Arn Keeling

    Department Head, Department of Geography
    Memorial University of Newfoundland
    St. John's, NL
    A1B 3X9

    Office: SN-1041
    Tel: (709) 864-7417
    Fax: (709) 864-3119


Society, Knowledge & Values

Globalization, Economy & Resources

My research and publications focus on the environmental-historical geography of Western and Northern Canada. In recent years, my research has explored the historical and contemporary encounters of northern Indigenous communities with large-scale resource developments. I was co-investigator on a multi-site, multi-year SSHRC project examining abandoned mines in Northern Canada and I am leading a new SSHRC project investigating the historical-geography of pollution and contaminants in Northern Canada. I am also interested in historical-geographical approaches to environmental science, political ecology and environmental justice. I have previously written on topics including domestic and industrial pollution, environmental politics, and the history of the conservation/environmental movement. I also serve as co-editor of the journal, Historical Geography (2015-20).

Current and recent research projects:

Towards Environmentally Responsible Resource Extraction Network (NSERC TERRE-NET)

Northern Exposures: Science, Indigenous People and Northern Contaminants
Toxic Legacies: Community perspectives on Arsenic Pollution at Yellowknife's Giant Mine
Resources and Sustainable Development in the Arctic (ReSDA)
Abandoned Mines in Northern Canada
Adaptation, Industrial Development, and Arctic Communities (ArcticNet)


NSF Postdoctoral fellow (2005-06), Montana State University
SSHRC Postdoctoral fellow (2004-05), University of Saskatchewan
PhD (2004), University of British Columbia
MA (1999), University of British Columbia
BA Hons. (1996), Carleton University

General interest/popular articles:

  • Keeling, A. 2019 “Tracing the Trough: Exploring the history and future of mining in Quebec and Labrador (Parts 1 and 2),” The Otter/La Loutre research blog.(online)
  • Lepawsky, J., Liboiron, M., Keeling, A., and Mather, C. “Repair-scapes,” Continent 6,1 (2017): 56-61. (online)
  • Arn Keeling, "Abandoned Mines in Northern Canada" (photo essay), The Goose 12-13 (2013), 100-110. (online)
  • John Sandlos and Arn Keeling, "Zombie Mines and the (Over)burden of History," Solutions Journal 4, 3 (June 2013). (online)
  • Arn Keeling, “Atomic Outpost,” Canada’s History (June/July 2011), 28-35.

Scholarly publications: Please click here for Google Scholar

Some of the publications listed below are freely available online through the Memorial University Research Repository.

Monosky, M., and Keeling, A. 2021 “Planning for Social and Community-Engaged Closure: A comparison of mine closure plans from Canada's territorial and provincial North,” Journal of Environmental Management 277: 111324.

Beckett, C., Dowdell, E., Monosky, M., and Keeling, A. (2020). Integrating socio-economic objectives for mine closure and remediation into impact assessment in Canada. Report for the SSHRC Knowledge Synthesis Grant: Informing Best Practices in Environmental and Impact Assessment. Available at:

Sandlos, J., Keeling, A., Beckett, C., and Nicol, R., 2019 “There Is a Monster under the Ground: Commemorating the History of Arsenic Contamination at Giant Mine as a Warning to Future Generations,” Papers in Canadian History and Environment (PiCHE) no. 3:

Keeling, A. and Sandlos, J., “Never Just a Hole in the Ground,”in The Nature of Canada, edited by G. Wynn and C. Coates (Vancouver: UBC Press), pp. 203-221

Beckett, C., and Keeling, A. 2019. “Rethinking Remediation: Mine reclamation, environmental justice, and relations of care,” Local Environment 24,3: 216-230

Keeling, A., Sandlos, J., Boutet, J-S., Longley, H., and Dance, A. 2019. “Knowledge, Sustainability, and the Environmental Legacies of Resource Development in Northern Canada,” in Resources and Sustainable Development in the Arctic, eds. C. Southcott, F. Abele, D. Natcher, and B. Parlee. London: Routledge

Power, E., and Keeling, A. 2018. Cleaning up Cosmos: Satellite Debris, Radioactive Risk, and the Politics of Knowledge in Operation Morning Light. Northern Review 48: 81-109.

Cater, T., Carney, J., and Keeling A. 2018. Mining and Communities. Chapter in From Science to Policy in the Eastern Canadian Arctic: An Integrated Regional Impact Study (IRIS) of Climate Change and Modernization. ArcticNet, Quebec City.

Horowitz, L. S., Keeling, A., Lévesque, F., Rodon, T., Schott, S., & Thériault, S. (2018). Indigenous peoples’ relationships to large-scale mining in post/colonial contexts: Toward multidisciplinary comparative perspectives. Extractive Industries and Society, 5(3), 404–414.

