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Mapping the Future of Nova Scotia’s Natural Resources

NSCC Kingstec Campus Projects Benefit Rural and Coastal Economies

February 13, 2015 – Kentville, NS – Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Two new projects are pairing Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) with the province’s wine industry and selected natural resource sectors to optimize growth opportunities through innovative hands-on research. The Government of Canada is providing a $425,000 contribution to NSCC to support these initiatives through ACOA’s Innovative Communities Fund.

Nova Scotia’s wine industry contributes nearly $200 million annually to the provincial economy. As the industry continues to grow, there is a need to develop specialized skills and focused research that will spur the sector’s productivity, diversification and ability to compete globally. Seizing this opportunity, NSCC’s Kingstec Campus is partnering with the Perennia Innovation Centre and the Nova Scotia Grape Growers Association to establish a learning vineyard and winery applied-research facility that will enable students to acquire specialized knowledge that will contribute to the sector’s development.

NSCC’s Middleton Campus is also testing the potential of new topo-bathymetric LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) mapping technology for applications in Nova Scotia’s aquaculture, forestry and agriculture sectors. Using aircraft-mounted lasers, detailed topographic scans of farmland, forest and the submerged coastal seafloors of oceans and lakes are providing information that assists in areas such as sustainable harvesting, aquatic vegetation health, and storm surge prediction. These areas have traditionally not been mapped in great detail due to the high cost of conventional aerial photos and boat-launched echo sounders.

Quick Facts:

In 2013, the Winery Association of Nova Scotia released an economic impact study concluding that in 2011 the winery industry contributed $196 million to the NS economy.

To date, LiDAR scans have been completed in John Bay, Cape John and Little Harbour.Completed LiDAR scans have revealed reefs that may pose navigation hazards, complex folds and faulting visible offshore, as well as the distribution of sand deposits and submerged vegetation.The LIDAR is a topographic and bathymetric laser sensor equipped with a powerful mapping camera that can take high resolution images in the visible (RGB) and near infrared (NIR).

Quotes:

“Our Government continues to make technological advancement and skills development priorities in order to create jobs and economic opportunities for hard-working Canadians in every region of the country. Today’s investments with the Nova Scotia Community College will lead to sustainable growth opportunities for invaluable natural resources and ultimately greater market awareness for the province’s globally competitive products.”

     – Senator Kelvin Ogilvie on behalf of the Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (ACOA)

“The Nova Scotia government is pleased to help our community college students gain technological skills that can lead to employment and help them contribute to improved management and marketing of our natural resources.”

     – Keith Irving, MLA for Kings South, on behalf of Nova Scotia Minister of Natural Resources, Zach Churchill.

“These projects represent unique offerings for Canada’s post-secondary educational landscape,” said Isabel Madeira-Voss, Principal, NSCC Kingstec Campus. “NSCC is the only academic institution in Canada to own its own bathymetric LiDAR equipment, and is one of only a handful of educational institutions across the country to offer a learning vineyard to its students. Both represent exceptional learning resources which, in turn, can inspire economic development opportunities.”

     – Isabel Madeira-Voss, Principal, NSCC Kingstec Campus.

Associated Links :

Contacts:

Kelsie Corey
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of State
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
613-941-7241

Alex Smith
Director, Communications and Outreach
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
902-426-9417/902-830-3839 (cell)
E-mail: Alex.Smith@acoa-apeca.gc.ca

Kathleen Cameron
Senior Communications Advisor
Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC)
902-491-4899
Email: Kathleen.Cameron@nscc.ca

Bruce Nunn,
Media Relations Advisor
Department of Natural Resources, Nova Scotia
902-424 5239 / 902-476 6454 (cell)
Email: Bruce.X.Nunn@novascotia.ca

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