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Date: July 16, 2008

Remote Sensing Cabability Receives Boost

Victoria, BC – The Government of Canada is strengthening Canada’s ability to develop and commercialize new technologies in the fields of resource and environmental management.

Federal funding of $120,000 was announced today by Ed Fast, Member of Parliament for Abbotsford, on behalf of the Honourable Rona Ambrose, President of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of Western Economic Diversification, toward the purchase and testing of state-of-the-art thermal imaging equipment.

“This exciting new project will help the University of Victoria maintain its position as a leader in the application of new technologies,” said MP Fast. “The Government of Canada is doing its part to ensure Canada is well positioned for success in the global knowledge-based economy.”

Funding will help the University of Victoria’s (UVic) British Columbia Centre for Applied Remote Sensing, Modelling and Simulation (BC CARMS), purchase a compact thermal imager and a compact hyperspectral imager to be integrated into an airborne imaging system. The small, lighter system will be attached onto helicopters to assess transmission tower and line conditions, and the nature and condition of vegetation in transmission corridors. Later applications will include environmental monitoring, forestry, agriculture, watershed management and pipeline corridor management.

“Through the use of advanced remote sensing, University of Victoria researchers have been keeping a close eye on the health of BC’s environment,” said Dr. Howard Brunt, the University of Victoria’s Vice-President of Research. “The funding announced today will allow UVic to expand its repertoire of remote-sensing equipment and maintain its pursuit of valuable data related to the current state of BC’s natural resources.”

BC CARMS is an applied research organization based at the University of Victoria. It brings together the needs of the BC remote sensing business community— particularly small-to-medium enterprises, several industry sectors, academic institutions and governments. The Centre has a primary focus on regional resource and environmental applications; but it also seeks to address the information and technology needs of security, emergency response, infrastructure and utilities. Many of these applications will present business opportunities for BC firms across Canada and internationally. Western Economic Diversification Canada is a department of the Government of Canada that works in partnership with the provinces, industry associations and communities to promote the development and diversification of the western economy as well as to represent the interests of the West in national decision-making.
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Media contacts:

Pierre Floréa (Director of Communications) Office of the President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of Western Economic Diversification at 613-943-1838 or Toll-Free Number: 1-888-338-WEST (9378)
Web Site: WD is online at http://www.wd-deo.gc.ca

Dr. Olaf Niemann (Director, BC CARMS) University of Victoria at 250-721-7329

Tara Sharpe (Communications Coordinator) University of Victoria Communications Services at
250-721-6248


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