Tag Archives: Vancouver Island

Gigantic wave in Pacific Ocean was most extreme ‘rogue wave’ on record; ‘Most extreme ever’: British Columbia’s rogue wave shatters records, stuns scientists

December 10, 2023| ScienceAlert via UVic News; December 13, 2023| The Times of India via UVic News

A ‘rogue wave’ – a wave that is at least twice the size of any near it – appeared near Ucluelet, Vancouver Island in 2020. In February of 2022, researchers determined that it to be the largest such wave ever recorded.

Dr. Johannes Gemmrich, Research Scientist in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and co-author Leah Cicon (a former graduate student of the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences at UVic), wrote about the wave in their 2022 publication Generation mechanism and prediction of an observed extreme rogue wave. The paper was one of Nature Journal’s Top 100 Most Downloaded Papers in 2022.

Dr. Gemmrich, who was quoted in recent articles on the subject from both Science Alert and the Times of India, also has several of his papers posted in UVic’s institutional repository, UVicSpace. The Copyright and Scholarly Communications Office encourages you to browse UVicSpace and read more of Dr. Gemmrich’s work.

Featured Thesis: Caring for lhuq’us (pyropia spp.)

By Jack Baker

https://dspace.library.uvic.ca:8443/handle/1828/12149

An M.A.. thesis in the Department of Anthropology

Abstract:

Hul’qumi’num communities on south eastern Vancouver Island have concerns about the status and safety of marine foods potentially impacted by environmental change and the urbanization and industrialization of their territories. Collaborative research undertaken with the Hul’q’umi’num’ Lands and Resources Society is part of a broader effort to revitalize cultural practices, language, and food systems. Lhuq’us (the Hul’q’umi’num’ language term for pohrpyra/pyropia spp. (commonly known as red laver or black gold)) is a flavourful and nutritious intertidal seaweed that grows on rocky beaches across the Pacific Northwest. Hul’q’umi’num’ language, cultural values, teachings, and family histories are all interwoven into the harvesting and consumption of lhuq’us in Hul’qumi’num territories. Lhuq’us is one of the species that have been persistently mentioned in conversations with state regulatory agencies and though these concerns have been raised for at least two decades there has been no systematic monitoring of the species. There are two broad streams of inquiry taken by thesis thesis. The first, employing ethnographic methodology including interviews and observant participation, seeks to both document the cultural values, oral histories, lived experiences associated with lhuq’us as well as concerns for the future collaborators have for lhuq’us and lhuq’us beaches. The second stream, based in a geographic approach, asks whether Unoccupied Aerial Vehicle (UAV) technologies could be employed to record the status of lhuq’us as a baseline for monitoring. Two study sites in the Salish sea were surveyed using UAV techniques: ȾEL,IȽĆ and St’utl’qulus. The overall accuracies of the UAV imagery classifications and the particular accuracies of the class representing lhuq’us suggest that UAV technologies paired with Google Earth Engine (GEE) object based image analysis (OBIA) methodologies can effectively detect lhuq’us. There are serious concerns and cultural values and practices deeply interconnected with culturally important species like lhuq’us. Through holding these concerns and values side by side with systematic observation and analyses maps and materials were created which communities can use to assert their rights, enact their own monitoring of territories and re-prioritize environmental decision-making done by federal, provincial, and municipal management agencies.

To read more, visit UVicSpace

*UVic’s open access repository, UVicspace, makes worldwide knowledge mobilization possible. Through this platform, researchers at any institution have access to dissertations (and theses and graduate projects) published by our graduate students. This also makes works available to the interested layperson, who may be engaged in learning more about the research being done at UVic, with no paywall. UVic’s graduate students are doing valuable research every day – but sometimes it goes unsung. Our goal with this series is to shine a light on our students by featuring excellence, one achievement at a time.

The UVic LIbraries ePublishing Services Team

Featured Dissertation: Physical Controls on Extremes of Oceanic Carbon and Oxygen in Coastal Waters

by Zelalem M. Engida

UVic News recently announced that “Times Higher Education released its 2020 world university rankings by subject for physical sciences and psychology, placing UVic programs in these areas among the Top 200 around the globe”. To celebrate, we would like to feature some of our graduate research associated with those disciplines.

