Environment: Natural Disasters
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The side of a mountain suddenly collapses, transforming a pristine white blanket into a raging wall of destruction and death. An avalanche used to be considered an unpredictable, and rarely survivable, force of nature. But with each tragedy experts have learned more about why avalanches happen, how their impact can be minimized and what people can do to survive their terrible force.
Canada's Earthquakes and Tsunamis
Beneath our feet, Canada is constantly atremble. Earthquakes shake the country about 2,500 times per year, most too small to feel. But occasionally, and without warning, the earth's crust below Canada buckles and spasms to frightening effect. More dangerous are the tsunamis that such quakes can cause. CBC Archives looks back at notable Canadian quakes, fears about "the big one" predicted for the West Coast and scientists' efforts to better understand the threat from below.
Fighting Forest Fires
A dry forest, some hot weather, and high winds: all it takes to set off a raging fire in these conditions is a lightning strike or a careless camper. Every summer, forest fires threaten people, property and valuable timber in Canada. But we've learned to combat these fires with a combination of scientific research, new inventions and old-fashioned courage. From lookout towers to water bombers to remote sensing that predicts fire, Canada has long been a world leader in the technology of fighting forest fires.
Natural Disasters General
What's Eating Canada's Trees?
It begins as a tiny stowaway on a crate from Europe or Asia, a relocated piece of firewood, or just a mild winter. Within decades, millions of hectares of Canada's woodlands have been laid waste because of it. Armies of tiny insects have stripped city boulevards of stately elms and ruined billions of dollars worth of softwood. Since the 1950s, science has fought these invading waves of caterpillars and beetles using everything from DDT to pheromones and bacteria. But victory seems no closer in the fight to save Canada's trees.