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GEM-2 grant recipients

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Grant recipients for the second phase of the GEM program (GEM-2, 2013-2020)

Funding for these grants is mostly allocated through a competitive call for proposals process (solicited proposals). Outside of these Calls for Proposals, unsolicited proposals may be considered if they are directly aligned with the Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals (GEM) program outputs and/or outcomes, subject to availability and time. Both solicited and unsolicited proposals are always evaluated against the GEM program’s assessment criteria.

Geoscience

Recipients of Geoscience grants are successful proponents with proposals to help develop long-term Canadian geoscience capacity and to address pressing resource industry needs in the North.

2017 - 18 Single Year Grants

Grant recipients are listed in alphabetical order.

Physical Rock Property Compilation – Boothia Peninsula – Somerset Island, Laying the Foundation for Geophysical Data Modelling and Interpretation

Proponent: Brock University

Project Leader: Dr. Hernan Ugalde

GEM region of interest: Rae

GEM priority theme(s): Metallogeny of northern Canada; Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

 

Objectives:  The objective of this Project is to measure magnetic susceptibility, gamma spectrometry, conductivity, and NVIR spectrometry data on 1200 samples collected during the 2017 field season.  This GEM-2 Grant proposal is supporting the GEM-2 Boothia Peninsula – Somerset Island project that provided modern geoscience for the underexplored, politically important Northwest Passage region, where knowledge stems from 1963 and 1986-92 without prior benefit of aeromagnetic constraints or modern geochronology. Data acquired, including new regional aeromagnetic data, will collectively elucidate the extent, age and character of crustal domains; establish the location, timing and impacts of sites of rifting and collision; assess mineral resources attributed to, and affected by, these complex interactions; and collectively lay the foundation for sustainable economic development across the North.  To date, the aeromagnetic data has been utilized to trace the extent of geological units under glacial till and Paleozoic cover.

Benefits to Canada:  This project utilizes geological field and state-of-the-art analytical techniques that will significantly advance and modernize the geological knowledge of Canada’s North, including the metallogeny of economically relevant rock units. Because the proposed Project takes place at established and high-capacity laboratory facilities in Canada, there is a great potential for high-impact products that can contribute new information to bedrock mapping programs in the GEM-2 regions of interest.

Tectonometamorphic evolution of the Core Zone, South-East Churchill Province, Québec

Proponent: Université Laval

Project Leader: Dr. Carl Guilmette

GEM region of interest: Hudson-Ungava

GEM priority theme(s):  Metallogeny of northern Canada; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:   The objective of this project is to use geochronology to better constrain metamorphism in that segment of the Tasiuyak gneiss that is undisturbed by the Abloviak shear zone.  This work is part of the Proponent’s more extensive Tectocore project that is focused on assessing the extent, intensity and timing of tectonometamorphism in the various domains that comprise Quebec’s Nunavik area (i.e. New Quebec Orogen [NQO], Torngat Orogen [TO] and the Archean Core Zone [CZ] gneiss block).

Benefits to Canada:  This project, coupled with the results of the Proponent’s significantly more extensive Tecotocore initiative, supports the development of a modern geological knowledge framework for this relatively poorly studied part of Labrador/Quebec, which in turn could draw the attention of the scientific and industrial communities to the Hudson-Ungava region.

Using Ca and Mg Isotopes to Track Fluid Flow in the Lake Mesoproterozoic Borden Basin, Baffin

Proponent: McGill University

Project Leader: Dr. Galen Halverson 

GEM region of interest: Baffin

GEM priority theme(s): Metallogeny of northern Canada; Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins

Objectives:  The objective of this project is to use Calcium (Ca) and Magnesium (Mg) isotopes to understand the history of fluid flow through late Mesoproterozoic carbonate platforms of the Bylot Supergroup.

Benefits to Canada:  The new data generated as part of this project will be integrated with existing databases from late Mesoproterozoic sedimentary rocks of northern Baffin Island and used to develop a more thorough model of the depositional and alteration history of an economically important sedimentary basin.

