chapter 5 geo2010.docx

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Geography 2010A/B
Suzanne Greaves

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Ontario Within Canada Gross Domestic Product (GDP): An estimate of the total value of all materials, food, goods and services provided by a country or provinces in a particular year  Ontario, within Canada has fallen well below the national average in population growth  Only the inflow of international migrants has allowed Ontario to have a positive population growth rate What happened to the strong man of confederation?  Ontario was caught in a Canada-wide decline in manufacturing and forestry  The sudden and unexpected global economic collapse of 2008-2009 put a serious dent in Ontario’s economic performance, especially in its automobile manufacturing and parts industries  The days of an “open border” are gone, making cross border manufacturing more costly and less attractive for locating new plants in Ontario  The western provinces have outpaced the economic and population growth of Ontario  The US policy of “buy America” left Ontario’s manufacturers unable to participate in the massive US stimulus spending program of 2009-2010 Buy America: in an effort to stimulate the US economy, Washington introduced the “buy America” provision, which means that for its economic stimulus package, priority is given to the US iron, steel and other manufactured good for use in public works and building projects supported with taxpayers recovery money Dutch Disease: a theory describing the apparent relationship within a country between its expanding energy resource sector and a subsequent decline in the manufacturing sector. In 1997, the term first appeared in The Economist to describe the phenomenon of a declining manufacturing sector in the Netherlands, which at the same time was enjoying increased revenues from the export of its natural gas but also seeing its exchange rate with other countries increasing Historically, there are four natural resources 1. Agriculture 2. Forests 3. Minerals 4. Water And they have spurred Ontario’s economic development, and processing of these products created a strong industrial base, which in turn accounts for Ontario’s rapid population growth Great lakes provided low cost water transportation, and Niagara Falls provides low cost hydroelectric power Today, Ontario faces 3 challenges: 1. Energy: Ontario requires more energy and the cost of energy has risen rapidly 2. Manufacturing sector: right now is coping with fierce competition in the Canadian market but also from other countries where labour costs are lower 3. Forest industry: affects primarily Northern Ontario—for the past 10 years this sector has only seen bad times Ontario, with nearly 13 million people, has by far the largest population of the six regions  Sends more representatives to the House of Commons than any other province  Ontario is interested in having Ottawa pursue trade policies with the US that support its industrial base, facilitate the ease of border crossing for goods and promote the well being of its manufacturing industry, especially the automotive sector  Ontario will remain Canada’s industrial region for the foreseeable future Net Interprovincial Migration: annual estimates of net migration by provinces and territories determined by the number of people arriving and leaving each province and territory as permanent residents; based on Child Tax Benefit data and income tax records  Currently based on these figures, it appears although Western Canada and BC are favored  They indicate a continuation of the shift of economic and demographic power westward due more to the relatively weaker demographic and economic performances of Quebec and Atlantic Canada Ontario’s Physical Geography  Extending over Ontario are three of Canada’s physiographic regions: o Great Lakes St. Lawrence Lowlands o Canadian Shield o Hudson Bay lowland  Three of the country’s climate zones: o Arctic o Subarctic o Great Lakes—St. Lawrence  The central location within Canada and its close proximity to the industrial heartland of the US have facilitated Ontario’s economic development o Due to this reason, Ontario is divided into two subcategories  Northern and Southern Ontario o Northern Ontario has the characteristics of a resource hinterland  Climate, soils, and physiographic combine to limit agriculture in northern Ontario  The Ontario sector of the Canadian Shield has relatively low elevations, limiting the opportunity for hydroelectric power developments  This sub-region does have vast forests, superb scenery, and extensive mineral wealth  The Hudson Bay Lowland consists of a poorly drained plain associated with muskeg and permafrost  Few opportunities for resource development exist and it remains an area for hunting and trapping; inhabited mainly by Cree Indians  As a resource hinterland, northern Ontario is limited economically to the Canadian Shield almost entirely and its development is dependent on forestry, mining and tourism o Southern Ontario is the epitome of an agricultural-industrial core  Had Canada’s longest growing season  The greatest amount of precipitation occur in the lee of the Great Lakes, where winter snowfall is particularly heavy  Southern Ontario is the most favored physical area in Canada  The vast majority of the province’s population (nearly 12 million—93%) live in southern Ontario Climate and Agriculture  Southern Ontario’s climate is dominated by its long, warm summer that extends from May to September  Tropical air masses that originate in the Gulf of Mexico extend over this area resulting in hot and humid weather  Winter takes hold 3-4 months from mid November to March when occasional invasion of Arctic air masses bring exceptionally cold weather (cold sunny days and frigid nights)  Southern Ontario has over half of the highest quality agricultural land (class 1) in