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 Innovation Anthology

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Program ID: Innovation Anthology #398
Program Date: 05/12/2011
Program Category: Energy, Environment, Forests, Oil Sands, Water

CONRAD Part 12: Dr. Kevin Devito on Boreal Hydrology

For more than a decade, Dr. Kevin Devito has researched the unique hydrology of the boreal forest.

Dr. Devito is a professor specializing in eco-hydrology at the University of Alberta.

His findings from the Utikuma Lakes region of northern Alberta have particular importance to industries like forestry and oil sands production.

DR. KEVIN DEVITO: First of all that it's really quite different from other parts of Canada, driven mostly by the climate. It's sub-humid, as well as the deep glacial deposits that we have here really increase storage. So storage of water is very important. And evapotranspiration by the vegetation has a large control on the hydrology in this landscape. So when you are looking at how water flows through this landscape you need to understand where the storage is a lot less or a lot more to understand the sink and the storage of water through this landscape. And what we're starting to realize now is that most forested areas, will be a sink for water because of the high demand by vegetation in an area that's sub-humid or in a deficit.

Dr. Kevin Devito presented his research at a recent workshop on oil sands reclamation.

Thanks today to Syncrude Canada Ltd

FOR INNOVATION ANTHOLOGY
I'M CHERYL CROUCHER

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Syncrude's Mal Carroll explains the long and careful process involved in creating a lake out of a spent oil sands mine pit. (Syncrude)

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