Mineralogy, Macro, Trace, and Rare Earth Element Analysis of Selected Precambrian through Tertiary Bylot and Baffin Island Strata

Proponent: Memorial University of Newfoundland

Project Leader: Dr. Elliott Burden

GEM region of interest: Baffin

GEM priority theme(s): Metallogeny of northern Canada; Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins; Thermochronology and low temperature thermal history of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of this project is to construct a large geographically extensive collection of rock lithology and chemical data for some Cretaceous and Tertiary strata of the eastern Arctic.

Benefits to Canada: This data will provide a better understanding of the structure, regional bedrock stratigraphy and resource potential of Cretaceous and Tertiary strata of the eastern Arctic, which may be useful in the development of more informed mineral exploration strategies on Baffin Island.  Parks Canada can use the project data to better interpret the basic geology and structure of the Bylot Island National Park, and add to the ecotourism potential of the region.

Dating Metamorphism in the Tantato Domain using Lu-Hf Gamet Geochronology

Proponent: University of British Columbia Okanagan

Project Leader: Dr. Kyle Larson

GEM region of interest: Rae

GEM priority theme(s): Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives: The objective of this Project is to use Lutetium-Hafnium [Lu-Hf] age dating to derive new constraints on the timing of metamorphism for rocks on either side of a large, poorly understood shear zone in the Tantato Domain of Northern Saskatchewan.

Benefits to Canada: The area that will be examined in northern Saskatchewan is part of a Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals (GEM) priority research area.  This project will help elucidate some of the targets specified by GEM and contribute to a better understanding of the geological history and potential metallogenic significance of northern Saskatchewan’s Tantato Domain.

Multivariate Analysis of Till Composition in the Hudson Bay Lowland:  Implications for drift Prospecting

Proponent: University of Waterloo

Project Leader: Dr. Martin Ross

GEM region of interest: Hudson-Ungava

GEM priority theme(s): Glacial history and drift prospecting of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives: The objective of this Project is to develop a geochemical classification of glacial sediment (till) from northeastern Manitoba to improve understanding of their composition from a mineral exploration point of view and to assess the potential for a buried Precambrian inlier with economic potential.

Benefits to Canada: The project will provide new geosciences knowledge about an underexplored region within the Hudson-Ungava area, advancing the understanding of glacial history in northern Canada.  Results will support ongoing mineral exploration and/or attract new investments.  Additionally, this project will train highly qualified personnel ready to contribute to the Canadian geosciences workforce.

2017 - 19 Multi-Year Grants

Grant recipients are listed in alphabetical order.

Grant recipients are listed in alphabetical order.

Tectonothermal Evolution of the Nain and Hopedale Blocks

Proponent: Cape Breton University

Project Leader: Dr. Deanne van Rooyen

GEM region of interest: Hudson-Ungava

GEM priority theme(s):  Thermochronology and low temperature thermal history of northern Canada; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of the project is to investigate the Archean to Paleoproterozoic tectonothermal and metamorphic evolution of the Hopedale and Saglek blocks as exposed in Labrador and adjacent Northern Quebec as well as their recent exhumation and denudation history.

Benefits to Canada:  This project addresses a gap in the knowledge about the tectonothermal and crustal evolution of the North Atlantic Craton with respect to metamorphism during collisional orogenesis. The data and interpretations generated in this project will improve the geodynamic framework for studying the evolution of the Hudson-Ungava area and northern Canada, and provide critical constraints used to correlate areas of Labrador and Nunatsiavut with similar ones Greenland.  By supporting student projects that involve training in field mapping, metamorphic petrology, geochronology and thermochronology, the project serves to further develop and enhance Canadian geoscience capacity.

Cambro-Ordovician Stratigraphy in the Epicratonic Basin of NWT

Proponent: Laurentian University

Project Leader: Dr. Elizabeth Turner

GEM region of interest: Mackenzie

GEM priority theme(s):  Metallogeny of northern Canada; Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of the project is to undertake the last component of a major, multi-year project that will yield a complete transect (>500 km) of Cambiran-Ordovician strata from the epicratonic basin in the Selwyn basin (continental margin).

