Arctic Research at the University of Northern British Columbia

Established in 1994 with considerable public endorsement and enthusiasm, the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) has grown into one of Canada's premier small universities—just over 4,000 students attend the main campus in Prince George and four regional campuses throughout the province.

Today, UNBC offers 25 bachelor's programs, 14 master's programs, and 1 doctoral program in its two colleges—the College of Arts, Social, and Health Sciences and the College of Science and Management.

UNBC's internationally recognized academic and research programs prepare graduates in select areas of relevance to British Columbia, the north, and beyond. With over $100 million in total research funding to date, much of the university's research focuses on northern social, economic, environmental, and cultural issues. The university has established three priority research themes—natural resources and the environment; rural, remote, and northern health; and the sustainability of communities—which are all very relevant to residents of the north.

For more information, contact:

  • University of Northern British Columbia
  • Prince George Campus
  • 3333 University Way
  • Prince George, BC V2N 4Z9
  • Canada
  • 250-960-5555
  • sdery [at]


UNBC campuses offer access to river and forest research centers throughout the northern part of the province, which are ideally situated for both land and aquatic based research and university education. Other research infrastructure includes a national centre of aboriginal health, a forestry lab, and a landscape ecology research centre. UNBC strives to ensure that the community is part of the research process, information dissemination, and application of research results through partnerships with the private sector and public agencies—these alliances integrate research into management and keep research relevant and applicable to problems that require innovative solutions.

This section highlights recent research activities at UNBC focused on arctic and high latitude issues.

The UNBC Prince George campus. Photo by: Bob Clarke.

The UNBC Prince George campus, pictured from the southwest, is uniquely positioned to be a showpiece for renewable energy. All of the core campus buildings are connected to each other and to a power plant by a utility corridor, providing efficient distribution of heat and power. With $14.8 million in funding from the federal and provincial governments, the university is installing a biomass gasification system developed by Nexterra Energy, a BC company, which will provide heat to the connected buildings and offset an estimated 85% of current natural gas consumption. The project is expected to be implemented in 2009. Photo by: Bob Clarke.