Sandlos, J., and Keeling, A. 2017. The Giant Mine’s Long Shadow: Arsenic Pollution and Native People in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. In Mining North America: An Environmental History since 1522, edited by John R. McNeill and George Vrtis (University of California Press): 280-312.

Keeling, A., and Sandlos, J. (2017) “Ghost Towns and Zombie Mines: The Historical Dimensions of Mine Abandonment, Reclamation, and Redevelopment in the Canadian North,” in S. Bocking and B. Martin, eds., Ice Blink: Navigating Northern Environmental History (University of Calgary Press). (online)

2016 Sandlos, J., and Keeling, A. “Pollution, Local Activism, and the Politics of Development in the Canadian North,” RCC Perspectives 2016/4, pp. 25-32. (online)

Keeling, A., and Sandlos, J., eds. (2015) Mining and Communities in Northern Canada: History, Politics, and Memory (University of Calgary Press). Canadian History and Environment Series. (open access)

Sandlos, J., and Keeling, A. (2016) Toxic Legacies, Slow Violence, and Environmental Injustice at Giant Mine, Northwest Territories. Northern Review 42: 7-21 (online).

Keeling, A. (2016) Crying in the Wilderness: Roderick Haig-Brown, Conservation, and Environmental Justice. In Backcasts: A Global History of Fly Fishing and Conservation, eds. S. Snyder, B. Borgelt, and E. Tobey (University of Chicago Press), 237-251.

Sandlos, J., and Keeling, A. (2016) Introduction: Critical perspectives on extractive industries in Northern Canada. The Extractive Industries and Society 3,2: 265–268 (online)

Sandlos, J., and Keeling, A. (2016) Aboriginal Communities, Traditional Knowledge, and the Environmental Legacies of Extractive Development in Canada. The Extractive Industries and Society 3,2:278-287. (online)

Laliberte, N., Catungal, J.P., Castleden, H., Keeling, A., Momer, B, Nash, C. (2015) Teaching the Geographies of Canada: Reflections on Pedagogy, Curriculum and the Politics of Teaching and Learning. The Canadian Geographer, in press, doi: 10.1111/cag.12236

LeClerc, E., and Keeling, A. 2015 “From Cutlines to Traplines: Post-industrial land use at the Pine Point mine,” The Extractive Industries and Society 2 (January): 7-18. (online)

Boutet, J.S., Keeling, A., and Sandlos, J. 2015 Historical Perspectives on Mining and the Social Economy. In Northern Communities Working Together: The Social Economy of Canada's North, ed. C. Southcott (University of Toronto Press), 198-227.

Cater, T., and Keeling, A. 2013 ‘That’s Where Our Future Came From’: Mining, Landscape, and Memory in Rankin Inlet, Nunavut. Etudes/Inuit/Studies 37, 2: 59-82

Sandlos, J. and Keeling, A. 2012 Claiming the New North: Mining and Colonialism at the Pine Point Mine, Northwest Territories, Canada. Environment and History 18, 1(February): 5-34. (online)

Keeling, A. 2012 “Mining Waste” and “Sewage,” in C. Zimring (Ed.), SAGE Encyclopedia of Consumption and Waste (Sage), 553-556, 799-801

Keeling, A. 2012 “Mackenzie River,” in S.G. Beavis, M.L. Dougherty, & T. Gonzales (Eds.), The Berkshire Encyclopedia of Sustainability: Vol. 8. The Americas and Oceania: Assessing Sustainability (Berkshire Publishing), 138-140

Keeling, A. and Wynn, G. 2011'The Park is...A Mess': Development and Degradation in B.C.'s First Provincial Park. BC Studies 120 (Summer): 119-150. Special issue on B.C. Provincial Parks

Keeling, A. and Sandlos, J. 2011 Shooting the Archives: Document digitization for historical-geographical collaboration. History Compass 9, 5 (May): 423-432. (online)

Keeling, A. 2010 'Born in an Atomic Test Tube': Landscapes of cyclonic development at Uranium City, Saskatchewan. The Canadian Geographer 54, 2 (Summer), 228-252.

Keeling, A. and Sandlos, J. 2009 Environmental Justice Goes Underground? Historical Notes from Canada's Northern Mining Frontier. Environmental Justice 2, 3: 117-125. (online)

Keeling, A. 2008 "We Are Scholars": Using Teamwork and Problem-based Learning in a Canadian Regional Geography Course. MountainRise 4:3 (online).

Keeling, A. 2007 Charting Marine Pollution Science: Oceanography and Pollution Control on Canada’s Pacific Coast, 1938-1970. Journal of Historical Geography 33: 403-428 (online).

Keeling, A. 2005 Urban Waste Sinks as a Natural Resource: The Case of the Fraser River. Urban History Review/Revue d’Histoire Urbaine 34, pp. 58-70.


Department of Geography

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000