Benefits to Canada:  Project results will lead to a better understanding of the geological history of an extensive past of northwestern Canada that spans almost 15% of the Phanerozoic.  An increased understanding of the economic base metal potential of the study area has the potential to enhance exploration activity, which could stimulate the local economy by providing employment opportunities and result in greater northern revenue generation.  The project will also sustain and further develop Canadian research expertise and strengthen Canada’s position as a global leader in the discipline of geoscience.

Evaluating the Source of Copper in the Storm Deposit, Somerset Island (NU)

Proponent: Laurentian University

Project Leader: Dr. Elizabeth Turner

GEM region of interest: Rae

GEM priority theme(s):  Metallogeny of northern Canada; Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of this project is to determine whether the Aston Formation experience the type of subsurface water-rock interaction necessary to have been a viable copper source for the Storm Cu showing on Somerset Island.

Benefits to Canada:  Consistent with a key GEM objective, the project will provide basic geoscience knowledge about a relatively poorly studied geographic area in Canada’s Arctic island archipelago, which contains a group of impressive coper showings.  The project will also facilitate the training of highly qualified personnel equipping them with the knowledge, approaches and skills to make valuable contributions to Canadian geology.

Jurassic Sedimentation along the Yukon-Tanana-Slide Mountain Terrane Suture Zone: Regional Exhumation During Porphyry Mineralization

Proponent: Memorial University

Project Leader: Dr. Luke Beranek

GEM region of interest: Cordillera

GEM priority theme(s): Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:   The purpose of this project is to test the hypothesis that the Faro Peak formation resulted from the rapid exhumation of porphyry-bearing intrusions in central Yukon, analogous to recently published ideas for equivalent rocks of the Whitehorse trough situated farther to the west.

Benefits to Canada: The project utilizes state-of-the-art analytical techniques that will significantly advance and modernize the geological knowledge of Canada’s North, including the origin of sutures and economically relevance rock units.  Because the proposed laboratory work takes place at an established and high-capacity facility in Canada, there is a great potential for high-impact products that can contribute new information to bedrock mapping programs in the GEM-2 regions of interest.  The project will also sustain and further develop Canadian geoscientific expertise in through the training of a graduate-level student.

Structural and Thermal Evolution of the Klondike Gold Fields, Yukon Territory

Proponent: University of British Columbia

Project Leader: Dr. Murray M. Allan 

GEM region of interest: Cordillera

GEM priority theme(s): Metallogeny of northern Canada; Thermochronology and low temperature thermal history of northern Canada; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of this project is to develop a tectono-structural framework for the prolific Klondike gold fields. 

Benefits to Canada:  This project is expected to contribute cutting-edge, multidisciplinary geoscience to a region of special historic and current economic significance.  Results will enhance the geoscientific knowledge base for the Yukon Cordillera and promote mineral exploration and development in northern Canada.  Given that a key pillar of the Yukon economy is reliant on natural resource development, a greater scientific understanding of the Territory’s mineral endowment will contribute to effective policy/land-use decisions.

Kinematic Evolution of the Tantato Domain, Southeast Rae Craton, Northern Saskatchewan

Proponent: University of British Columbia

Project Leader: Dr. Kyle Larson 

GEM region of interest: Rae

GEM priority theme(s): Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of this project is to examine the internal structure of the Tantato domain in order to better understand the structural framework of the region, which may help to target future exploration for magnetic nickel-copper deposits.

Benefits to Canada:  Consistent with GEM Program objectives, the proposed research will lead to a better understanding of the geological processes involved with the development of the Rae craton and the evolution of the Archean crust across Canada’s North, including defining critical new geologic constraints necessary to assess previous contradicting geologic models for the development of the Tantato domain.  Better definition of the kinematic framework for rocks along the southeast margin of the Rae carton will help assess the potential of the area to host economic mineral deposits.  At the present time, magmatic nickel-copper showing have mainly been identified in rocks of the Upper Deck sub-domain, and it is hoped that a new structural understanding of the region will help assess the

potential for the occurrence of economic deposits in the Lower Deck sub-domain.

