Communities across mountainous areas face a range of hazard types. These hazards can pose significant risks to public safety, and yet are not well understood by the general public. Through our engagement with communities, we have found a need for resources to educate the public about geohazards. It has been shown that relatively simple actions can dramatically increase the odds of surviving a landslide, but this information is not readily accessible to the general public (Pollock and Wartman 2020). What began as a non-structural, risk-reduction solution for a small community on Vancouver Island has evolved into a BGC Squared project to create a portfolio of infographics for various geohazard scenarios. We designed infographics for debris flows, rockfalls, rockslides, and landslides using practical experience from BGCers who have worked in geohazard disaster response and feedback from world-class disaster and risk-communication experts. The 2-sided illustrations include a hazard definition on one side and practical actions on the other. These educational resources can be made available to any community or client that sees a need for them.
Location: British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Colorado, and New Brunswick
Climate change and its consequences are amongst the most critical challenges facing humanity in the 21st century. For today’s youth, these challenges will impact their careers and lives. Based on BGC-collected survey data, climate change remains an underrepresented learning objective in K-12 school curricula. As an applied earth science company, BGC is keenly aware of how climate change will impact our work and our communities and clients. We wanted to use this perspective and experience to provide meaningful climate change education and outreach to elementary and high school students.
What We Do
We aim to deliver high quality and engaging workshops that inform students on climate change themes and empower them with the knowledge to instill change. This is achieved through a combination of interactive presentations and inquiry-based activities that work through the following topics:
What is climate change?
Anthropogenic influence on the planet
Major climate change contributors
How we as individuals and as a community can help the planet
The content prepared for each topic has been purposefully made to integrate with the British Columbia k-12 school curriculum. We have worked and continue to work with BGC’s in-house climatologist to ensure that these workshops and content are consistent with current climate change research.
If you you’re an educator or parent and are interested in having us come to a classroom, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Location: Canada, United States, and United Kingdom Partners: Queen’s University, The University of British Columbia, Dalhousie University, Colorado School of Mines, and Durham University
BGC is supporting capstone engineering design projects at several universities across Canada as well as in the United States and United Kingdom. Engineering students, typically in their final year of their undergraduate degree, work collaboratively with BGC to solve an open-ended earth science problem. BGC contributes by providing a design project concept and regular mentorship throughout the year, and students benefit from the ability to participate in real-world engineering projects under the guidance of experienced mentors. Some of our projects include:
Open Pit Mine Design: Students create a geotechnical model from site investigation data and laboratory data, and use it to design the slope geometry for an open pit mine
Pipeline Geohazard Assessment: Students conduct a hazard assessment to determine potential geotechnical hazards affecting a pipeline, then complete a risk assessment to inform the “client” of a probability of failure.
Community Debris Flood Risk Assessment: Students complete a risk assessment for a proposed development on a debris flood fan then propose potential mitigation design options.
Mine Pre-Feasibility Tailings Design: Students use drill hole logs to complete a location selection analysis and create preliminary designs for a tailings storage facility and waste rock storage area.
Location: Vancouver, Canada Partners: Telus World of Science
Girls and STEAM is an annual event hosted by the Telus World of Science, in Vancouver, BC. This event inspires girls ages 11-13 to discover and pursue their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Design, and Math (STEAM) while learning from professional female mentors working in STEAM careers. In 2019, BGC supported this event by participating in workshop sessions under the theme of ‘mining done right’ with hands-on activities that included dam building and failure, 3D visualization using the Microsoft Hololens and 3D slope scanning, using a hand-held scanner. In 2020, BGC developed an educational video on landslides including how you can build one in your kitchen to learn about natural hazards. BGC’s participation in this event contributed to inspiring the leaders of the future to pursue careers in STEAM.