Environment and Economy: Essays on the Human Geography of Alberta


180 pages
Contains Illustrations, Bibliography
ISBN 0-88864-042-0





Edited by B.M. Barr and P.J. Smith
Reviewed by Susan Perks

Susan Perks, formerly a teacher and librarian, is a travel agent in
Thompson, Manitoba.


Sixty per cent of Albertans live in just two centres, Edmonton and Calgary. This book attempts to explain how and why the population spread is varied. It is written for the layman interested in Alberta’s economic landscape. Technical language is kept to a minimum, and special terms are adequately defined in the introduction. The ten essays in the book explore the factors influencing the relations between man and his physical environment.

Part I is entitled “People, Time, and Space”; its three essays are concerned with changes in the settlement system and population characteristics, through both time and space. Part II, “Environment, Land, and Resources,” explores the meaning of the natural environment for people, and the geographic variations in the problems and dilemmas caused by human usage of these natural resources. Part III, “The Industrial-Urban Economy,” examines the urban-based economic activities of Alberta, and the transportation and communication facilities upon which they depend.

This collection of essays achieves its purpose of introducing major characteristics of Alberta’s economic geography to a wide audience. Each essay has a short introduction. The emphasis is on general insights and broad interpretations, and concepts are very well defined. The cartography is exceptionally clear, figures are placed appropriately near the corresponding pages, and the typesetting is well done. Unfortunately, it lacks an index.


“Environment and Economy: Essays on the Human Geography of Alberta,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 23, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/37733.