Low Temperature Thermochronology of Pearya, Northern Ellesmere Island:  Resolving the Architecture of the Canadian Arctic Margin

Proponent: University of Ottawa

Project Leader: Dr. David Schneider

GEM region of interest: Western Arctic

GEM priority theme(s): Evolution of Canada’s northern sedimentary basins; Thermochronology and low temperature thermal history of northern Canada; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective of this project is to conduct a low-temperature thermochronology investigation of the Pearya Terrane of northern Ellesmere Island to test existing models of circum-Arctic and regional basin evolution of the Canadian northern margin.  The Pearya Terrane is recognized as the only exotic terrane along the Canadian Arctic margin, and its enigmatic affinities obscure circum-Arctic paleogeographic reconstructions.  Given the potentially large volumes of economic resources contained within the Arctic Basin, insight on regional tectonic evolution and basin development is a necessity for future exploration.  

Benefits to Canada:  The research endeavours to continue to upgrade Canada’s capacity in advanced thermochronological methods and technologies that directly contribute to the development of integrated models of basin dynamics.  Exploration for, and development of, hydrocarbon-bearing strata along the Arctic Canada margin will have a positive economic impact on Canada.  The study area has been identified as having excelling oil and gas potential, and the proposed research will directly quantify major hydrocarbon exploration uncertainties while advancing the ways in which thermochronology is applied to geological investigation in Arctic frontier regions.

Geological Framework of the Northern Rae Province on Eastern Devon and Southeastern Ellesmere Islands

Proponent: University of Western

Project Leader: Dr. Gordon Osinski

GEM region of interest: Rae

GEM priority theme(s): Metallogeny of northern Canada; Thermochronology and low temperature thermal history of northern Canada; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives: The objective of this project is to establish a modern lithotectonic framework for the northing margin of the Rae Province and its relationship to terranes in the south and east.  In addition, ground-truth observations will supplement the advancement of remote-predictive mapping techniques for crystalline basement rocks in the Arctic.

Benefits to Canada:  The successful application of remote predictive mapping and algorithms by the project will further demonstrate “proof of concept,” which should enable Canadian satellite companies to expand the market for their products.  The provision of key new geochronological and geochemical data should support the development of a modern litho-tectonic framework interpretation for the northern margin of the Rae Province, which should facilitate correlation with the main Rae Province in the south and mineral resources-rich terranes in the east (i.e. Greenland).  By supporting student projects, the project facilitates the training of Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP) in GIS, field data collection and high Arctic geological mapping, and a range of geological analytical methods.

Barometry and Metal Fertility of Plutons in Relation to Major Fault Displacements, Northern Cordillera

Proponent: University of Victoria

Project Leader: Professor Dante Canil

GEM region of interest: Cordillera

GEM priority theme(s): Metallogeny of northern Canada; Tectonothermal evolution of northern Canada; Crustal architecture of northern Canada

Objectives:  The objective is to provide information on the depth of exposure of the crust, and displacements along many key fault structures in Cache Creek and neighbouring terranes of northwestern BC for inclusion in current tectonic models.

Benefits to Canada:  The project directly supports GEM’s priority objectives i.e. collect, acquire and analyze data by using and developing innovative multidisciplinary regional geo-mapping methods, as it applies to energy and minerals exploration; and produce high quality innovative science products and ideas and develop geological models and regional geoscience frameworks.  Project research will lead to an overall understanding of the metallogeny in relation to the tectonic development and crustal fabric of the northern Canadian Cordillera, which has the potential to attract increased investment6 and result in greater exploration success.  The project also supports the further education and training on Canada’s next generation of geoscientists in field mapping and geochronology/geobarometry.

Multidisciplinary projects

Recipients of Multidisciplinary grants are successful proponents with proposals to support the development of innovative approaches and tools that facilitate the use of GEM data and knowledge by Northerners.

2017-18

Grant recipients are listed in alphabetical order.

