Interior Plains


Extends through the middle of Canada, from north to south. Covers most of Alberta and Saskatchewan, also covers some of Northwest Territories and Manitoba.

Physical Features

The interior plains are very flat with deep, fertile soil. This was created when sediments from the Shield and the Rocky Mountains were deposited in shallow inland seas and compressed into layers of sedimentary rock. The planes also have very cold winters and hot summers, because there is no Near Water to absorb some of the heat, or cold breeze.

The graph above shows monthly precipitation, and temperature for a part of the Interior plains (Alberta).

Biological Features

The southern part of the interior plains is mostly treeless, full of grass and herbs, but the northern part is home to many coniferous trees called the Boreal Forest. This forest extends from the Rocky Mountains all the way across to Newfoundland, with spruce, tamarack, and poplar being the most prominent species.


The Interior plains are mostly used for farming wheat and cattle. This region is known as Canada's "Bread Basket". There is not much to do in the plains, but it is great for farming. The sedimentary rock contains rich mineral, coal, oil and gas deposits, so you can make some nice money if you get a job that involves these activities.

Climate Change

The change in climate affects the plains by increasing the length of the growing season. That is because snow-cover fall has decreased and spring run-off is starting earlier, year by year. The temperatures are also rising in the Interior Plains. The yearly average temperature has increased by about 1.2 degrees over about the last 50 years, but winter temperatures have warmed about 3 degrees and summer temperatures have warmed only 0.2 degrees. Since 1948, 7 of the top 10 warmest years on the Prairies have occurred after 1981. Negative impacts include melting of glaciers which will be causing floods. Since there are over 1300 glaciers in the Plains, all of them are melting due to increase in temperatures. Having 1300 glaciers melting will cause a huge flood, this is why it is dangerous to live in the Interior Plains, because of negative impacts on climate change.

Comment Stream