Natural Processes for Restoration of Drastically Disturbed Sites course

  • End Date: November 06, 2012
  • City: Cranbrook, BC
  • Instructor: David Polster


Course description

Natural processes have been “reclaiming” natural disturbances since the beginnings of time.  This one day workshop will explore how these natural processes can be applied to the reclamation of roads, borrow pits and other sites that humans have disturbed.  It is clear that traditional reclamation programs are failing to generate the ecological goods and services that were lost during the disturbance of the site.  Providing erosion control is a key element in the development of effective restoration programs.  We will look at the processes of erosion and how natural systems solve erosion problems.  Similarly, many disturbed sites lack nutrients for plant growth or the capacity to cycle the nutrients that are available.  We will explore the natural processes that provide nutrients and nutrient cycling capacity to ecosystems and how these can be re-established on disturbed sites.  In many cases the systems and processes that naturally reclaim disturbed sites can be established on anthropogenic disturbances easily and at a lower cost than using traditional reclamation techniques.

Our instructor

Polster teaching

The course was taught by David Polster.

Mr. Polster has been involved in the reclamation of severely disturbed sites for over 35 years.  He was president of the Canadian Land Reclamation Association (3 terms) and is on the board of the Society for Ecological Restoration (BC Chapter and International board).  He was recently awarded the John Rieger Award for his work with SER and in restoration. He is the alternate mining representative on the board of the BC Invasive Species Council.  Dave is well known for his work in the use of soil bioengineering treatments to solve difficult reclamation problems.  He recently instructed a post-graduate certification program in designing for natural processes at the University of Victoria.  Dave can be reached at

In this photo David describes the collection and use of cuttings for soil bioengineering treatments.




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  • P.O. Box 2568
  • Revelstoke, British Columbia V0E 2S0
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