GEM Booklet

Proponent: Nunavik Mineral Exploration Fund

Objectives: The objective/purpose of this Project is to produce a booklet with specific information on the work done and results obtained by GEM in the last few years including as well partnership with the MERN. A Nunavik Guidebook was produced by the Nunavik Mineral Exploration Fund (NMEF) and Makivik Corporation in 2011. NMEF might update this booklet and include geoscientifical information about GEM and MERN. Booklet will have a similar aspect as the Nunavik Guidebook.

Benefits to Canada: It is in the interest and an objective of Canada to ensure a development of the northern communities. Projects aiming at triggering interests in the specific field of mineral related activities is necessary to include the development of the North in a sustainable way.

Nunavut Drill Hole Database

Proponent: NWT and Nunavut Chamber of Mines

Objectives: This project marks the first effort to compile drill hole information from Nunavut assessment reports into an easily-accessible data-set. The objective for this project is to compile the information from a minimum of 400 assessment reports. Each mineral assessment report can contain 10s to 1000s of pages. Some can be reviewed very quickly if they do not include drilling, others depending on the manner of presentation of drill data, will be significantly time-consuming.

Benefits to Canada: By enhancing economic development in Nunavut, this project benefits Canada by reducing the need for Federal Government funding of Territorial operations. This advances the goal of devolution. GEM geoscience programs and products have been of great value to mineral exploration, and the drill hole database will enhance the usefulness and applicability of other geoscience data sets being produced by GEM. Use of GEM data to provide Inuvialuit community organisations with a tool to enhance decision making regarding mineral exploration and development in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region

GIS to Integrate Traditional Knowledge with GEM Results Workshop

Proponent: University of Waterloo

Objectives: This proposal will develop a step-by-step guide to create 3D visualization products and physical 3D models of geologic terranes using open source or inexpensive commercial software for use in Northern high schools and the Nunavut Arctic College (NAC). The guide will instruct users in obtaining GEM data (e.g. CDEM topography, geologic maps, etc.), viewing and manipulating data in 3D software, and converting the digital models to physical models using 3D printing/routering techniques. A guidebook will be publicly available and physical models will be created and delivered to NAC in this project.

Benefits to Canada: Canada will increase its engagement of Northerners in high-tech fields and training in geologic analytical methods and 3D visualization. Further, this project will increase the use and knowledge of GEM geospatial datasets and their applications and create a publicly available, easy-to-understand educational document.

2017-19

Grant recipients are listed in alphabetical order.

A Geographic Information System (GIS) to Support the Development and Implementation of Mineral Strategies in the Western Arctic

Proponent: Aurora Research Institute

Objectives: The primary objective of this project is to develop a robust GIS that utilizes geoscience and spatial data to support the management of mineral strategies across the Western Arctic.

Benefits to Canada: Having mineral strategies developed with the support of meaningful, current, and accurate geoscience/geospatial information will result in a better planned investment in mineral exploration, as well as exploration with reduced environmental impact, which could result in increased northern economic opportunities.

Indigenous Knowledge and GEM Data Integration Workshop: Mobilizing Indigenous Knowledge and Geoscience to Enhance Decision-Making for Northern Mineral Exploration and Development

Proponent: Aurora Research Institute

Objectives: The main objective of this Project is to develop and host a 4-day Indigenous Mapping Workshop in Inuvik that will train NWT indigenous community members to optimally utilize GIS tools and available geoscience data in their decision-making.

Benefits to Canada: Because the economic viability of Northern Canada is largely dependent on natural resource development, initiatives that enhance digital and spatial literacy and develop skills and capacity amongst Northerners in the resource industry sectors represent positive outcomes. The Indigenous Knowledge and GEM Data Integration workshop will facilitate both knowledge exchange and capacity building amongst indigenous communities and regional stakeholders.

Kavilliq Regional Science Culture Camp: Hard Rock Camp

Proponent: Kavilliq Science Educator’s Community

Objectives: The objective of this project is to reinforce to camp participants, particularly Inuit youth, that there is a logical bridge between Western understanding of rocks and minerals and the traditional cultural knowledge of Inuit Elders and knowledge keepers. Not only does the camp provide an opportunity to introduce participants to formal scientific methods in an outdoor setting, but also those individuals who successfully complete this camp will receive two high school credits i.e. Outdoor Experiences 1(WLD1030) and Rocks and Minerals (ENM2070).

