with Ecology North to work on food security research in the NWT. The Fall Harvest Fair is an annual event to bring the Dettah, Ndilǫ and Yellowknife communities together in celebration of local food and harvests. The event is held in collaboration with Ecology North, Yellowknives Dene First Nation (YKDFN) and Yellowknife Community Garden Collective.
Since 2014, multiple graduate students associated with the Laurier’s Centre for Sustainable Food Systems and Food: Locally Embedded, Globally Engaged (FLEdGE) SSHRC Partnership Grant have engaged in food security research through the Laurier – Ecology North partnership to support local food initiatives in Yellowknife.
In 2015 Laurier doctoral student Andrew Spring initiated the ground work to support the Fall Harvest Fair and in 2016 and 2017 Masters student, Carla Johnston, played a leading role in coordinating the event as part of her food systems research in Yellowknife.
In 2018 Molly Stollmeyer continued this work and will return to support the event in 2019. For the past four years, FLEdGE and Laurier have supported the Fall Harvest Fair financially as it is an important event for our partners and communities.
Initiated by Tłıįchǫ Government’s Marian Watershed Stewardship Program (MWSP), Laurier professor Brent Wolfe was contacted in 2014 to contribute to their aquatic ecosystem monitoring efforts. They were concerned about pollution from proposed mining in their Traditional Territory. Soon after, James Telford, an MSc student supervised by Wolfe and co-supervised by Professor Roland Hall of the University of Waterloo, began working closely with the Tłıįchǫ. James participated in MWSP field sampling trips in 2015-17, where he trained MWSP members in sampling techniques.
Sampling sites were selected through consultation with the Tłıįchǫ and focused on areas culturally and scientifically important. This collaborative effort created excellent opportunities for knowledge sharing. Results have established long-term baseline conditions of sediment metals concentrations in lakes. These sites can be monitored now and in the future to assess for pollution.
The success of this project demonstrates the strengths and benefits of combining Tłıįchǫ traditional knowledge and northern scientific research to augment a community-led monitoring initiative.
Laurier researchers and Ecology North partner on Twitter bot project to raise awareness about climate change
Laurier’s Yellowknife office supports Fall Harvest Fair
Laurier Cold Regions Research Centre to host lecture on caribou decline in Northwest Territories
Global Water Futures to fund Laurier water research addressing climate change in Canada’s North
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