Canada  Grain farming and cattle ranching dominate in Western Canada, while a much more diversified use of agricultural land prevails in southern Ontario, where corn, barley and winter wheat are important crops along with highly specialized ones such as tobacco and vegetables  Corn and grain often serve food for the hog, dairy and beef livestock farms that operate in Ontario  There are 3 highly specialized agricultural zone west of Toronto o The Essex-Kent vegetable area o Norfolk Tobacco Belt o Niagara Fruit Belt  Valuable land is now part of the urban landscape The Niagara Fruit Belt  Lies on the narrow Ontario plan that extends from Hamilton to Niagara on the lake  Ontario plain has fertile, sandy soils suitable for most types of agriculture  Lake Ontario marks it northern limit while the Niagara escarpment forms its southern edge  Factors that offset the threat of frost include: o Air drainage from the Niagara escarpment to Lake Ontario reduces the danger of both spring and fall frosts o The water of lake Ontario is warm in autumn and its proximity to the Niagara Fruit Belt helps to moderate advancing cold air masses o In early spring, the cool waters of lake Ontario keeps air temperature low, thereby delaying the opening of fruit blossoms until late spring when the risk of frost is much lower Environmental Challenges  Ontario faces two major environmental challenges—air pollution and water pollution  The solution to urban garbage disposal lies in research to find different means of converting garbage into energy  Smog becomes a serious health hazard in the summer months when high temperatures and air inversions combine to keep the smog hanging over the city in a yellow brown haze  A study by the Ontario medical Association estimated that illnesses caused by smog cost Ontario more than 1 billion a year in hospital admissions, emergency room visits and absenteeism  More air pollution comes from automobile exhaust and coal-burning thermoelectric plants  More than 35 million people (many of whom live in large urban cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Toronto and Montreal) depend on the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence for water supply and sewage disposal  Pollution from the runoff from agriculture lands, the waste from cities, and toxic discharge from industry continue to affect the Great Lakes  The Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement first singed in 1972 and renewed in 1978 expressed the commitment of the two countries to restore and maintain the chemical, physical and integrity of the Great Lakes basin  Growing levels of phosphorus (primarily from waste water) are contributing to “green slime”; a dead zone where only toxic organisms can survive Air pollution is any chemical, physical or biological agent that modifies the natural characteristics of the atmosphere Sustainable Development Technology Canada is a federation created by the Canadian government to support the development and demonstration of clean technologies—solution that address issue of clean air, greenhouse gases, clean water, clean soil to deliver environmental, economic and health benefits to Canadians Ontario’s Historical Geography  In less than 100 years, the natural forest landscape of Ontario was transformed into a British agricultural economy  Since confederation, the borders of Ontario have been extended three times, greatly increasing the geographic size of the province, but not its agricultural lands  Ontario has reached its present geographic size of 1 million km^2 Birth of an Industrial Core  Most manufacturing activities depended on water power so most were located near a stream or river The consequences of confederation and protective tariffs for Ontario were:  The creation of a Canadian market for Ontario products  An increase in size of the more successful manufacturing companies  The growth of an industrial workforce in Ontario Factors contributing to Ontario’s geographic advantage:  Close to America’s manufacturing belt  Trade restriction on the foreign manufactured goods  Access by Americans brand plants in Canada to lower tariffs for Canadian made products in the British Empire Specific Land Claims: claims made by treaty Indians to rectify shortcomings in the original treaty agreement with a band or that seek to redress failure on part of the Federal government to meet the terms of the treaty. Many of these have involved the unilateral alienation of reserve land by the government Ontario Today:  The sheer size of Ontario’s economy and population keeps the centre anchored in Ontario  The long term statistical indicators of the powerful position of Ontario within confederation include: o Largest economy and population of the six regions o Average personal income well above the national average o Greatest cluster of major cities, universities and technology centers of any region o Elects more members of parliament than any other region o Central location within North America further facilitated by its hub position in the east-west and north-south transportation systems  Labor is critical because bright workers are the key to the knowledge based industry o Canadian universities form the heart of such innovation, research connected companies supply the added component o Ontario in the short run must deal with several economic obstacles:  Energy shortage  Restructuring of its automotive industry  Management of its forestry  Thickening of the border with the US energy Ontario Advantage: Trade with the US  Ontario is geographically positioned to engage in trade, both domestically and internationally  The FTA and then NAFTA, along with Ontario’s geographic location within North America have allowed the region’s business firms to penetrate the huge US market and that has lead to greater integration into the North American economy 
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