Benefits to Canada: Teaching of a rudimentary course on rocks and minerals represents an important first step in possibly preparing indigenous students for a future in the filed of geoscience. By engaging students in a forum outside of a traditional classroom setting, yet at the same time providing them with high school credits, the Camp represents an “alternative” form of education, which will hope to encourage northern students to stay in school and graduate.

Landscape and Geology: Geoscience Booklets for Communities in Nunavik and Nunatsiavut

Proponent: Cape Breton University

Objectives: The primary objective of this Project is to produce a series of geoscience-themed booklets based around six communities in Nunavik and Nunatsiavut that will highlight the geological history and landscape evolution of the surrounding areas using new data and interpretations from the GEM-2 program.

Benefits to Canada: Booklet production will provide an excellent resource for showcasing Canada’s natural and cultural heritage in areas that are at best poorly known to most Canadians (i.e. promote greater appreciation of the beauty and history of Canada’s North). This initiative provides a cost effective way for researchers and governmental organizations to share their work with a diverse audience. Highlighting GEM-2 program work and research will highlight the significance that the program has played in enhancing the Northern geoscience knowledge base.

Lutsel K’e Territory Map Compilation and Interpretive Workshops for Land Use Planning, Land Selection and Tourism Interpretation

Proponent: Lutsel K’e Dene First Nation

Objectives: The objective of this Project is to educate the: Lutsel K’e Dene First Nation’s Leadership; the Land Use planning committee; the Tourism Committee; and, Land Claims staff, about the geology of the First Nation’s traditional territory.

Benefits to Canada: A better understanding of the geology of the Lutsel K’e First Nation traditional lands will assist in the development of comprehensive land use plans; support the completion of the land claims process; and support further economic development and tourism in the region.

2018-19

Grant recipients are listed in alphabetical order.

Building Science, Communication, and Leadership Capacity in Canada’s Northern Youth

Proponent:Students on Ice Foundation

Objectives: The objective/purpose of this Project is to provide capacity development to youth living in the NRCan-GEM project areas; support the programming delivered on SOI Arctic Expeditions; and mentor youth outside their expedition experiences (supporting their personal and professional development in their communities). Additional opportunities, for example; to attend conferences, events and additional training, will also be available to youth from across the North. In addition, the project will support youth with a demonstrated interest in Geoscience and community engagement.

Benefits to Canada: Overall, the high school graduation rate in Canada is 85%, while rates in the territories range from 33% (Nunavut) to 64% (Yukon) and the benefit of providing enrichment opportunities at this pre-employment level is high. Providing experiences that build capacity, validate their culture and inspire excellence translates into a greater number of productive citizens.

Benefits for Canada include

  1. Provision of training and personal mentoring to youth in communities across the North
  2. Development of a skills training program for northern youth that enables them to become more engaged citizens

Nunavut Assessment Drill Database v2.0 (N.A.D.D. v2.0)

Proponent: NWT and Nunavut Chamber of Mines

Objectives: The project will complement the geoscientific knowledge and products produced by GEM for the Territory of Nunavut. The project will continue adding drill holes to an existing database (GEM funded previously development of this database) to eventually incorporate every drill hole contained in the INAC assessment report archive. This produces a simple and highly effective product that can be utilized by both industry and government. The objective for the two-year grant are drill holes from an aggregate 600 additional assessment reports.

Benefits to Canada: The Nunavut Assessment Drill Database version 1.0 (N.A.D.D v1.0), funded by GEM, was widely distributed. It is currently available on the Chamber of Mines website and the new version N.A.D.D v2.0 will be available on both the Chamber website and the Nunavut Geoscience website.

Publication of a Geological Association of Canada [GAC] Special Paper entitled “Geology and tectonic Evolution of the Slave Province, Canada: The View from Above and Below”

Proponent: Geological Association of Canada

Objectives: The objective of this project is to provide a comprehensive geological synthesis of the evolution of the economically significant Slave Craton, from the upper crust to the lithosphere.

