Regional science fair winner to participate in national study

WHITEHORSE – What impact do you have on your own drinking water? James Storey, local ninth-grader, is going to help find out at the Canada-Wide Science Fair being held in Regina this week.
Storey is one of three Yukon youth taking part in a national citizen project that samples water isotopes from communities across Canada. The opportunity to participate in the study came as part of his win at the 30th Annual Yukon/Stikine Regional Science Fair at Yukon College back in February.

For Storey, it’s the second regional win in as many years.

In 2016, his project, Camping Stove Efficiency For Summertime Alpine Hiking, placed, and he traveled to the Canada-Wide Science Fair in Montreal. This year, his project, A Lasting Bond, tested various types of glue for their torsional, tensile and shear strengths. Storey, who goes to F.H. Collins, designed and built two apparatuses to gauge this.

Storey is currently in Regina from May 14 to 20. His research project is on display, but he has also traveled with his Whitehorse home water samples.

According to Heather Haig, one of the water project organizers, studying water from across the country will “give participants a glimpse into the power of using water isotopes to study how humans affect hydrological systems.”

She said many communities in Canada are disconnected from drinking water. This study will allow researchers to compare the CWSF tap water isotope map to pre-existing isotopic maps of precipitation, allowing researchers to answer questions such as: are we drinking rain or snow, and are our drinking water resources vulnerable to changes in water availability expected due to climate change?

Storey is looking forward to representing Yukon in this study, and at the nationals.

“I had a lot of fun at the Fair last year and I’m very happy to be going again,” said Storey, who wants to pursue a career in the field of science, math, or engineering. “There are a lot of great activities that week and I’m really excited to present my project.” 

Science Adventures at Yukon College is a proud member of Actua, providing training, resources and support to its national network of members located at universities and colleges across Canada in the delivery of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education outreach programming.