Sci-Tech North was honoured to be able to facilitate Dylan Kassian’s attendance at the 2009 Canada Wide Science Fair. Dylan, currently in Grade 7, has been participating in Regional Science Fairs since grade 3 and last year won the BC Hydro Power Smart award but was too young to be considered as a delegate to the Canada Wide Science Fair.
This year his whole goal was to qualify for the Canada Wide but Dylan says, “I really wanted my project to be meaningful for people around here so I chose a topic that is a local issue: Site C.” Site C is a dam and generating station project proposed for the Peace River which would create a 5,300 hectare (20.5 sq miles) reservoir. His project was a study of CO2 absorption titled: “Weather or Not: Site CO2” and would determine what the outcomes would be with the creation of a lake in place of a river. Would the reservoir absorb CO2 faster than the river? What would happen to PH levels as a result of absorption? The theory that it would become more acidic as is happening with our oceans was dispelled – the ‘lake’ would become more base or alkaline meaning it would not have a major adverse effect on plant life.
Sci-Tech North is a non profit society based in Fort St John serving the Peace-Liard Stikine. We work towards ensuring that the youth of our region will have opportunities to experience science and technology and have the confidence to pursue further science and technology related learning. Our sponsorship celebrates the incredible scientific research being done by Canadian youth. Over 25,000 young Canadians enter local and regional science fairs each year. Of these competitors, only about 450 advance to the Canada Wide Science Fair; their projects have been known to challenge accepted scientific knowledge.
Dylan’s project won the Federation of British Columbia Naturalists Award; the Enviro-Expo Award; and first place in the Junior Grade 7 & 8 Awards at the Regional Science Fair; as well as the sponsorship from Sci-Tech North to the Canada Wide Science Fair where he won the Bronze Medal in Junior Earth and Environmental Science.
Great science does not require a lab and a white coated scientist; it is just as likely to come from some kid in a farm field. Science surrounds us. It is evident in everything from cell phones and satellite systems to work boots and scuba gear. Youth, with their inquiring minds and unbiased outlooks, ask new questions, visionary questions – questions to which they will seek answers. And we will continue to be amazed at the quality of scientific research being done by students in our region. Congratulations Dylan.