Environmental Sustainability Research Centre
Evaluating and Visualizing Drivers of Coastline Change: A Lake Ontario Case StudyEnvironmental and climatic changes are disproportionately felt in coastal communities, where drivers of coastline change are complicated with continued development. This study analyzed the coastline change of Lake Ontario in the Town of Lincoln, Ontario, Canada, using a mixed-methods two-phased approach that is novel to the study area. The first phase of the methodology included a coastline change analysis using historical aerial photographs in a geographic information system to identify the most vulnerable sections of the coastline. To better understand the calculated changes, the second phase explored the roles of select climatic and non-climatic drivers of coastline change, such as historic storms and land use changes. The results indicated that four main areas of Lincoln’s coast were more vulnerable, with rates of erosion between 0.32 and 0.66 m/yr between 1934 and 2018. Sections of coastline that had less erosion included those that were more heavily vegetated, attempted a cooperative protection approach, or utilized revetment stones in areas without steep banks. This methodology can help municipalities understand coastline change in a more holistic way to increase their adaptive capacity and allows for the creation of useful visualizations that better communicate to residents and town staff the level of vulnerability of their coasts.
Connecting Memories with Nature: Opportunities for Residents of Long-Term Care Facilities in Mid-Sized CitiesCanada, like other Western countries, is facing the challenge of providing care for an increasingly large elderly population. Indeed data suggest that the Canadian elderly population will double by 2036 (Statistics Canada 2006). In Ontario, this means that the population of people over 65 years old may increase from 1.8 million in 2009 (i.e., 13.7% of the population) to 4.2 million or 23.4% by 2036 (Ontario 2009). Society encourages elderly people to stay in their homes for as long as they can, but this often becomes impossible unless constant personal care can be provided by a parent or personal caretaker. The current economic and time constraints facing children of elderly people make it difficult for them to be able to consider full-time care of an elderly parent. In most cases, and especially for individuals suffering from dementia, placement in a long-term care (LTC) facility is often the only solution. While residents in some of these facilities may have gradual levels of independencies, in many of them residents have limited mobility. Residents in LTC facilities have a decreased sense of well-being compared to their counterparts living in other types of housing, such as their own homes or retirement facilities (Cummings 2002).