TOTAL Human Footprint:
The South Saskatchewan Region encompasses nearly 84,000 km2 (13% of the province) in southern Alberta. The Grassland Natural Region is the largest ecosystem, representing 78% of the landbase; the Rocky Mountain (15%), Foothills (2%), and Parkland (5%) Natural Regions all cover much smaller areas. The South Saskatchewan region has been transformed over the past century because of agricultural production and human settlement. Despite this conversion, large areas of native grassland still remain. Other important industries in the region include: energy development, forestry, and tourism and recreation. Human footprint status and trend is summarized for the South Saskatchewan Region.
As of 2016, human footprint occupied 51.47% of the South Saskatchewan Region. Covering 42.49% of the region, agriculture was the dominant human footprint. The remaining human footprint types in decreasing order of area occupied include: transportation (2.68%), energy (2.15%), urban (1.95%), forestry (1.23%), and human-created waterbodies (0.98%).
|Human Footprint Type||Area (km2)||Area (%)|
|Total Human Footprint||43,118||51.5|
|Human-created Water Bodies||821||1.0|
FIGURE: Summary of percentage cover of total human footprint broken down by human footprint category in the South Saskatchewan Region, circa 2016.