Western Cordillera - Forestry industry

Landform Region

    The land form region that I have chosen to make this industry in is the western cordillera. The western cordillera is a vast land mass that covers the western coast of Canada with thick mountainous terrain, and encompasses most of British Columbia, the Yukon territories, and some parts of the north west territories. The traits of the mineral-rich, firm mountains in the Western Cordillera are clearly established like wise in the soil of the Western Cordillera which is very rich in minerals. Due to the richness of the soil, the Western Cordillera is known for it's vast amount of trees which are healthy and well established. Due to these natural advantages in the Western Cordillera, and the fact that there is a lot of unindustrialised land covered in trees,I think the Western Cordillera would be the perfect area for a forestry industry.

Vegetation and Soil

    Although the Western Cordillera consists of lots of mountains, a large portion of it is covered by forests, and you can't have forests unless you have vegetation and soil. Contrary to popular belief, there is a wide variety of soil types in the western cordillera which corresponds accordingly to the elevation and temperature of the area. The soil and vegetation type of different areas in the western cordillera is also dependent on many other factors. For instance on the western portion of the western cordillera the rain is likely to be more intense resulting in different vegetation on the western side than the eastern side. This is evident when you look at the eastern side of the western cordillera which is where the valleys are. The temperature is much warmer in the valleys and as a result the vegetation is very different. You can see grasses growing in the arid valleys on the east side. The soils in these areas are very similar to those found in the grasslands. This leads to calcification in which many minerals are moved upwardly towards the top layer of soil. In areas where the rainfall is heavier, the coniferous trees grow. On the contrary, around the higher areas of the Cordilleran mountain ranges there are meadows with lush flowers. In the highest areas, no vegetation can survive. Due to the variety of altitudes and climate in the western cordillera soils of all types can be found on these mountains. Soil type differs according to elevation,slope,rainfall,and vegetation around the area.

Geology - Rock types

     There are three main sectors of the Western Cordillera, each of which yield a wide variety of rocks. Namely, the Eastern Mountains, the Interior Plateaus, and the Coast Mountains. First of all, the Eastern mountains are made of the Rocky and Columbia mountains. The Rocky Mountains have been produced by the interactions and faulting of tectonic plates which are almost entirely made of Sedimentary rock. The Columbia mountains have also been produced by the faulting of sedimentaryd metamorphic rock in layers underneath the surface. Secondly, there are the Interior Plateaus which are in the center of the Western Cordillera and consist of igneeous and metamorphic rock which are also ores containing precious rocks. The coast mountains are divided into 2 different sectors which are the Island Mountain range and the Coast mountain range. these are also formed by tectonic plate movements which have built up pressure under the Pacific Ocean and made magma rise to the surface, cooling after a while forming the Coast mountains. The moving of plates is able to produce large amounts of rock, which in this case are blocks of igneous and metamorphic rock.


    The climate of the Western Cordillera is often very unpredictable in most regions but none of the seasons are too extreme. There is commonly heavy precipitation in every season which helps the soil and the trees a lot. Because of the moderate climate in the Western Cordillera, the soil is neither calcified because of arid or dry conditions or leached because of very humid and wet conditions. The climate of the Western Cordillera plays a heavy role in the trees that grow there as can clearly be seen with the climate of southern parts of the Cordillera as oppose to northern parts of the Cordillera. You won't see many trees in the low parts of British Columbia because of the lack of precipitation. However, if you go to the shore there will be a lot of precipitation, and if you go north, you will typically see a climate that is closer to the colder side but not too extreme. Overall the Western Cordillera has a climate common to the rest of Canada in most areas and is a very beautiful land form region full of wild life,plants, and mountains.

Details of Industry

    I believe that the most profitable industry in the Western Cordillera would be a forestry industry. From the information above in the climate section, I can deduce that the best area for trees would probably be around the Yukon close to the coastal area, as this region is given enough precipitation, isn't too cold, and still has an abundance of trees. This industry would best take advantage of the natural resources in the Western Cordillera. There are lots of forests in the western cordillera which brings lots of trees. This can be sold as lumber to other countries or can be used domestically. The trees in the western cordillera account for the majority of Canada's lumber. 70% of Canada's lumber comes from this region and there are over 2000 sawmills that employ people. For these reasons it would be very profitable to make a forestry industry, and all of the resources that are required are already put in place.

Human Activities

    Some commonly enjoyed human activities in the Western Cordillera include skiing, snowboarding, mountain hiking, and rock climbing. These recreational activities take advantage of the rocky mountainous terrain and also the climate on the mountains which quite commonly are covered in snow. The Western Cordillera is among the best if not the best region in Canada to enjoy winter sports like skiing and snow boarding. Not only is the Western Cordillera conveniently crafted for recreational activities, but also for business opportunists who are focusing on resources available in the region, which is the main highlight of this tackk. As I have stressed in the earlier parts of this tackk, the Western Cordillera is full of trees which are well soiled and perfect for a forestry industry because of all of the lumber available. This can clearly be seen by looking at many of the pictures above which show all of the trees available in the Western Cordillera.

Natural Disaster Risk

    Although it may seem obvious that Canada is generally not a geologically active region of Canada, the central areas of the Western Cordillera remain geologically active. There are in fact stagnant volcanoes along north - western British Columbia. The chances are extremely minimal that there would be a volcanic eruption, but it remains a slim possibility that people should be made aware of.

Effects of Climate Change

     If the climate in the Western Cordillera were to change because of global warming or other natural processes, this would not majorly affect the forestry industry. This is because the trees in the Western Cordillera have adapted to year round temperatures which vary. However, if there was not enough precipitation, which there will always be because of the near water climate effects, the soil would become calcified and all of the minerals would move up to the humus and top layer of the soil. This wouldn't likely effect the more achieved trees in the Western Cordillera though which have been around for a long time.

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