Benefits to Canada: The proposed work directly supports a key GEM priority, namely to disseminate geoscientific framework knowledge to the Canadian scientific community and other key stakeholders (e.g., the Canadian mineral exploration community). The discovery of new Slave Craton mineral resources will provide several key derivative benefits to Northerners and Northern communities (e.g., improved land-use decision-making, direct employment and skills training, negotiation of mutually beneficial Impact Benefit and Supply Management agreements, etc.).

Territorial Colleges

Recipients of Territorial Colleges grants are successful northern institutions with proposals to develop innovative approaches and tools that facilitate the use of GEM data and information by northerners, enabling the use of modern regional geoscience knowledge to inform their decision making.

2014 to 2015

2015 Qaujisarniq Nunamik Education Program

Proponent: Nunavut Arctic College

Background: In the spring 2012 and 2014, data and knowledge derived from the Geo-mapping for Energy and Minerals (GEM) Program) was incorporated into the “Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Module” of the Environmental Technology Program (ETP) at Nunavut Arctic College’s Iqaluit facility.  The intent of the upgraded module, called the Qaujisarniq Nunamik Education Program (QNEP), was to provide students with a series of culturally and environmentally relevant lessons that used GIS and familiarized students with geoscience data so that they could learn how such knowledge could be incorporated in day-to-day community-related decision-making.  ETP graduates are the future environmental practitioners in Nunavut and will be looked to by their communities as the experts on a range of issues including those related to the resource industry. Statistics collected after QNEP 2014 proved that the course has been successful.  On average, students said they had a good-to-excellent understanding of the GEM program after completing QNEP.  Students also said they felt they had a good-to-excellent understanding of how GIS can be used as a decision-making tool with regards to the environment.

Students also said it was very beneficial to use local data and incorporate traditional knowledge into course material to learn the fundamentals of GIS.

ETP students represent a key stakeholder group in the dissemination of land-based knowledge and making this type of information more understandable to the broader community.  Another key stakeholder group are those already in the workforce and involved directly or indirectly in the geoscience and resource industries.  QNEP 2015 would like to open its classrooms to these key stakeholders from Inuit and government partner organizations to a 3-week course.  Through a promotional recruitment campaign, QNEP 2015 would like to expand participant base beyond the ETP students to those currently in the workforce that could benefit from training in the applicability of geoscience data and knowledge in order to develop skills required to make decisions related to economic development, land use planning, and environmental stewardship. 

Objectives:  The 2015 QNEP program builds on the success of the 2012 and 2014 QNEP and further integrates GEM data and traditional knowledge into the ETP’s GIS module. Opening QNEP 2015 to members and employees of Inuit and partner organizations in Iqaluit increases the dissemination of GEM and GIS knowledge across Nunavut. The program increases accessibility of geoscience data for Nunavummiut students and workforce and creates opportunities to enhance awareness and interest among Nunavummiut in training and career opportunities in Nunavut’s geoscience industry. Incorporating Traditional Knowledge (Quajimajatuqangit) into course material through student- led material development and knowledge awareness activities develops technical literacy and interest among Nunavummiut in geological mapping tools and technology and demonstrates the practicality of using geoscience data to inform land-use and resource exploration decision-making.

Benefits to Canada: Nunavut’s economy is expected to depend greatly on the natural resource and geoscience sectors for the foreseeable future which will create employment opportunities.  By educating Nunavummiut on issues related to the geoscience and resource sectors, a ready workforce is created in the territory to respond to the current and future industry needs.  Further, culturally appropriate training centred around local employment opportunities are essential to meet the growing demand for human resources from increased industrial activity in Nunavut.  Overall, QNEP 2105 will provide participants with better familiarity with ArcGIS, GEM and geoscience so they are better able to use data in conjunction with traditional knowledge to make land-use decisions. 

