Dr. Penn is going to present her book “The Real Thing: A Natural History of Ian McTaggart Cowan” and share stories about Ian McTaggart Cowan who was known as the ‘father of Canadian ecology’. The Cowan Life and Legacy tour is sponsored by Sitka Foundation.
Cowan was a major researcher and advocate for the north. His biological inventory of the Peace Region prior to the WAC Bennett dam, one of the few biological inventories before the dam, later led to his advocacy for caution on large-scale hydro-electric projects starting in 1949. He spent a lot of time in Mackenzie looking at wildlife species from muskrats to caribou, which led to his friendship with Justice Tom Berger during the Mackenzie pipeline enquiry, and the establishment of guidelines for the first environmental assessment enquiries. He was a major advocate for subsistence lifestyles being a hunter himself and was respected by both scientists and keepers of traditional knowledge.
Book signing to follow.
The Natural Resources & Environmental Studies Institute (NRESi) at UNBC hosts a weekly lecture series at the Prince George campus. Anyone from the university or wider community with interest in the topic area is welcome to attend. Presentations are also made available to remote participants through Livestream. More information will be posted about these presentations as it becomes available.
Past NRESi colloquium presentations and special lectures can be viewed on our video archive, available here.