False colour satellite image of Nanaimo, BC

2018 Runner-Up

Shannon McCartney

Shannon McCartney is the 2018 Carto Cup Runner-Up for her map showing "British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest - Old Growth Forest."

"The Great Bear Rainforest (GBR) is a 6.4 million hectare nature preserve in the coastal temperate rainforest ecosystem, located on British Columbia’s north and central Pacific Coast. In February 2016, the Province of British Columbia agreed to conserve 85% of the forest and increase protection of old-growth from 50 – 70%. The provincial government is allowing 550,000 hectares to be harvested to support the local economy, which is about 15% of the forest. British Columbia holds approximately 25% of the world’s coastal temperate rainforests and is important for biodiversity and a site for carbon sequestration. Old growth potential in the Great Bear Rainforest is limited to four biogeoclimatic zones in British Columbia, Coastal Western Hemlock, Interior Douglas Fir, Mountain Hemlock and Sub-boreal Spruce. Human processes that cause habitat fragmentation include but are not limited to timber harvesting, road building (highways, forestry roads, etc), railways, pipelines, transmission lines, urbanization and forest fires.

This map is part of a series of maps for a Geography 490 – senior research project on habitat quality in the great bear rainforest. The project continues to look at other disturbances like roads, transmission lines, pipelines, etc., to calculate habitat fragmentation but this map is the key to determine what percentage of the forest is considered old growth. ... This map and project are important because I wanted to research something that I could illustrate in GIS with the research in my project. I am passionate about the environment, especially forested areas in coastal zones, and have always felt close to BC’s north coast. Habitat fragmentation is an important issue that is often overlooked in land use agreements and forest management acts, so the project aligned my interests with real issues in BC." - Shannon McCartney


Shannon's Map Entry