Nunavut Student Geoscience Field Training

Proponent: Nunavut Arctic College

Background: With a focus on building geoscience capacity in the North, in the spring of 2013 and 2014, as part of Dalhousie University’s normal Senior Field School Program, Nunavut Arctic College, the Department of Earth Sciences and the Canada-Nunavut Geoscience Office (CNGO) initiated a geoscience training initiative for northern youth. The geoscience training initiative was developed with the goal of providing students from the Nunavut Arctic College’s Environmental Technology Program (ETP) with meaningful training opportunities that would open doors to careers in the public and private sectors and/or higher education. In 2013, two ETP students, Patricia Peyton and Candice Sudlovenick, participated in the inaugural year of this training initiative from May 19 to May 29, alongside 21 other Dalhousie University students to southern Nevada and eastern California. In 2014, three ETP students, Randy Hinanik, Karlene Napayok and Joanna Panipak, attended the Dalhousie field school from May 18 to May 30. A fourth participant, Ed Long, from the Yukon, also attended in 2014. The six students participated in group field trips, field work exercises and customized exercises designed to develop field skills (i.e. identification of rocks and minerals in the field, recognition and recording of geological structures, and understanding the basic principles of geological mapping). In addition the field school served to introduce the students to the nature of field work, camp infrastructure and daily routine which were modelled after typical mineral Canadian exploration and government mapping projects. Following the field school, the Nunavut-based students worked as geoscience field assistants for CNGO staff in regional and targeted mapping projects. It was clear that their field school experience prepared them for the rigors of field work and they were able to integrate into the field crew as effective contributors to the overall project goals.

Objectives: The 2015 Nunavut Student Geoscience Training Field School focuses on four major themes: Regional Stratigraphy, the idea of looking at geology through time; Compressional Tectonics, the study of mountain building events; Extensional Tectonics, and the development of big valleys; and Strike Slip Tectonics. In addition to providing practical training to northern participants about how to observe and record salient geological data, the field school is structured to provide exposure to “camp life” that students should expect to face in the professional world. The Nunavut Student Geoscience Training Program represents part of a larger pilot project that ETP, Dalhousie and the CNGO are formulating in an effort to draw more young Inuit into earth sciences like geology and palaeontology. Other key components of the pilot project include providing opportunities for the Nunavut students to work as summer field assistants on regional and thematic CNGO and GEM projects, being taught basic geology at the CNGO offices, and writing a report of their field school and summer work experiences.

Benefits to Canada: This program provides geoscience training and mentoring opportunities for students, professionals and Northerners, increasing the number of qualified northern-based geoscience professionals, which is expected to lead to local and regional employment opportunities within both the public/private sectors. This program also provides a vehicle for the training of technical skills and knowledge in geological mapping tools/technology, and the broader dissemination of modern geoscience data and information amongst northern students.

Integrating digital technology into geologic field instruction

Proponent: Yukon College

Background: Digital data collection and cartography are fundamental components of the primary mapping conducted by government surveys, academic researchers, and mineral exploration companies. However, most field instruction at the undergraduate level is centered on paper-based maps and handwritten data collection. Yukon College proposes to integrate current best practices into instruction by purchasing handheld computers and mapping software in order to prepare northern students for employment in geoscience fields. This includes instruction in GIS-based digital mapping and data collection, and the integration of publically available geoscience data. Students can then draw on this expertise to benefit local employers when entering the northern workforce.

Objectives: The purchase of handheld computers and mapping software at Yukon College will: 1) standardize instruction with current geological survey and industry techniques, and 2) provide a platform for integrating GEM geological mapping products into instruction. Students will interact with GEM data during field exercises and utilize publically available geoscience data. They will be able to apply GIS skills in the workplace and contribute to resource-related decision making.

Benefits to Canada: This project and related instruction will provide northern students with valuable experience in digital geoscience data collection, display and map construction. Students will acquire valuable and current skills that will benefit future employers, be they mineral exploration companies, environmental consulting firms, or northern governments. Training will assist graduates in resource-related decision-making, including land-use decision making. This project will train skilled employees who will have the ability to contribute to the development of northern resource industries in Canada, ultimately impacting Canada’s economic development. Yukon College Geological Technology Program graduates will be met with increased success in the workplace and will be able to disseminate their expertise over the course of their careers, benefiting northern co-workers and those from across Canada.

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