Canadian history


Nature’s Past Episode 52: Hydro-Power and War

    Episode 52: Hydro-Power and War [51:26] Download Audio What fuels war? The total war of the Second World War placed enormous demands on the resources and environment of Canada. Manufacturing equipment for the war and harvesting natural resources for production were some of the most substantial contributions Canadians made […]


The Biggest Oil Pipeline Spills in Canadian History

In March 1950, four Alberta “pipeline walkers” spoke with a reporter from Canadian Press about their tireless work. Each worker walked twelve to fifteen miles per day, checking on pipeline facilities in the Edmonton district and looking for leaks, a consistent problem for Alberta’s booming oil industry in the mid-twentieth […]


Burrard Inlet, Beaches, and Oil Spills: A Historical Perspective

Last week, British Columbians once again witnessed the effects of oil on Burrard Inlet. Local authorities cautioned residents to avoid the water along the shores in Vancouver and West Vancouver after a large slick of bunker fuel oil appeared on the surface of Burrard Inlet. Around 5pm Wednesday, April 8, 2015, a boater notified Port […]


Book Review: Ingram’s Wildlife, Conservation, and Conflict in Quebec, 1840-1914

I just published a review of Darcy Ingram’s book, Wildlife, Conservation, and Conflict in Quebec, 1840-1914. The review appears in H-Net Reviews here. You can download a PDF version of the review here.   Conservation in a Distinct Society Wildlife conservation in Quebec was distinct from the rest of Canada not […]


Nature’s Past Canadian Environmental History Podcast Episode 46: Historical GIS Research in Canada

  Episode 46: Historical GIS Research in Canada, 26 January 2015 [38:27] Download Audio In recent years, environmental historians and other historians have been working with maps in new ways. Specifically, they have been using HGIS software, that is, historical geographic information systems. You may have heard a bit about this […]


Five Things You Might Not Have Known About Canadian Environmental History

Canadian environmental history is a burgeoning sub-field of Canadian history, but it is not very well known outside of academia. This is my own research speciality. On many occasions, I have had to answer the question: what is environmental history? Periodically, this is a question that environmental historians ask themselves. […]


Nature’s Past Canadian Environmental History Podcast Episode 45 Available

Episode 45: The St. Lawrence Seaway and Power Project, 29 October 2014 [56:00] Download Audio It cuts through the centre of the continent linking all of the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean. Long the ambition of governments, industry, and continentalist visionaries, the St. Lawrence Seaway fulfilled the mid-century modernist dream of […]