Alberta is one of the three Prairie provinces in Canada. Of the three, Alberta is the most populous and fastest-growing province. One of ten Canadian provinces, Alberta owes its name to Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, fourth daughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. In size, the province is as large as Texas or France, and in 2009, there were approximately 3.7 million people in Alberta. This province is economically advanced due to the presence of oil reserves. The health care system in this province is one of the most sophisticated and advanced, and a well-educated population and a growing economy contribute to this factor. Edmonton is the capital and is located in the centre of the province. Edmonton located near many refineries and oil fields in Western Canada.
Climatic and meteorological conditions
Alberta is a landlocked province with cold winters and hot summers. The climate in Alberta is largely dry and continental. The province is located in the western part of Canada and is therefore exposed to the cold arctic winds that blow from the north. The temperature also differs widely as the province stretches from north to south.
People and the Economy
Alberta’s rapidly growing economy attracts immigrants from around the world, especially from Europe and parts of Asia, as well as people from other provinces. Most of Alberta’s population is concentrated around the Calgary-Edmonton corridor, as most of northern Alberta is covered by dense forest. The southern half of the region is covered with short, mixed grasses, typical grassland vegetation. English is the mother tongue of most native speakers, followed by Chinese, German and French, among other languages.
Alberta’s thriving economy revolves around the petroleum industry and, to some extent, the technology and agricultural sectors. Alberta is the largest producer of crude oil, natural gas, synthetic crude, and other gas products in the country. The other major industries are telecommunications and forestry. The province’s GDP, as recorded in 2007, was much higher than the GDP of the other provinces.
Besides oil reserves, Alberta is well known for its tourist attractions. It is an ideal destination for hiking, skiing, and camping. In addition, internationally renowned shopping centres, sporting events and competitions, and outdoor festivals make this province a favourite destination for tourists. The province is an eclectic mix of natural and man-made attractions. The best known are Banff and Jasper National Parks, the Rocky Mountains, ski resorts, etc.
The start of summer brings a number of festivals to this province. The most popular is the Edmonton Fringe Festival, which is the second-largest in the world after that of Edinburgh. The Calgary Stampede is a highly visited festival and is linked to the raising of livestock. Folk music festivals in the province are just as popular, and the largest of these festivals in Canada is held in Calgary and Edmonton. Carifest is the second-largest Caribbean festival in the country after Caribana is hosted by Toronto.
Alberta has a parliamentary democracy and the Legislative Assembly has 83 members. Local school boards and municipal governments also operate in the province. The provincial government is led by the Progressive Conservative Party and the Prime Minister heads the state government.