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  Home>> Professor Lynx Presents: Alberta 101

Professor Lynx Presents: Alberta 101

Welcome to Alberta 101, your link to the basics about the Province of Alberta! If you’ve never heard of Alberta before, then this page is for you! If you’ve lived in Alberta all your life and you’re feeling sentimental about it, then this page is for you as well. If you’ve lived in Alberta all your life, but you’ve never heard of Alberta before, then you might consider getting some professional help after you’ve studied all the fabulous tidbits on this page!

Alberta: What Is It?
Alberta is a province of the country of Canada. It is one of ten provinces and three territories making up the Canadian nation.
See map here.

Alberta: Where Is It?
Alberta is the province located second from the left on the Canadian map. In other words, it is located in Western Canada. The only province further west than Alberta is the Province of British Columbia. Alberta is also bordered by the Province of Saskatchewan in the east, and by the Northwest Territories in the north. In the south, it is bordered by the State of Montana from the United States of America. See map here.

How Did Alberta Get Its Name?
Alberta is named after Great Britain’s Princess Louise Caroline Alberta. She was the fourth daughter of Queen Victoria, and wife of Sir John Campbell, 9th Duke of Argyll and the Marquess of Lorne, who served as Governor General of Canada from 1878 to 1883. Alberta was not yet a province when it received its name, but a district of the Northwest Territories. Lake Louise, a popular tourist spot in Alberta, is also named after the Princess.

What Is Alberta’s Capital City?
The City of Edmonton, located in the north central portion of the province. Including Edmonton, Alberta has a total of 15 cities.

When Did Alberta Become A Province?
Alberta became a province on 1 September, 1905. It shares its birthday with the Province of Saskatchewan.

What Is the Provincial Motto?
Fortis et Liber (or “Strong and Free” for those who don’t speak Latin) Aside from a motto, Alberta has a number of official emblems. For more on these, click here.

How Big Is Alberta?
Alberta’ s total land area is 661,190 square kilometres, or 258,777 square miles. It makes up about 6.6 percent of Canada’s total land area.

What Time Zone is Alberta In?
Alberta is in the Rocky Mountain time zone, 7 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (or GMT).

How Many People Live In Alberta?
As of 1 September, 2004, Alberta has 3,066,257 residents. Of this total, 2,018,010 people live in cities. The top 3 cities in Alberta in terms of population are Calgary, with 933,495 residents, Edmonton, with 666,104 residents, and Red Deer with 75,923.

How Is Alberta Governed?
As a province of Canada, Alberta has representatives that hold seats in the House of Commons and the Senate in Ottawa, Ontario. Alberta is currently represented in the House of Commons by 26 elected Members of Parliament (or MPs) and in the Senate by 6 appointed Senators.

Provincially, Alberta’s government resides in the 83 seat Provincial Legislature, located in Edmonton. The government is led by a Premier, who is the leader of the political party that holds the most seats. As of 1 September, 2005, the Progressive Conservative Party in Alberta holds the most seats in the Alberta Legislature, with 62 seats. The leader of the Progressive Conservative Party, the Honorable Ralph Klein, is the Premier of the province.

Because Canada is a Constitutional Monarchy, the reigning King or Queen of England is the head of state, and leader of all the Provinces in Canada. The Queen’s representative in Alberta is the Lieutenant Governor, who while not being able to be involved in the political affairs of the Province (in order to be able to represent all Albertans at official ceremonies or affairs of state), is responsible for ensuring that the Province of Alberta has a legitimate government in office. As of January, 2005, Alberta’s Lieutenant Governor is Norman Kwong.

What Fuels the Alberta Economy?
What fuels the Alberta economy is…well… fuel. Natural resources, especially crude oil and natural gas, are the backbone of Alberta’s economy. 70 percent of Canada’s crude oil and 80 percent of Canada’s natural gas is produced in Alberta. As of the 2004 / 2005 fiscal year end, 34 percent of Alberta’s total revenues, or about $10 billion dollars, came from this sector of Alberta’s industry.

Other major industries in Alberta include Agriculture, Forestry, and Manufacturing.

Alberta’s strong economy carries a number of perks, including high employment (Alberta has the lowest unemployment rate in Canada at 3.9 percent) and no provincial sales tax (Alberta is the only province that does this)!

How’s the Weather In Alberta?
Alberta’s climate ranges from long, cold winters to mild, hot summers. And when someone welcomes you to “Sunny Alberta”, they mean it! Alberta has the highest number of sunny days of any province in Canada!

Sources:
Delainey, Gary, Marshall Jamieson, and Gerry Rasmussen, So, This Is Canada! Edmonton: Oz New Media Inc., 1995 revised edition 1996

Municipal Services Branch, Local Government Services Division, Alberta Municipal Affairs: 2004 Official Population List
URL: http://www.municipalaffairs.gov.ab.ca/ms/pdf/2004Pop.pdf

Legislative Assembly of Alberta: Elected Members of the Assembly URL: http://www.assembly.ab.ca/net/index.aspx?p=mla_home

Alberta Economic Development: Alberta, Canada – Alberta Economy
URL: http://www.alberta-canada.com/economy/

Heritage Community Foundation: Alberta Online Encyclopedia – Alberta’s Political History

Educationcanada.com – Canada Facts: Alberta: Quick Facts
URL: http://educationcanada.com/facts/index.phtml?sid=ab...

 

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