Today, we feature research in Earth and Ocean Sciences: https://dspace.library.uvic.ca/handle/1828/11209

Abstract (excerpt):

The west coast of Vancouver Island is located at the northern end of the California Current System, one of the world’s Eastern Boundary Current Systems. The region is characterized by wind driven coastal upwelling and high productivity, which supports fisheries and related industries. Climate change poses a challenge to these industries by increasing seawater acidity and decreasing dissolved oxygen levels, which are two of the multi-stressors of marine organisms. This thesis explores the relative importance of different physical and biological mechanisms that affect oxygen and carbon extremes in the region.
(…)
This thesis has identified relative locations within the study domain of priority for effective monitoring of dissolved oxygen and carbon extremes in the study region. Finally, joint DIC- O2 extreme events are found to be common at the end of the summer. This information can be used to inform adaptation and mitigation plans aimed at protecting the economic and bequest value of the coast from potential hazards associated with oxygen and carbon extremes.

To read more, visit UVicSpace https://dspace.library.uvic.ca/handle/1828/11209

*UVic’s open access repository, UVicspace, makes worldwide knowledge mobilization possible. Through this platform, researchers at any institution have access to dissertations (and theses and graduate projects) published by our graduate students. This also makes works available to the interested layperson, who may be engaged in learning more about the research being done at UVic, with no paywall. UVic’s graduate students are doing valuable research every day – but sometimes it goes unsung. Our goal with this series is to shine a light on our students by featuring excellence, one achievement at a time.

The UVic LIbraries ePublishing Services Team

Featured Thesis: Predicting retention of diluted bitumen in marine shoreline sediments, Southeastern Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

This 2017 M.Sc. in Geography thesis discusses diluted bitumen (dilbit) shoreline retention for southeastern Vancouver Island, British Columbia

 

by Lee Allen Sean Britton

Abstract:

Canada has become increasingly economically dependent on the exportation of bitumen to trans-oceanic international markets. As the export of Alberta bitumen from ports located in British Columbia increases, oil spill response and readiness measures become increasingly important. Although the frequency of ship-source oil spills has dramatically declined over the past several decades, they remain environmentally devastating when they occur. In the event of a marine spill, great lengths of shoreline are at risk of being contaminated. Once ashore, oil can persist for decades if shoreline hydraulic conditions are correct and remediation does not occur. Most commonly transported oils (e.g., fuel oils, Bunker C, crude oil, etc.) have been thoroughly studied, and their fate and behaviour in the event of a marine spill is well understood. In contrast, because diluted bitumen has been historically traded in relatively low quantities and has almost no spill history, there is a sizable knowledge gap regarding its effects and behaviour in both the marine environment and on coastal shorelines. The intent of this thesis was to develop a classification scheme to identify marine shorelines of high and low diluted bitumen (dilbit) retention for southeastern Vancouver Island, British Columbia. This study builds upon the outcome of former laboratory bench top dilbit and sediment research known as Bitumen Experiments (Bit_Ex). Bit_Ex investigated dilbit penetration and retention in six engineered sediment classifications ranging from coarse sand to very large pebble in accordance with the Wentworth Classification scheme. This research used Bit_Ex findings to predict dilbit retention in poorly sorted in-situ beach sediments found on shorelines representative of the southern coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. Field and laboratory measurements were conducted to document the occurrence of in-situ shoreline sediments and hydraulic conditions and were used to predict dilbit retention by comparing such characteristics between Bit_Ex and unconsolidated in-situ beach sediments. Saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks) was measured using a double-ring constant-head infiltrometer. Measured Ks values were then compared to predicted Ks values generated by five semi-empirical Ks equations. A modified version of the Hazen Approximation was selected as the most appropriate. Using measured and calculated metrics, sediments were grouped as having either low or high dilbit retention. When sediments were analysed as homogenous samples, the experimental results suggested two of ten shorelines were composed of a combination of low and high retention sections, while the remaining eight sites were of low retention. Upon the isolation of coarse surface strata, results indicated two shorelines were entirely veneered with high retention sediments, and four shorelines were a combination of high and low retention. The residual four shorelines were found to be entirely composed of low retention sediments. The results illuminate the importance of shoreline stratification when predicting shoreline oil retention. This characteristic is a factor that current shoreline oil retention mapping techniques do not adequately consider. Additionally, the findings suggest that while sediments indicative of retaining weathered dilbit are relatively uncommon within Juan de Fuca and Harro Straits, high retention unweathered dilbit sediments are more common.

To read more, visit UVicSpace https://dspace.library.uvic.ca/handle/1828/8917

*UVic’s open access repository, UVicspace, makes worldwide knowledge mobilization possible. Through this platform, researchers at any institution have access to dissertations (and theses and graduate projects) published by our graduate students. This also makes works available to the interested layperson, who may be engaged in learning more about the research being done at UVic, with no paywall. UVic’s graduate students are doing valuable research every day – but sometimes it goes unsung. Our goal with this series is to shine a light on our students by featuring excellence, one achievement at a time.

The UVic LIbraries ePublishing Services Team