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Athabasca River Basin Research Institute 14-March-2012 David Hill, Executive Director, Water Resources.

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Presentation on theme: "Athabasca River Basin Research Institute 14-March-2012 David Hill, Executive Director, Water Resources."— Presentation transcript:

1 Athabasca River Basin Research Institute 14-March-2012 David Hill, Executive Director, Water Resources

2 Water is... Water is... – LIFE... all living things need water – Personal, Emotional – Economic, Political – Embedded in everything we do and everything we need (want) – In most instances there is no replacement for it!

3 Goals & Outcomes … Safe, secure drinking water supply Safe, secure drinking water supply Healthy aquatic ecosystems Healthy aquatic ecosystems Reliable, quality water supplies for a sustainable economy Reliable, quality water supplies for a sustainable economy Key Directions & Actions … Knowledge and research Knowledge and research Partnerships Partnerships Water conservation Water conservation

4 Diverse landscape... Diverse landscape... – Alpine – Boreal forests – Parkland – Semi-arid Diverse water uses... Diverse water uses... – Irrigation (71%) – Commercial & Industrial (15%) – Cities, Towns (5%) – Water Management (4%) – Habitat (2%) – Agriculture (2%) – Other (1%) Alberta has 2.2% of Canadas freshwater. 80% of the water is in the north, while 80% of the population is in the south.

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6 Fund and coordinate water research in support of Water for Life (2003, 2008) and Albertas Water Research Strategy (2006) Fund and coordinate water research in support of Water for Life (2003, 2008) and Albertas Water Research Strategy (2006) Serve as a knowledge broker... provide analysis and context about water research to decision and policy makers, water practitioners, and ensure the information is understandable, relevant and accessible Serve as a knowledge broker... provide analysis and context about water research to decision and policy makers, water practitioners, and ensure the information is understandable, relevant and accessible Employ a global view... seek out the best research, information & knowledge regionally, provincially, nationally and internationally Employ a global view... seek out the best research, information & knowledge regionally, provincially, nationally and internationally Where ideas flow... Where ideas flow...

7 VISION: Alberta is globally recognized as a leader in managing its water resources for people, the environment and the economy. Water Security, Risk & Vulnerability Watershed Stewardship & Ecosystem Management Conservation, Efficiency & Productivity of Water Use MISSION: To promote an integrated and collaborative water research and innovation system focused on providing science and evidencebased analysis and technologies to inform decisions and support actions needed for effective, adaptive and sustainable water management.

8 Started operations in October 2007, with $30 million investment by Alberta, leveraged to $50 million Started operations in October 2007, with $30 million investment by Alberta, leveraged to $50 million Attracted Dr. Alexander (Sascha) J. B. Zehnder as Scientific Advisor [Global Reach] Attracted Dr. Alexander (Sascha) J. B. Zehnder as Scientific Advisor [Global Reach] More than 35 initiatives completed or underway More than 35 initiatives completed or underway Almost 50% of portfolio with research teams at Alberta universities & more than 10 international Almost 50% of portfolio with research teams at Alberta universities & more than 10 international 30% focussed on water issues in oil sands region 30% focussed on water issues in oil sands region 10% of portfolio on knowledge mobilization * 10% of portfolio on knowledge mobilization *

9 Wetland Health: Challenges and Opportunities in Implementing Albertas Wetland Policy Wetland Health: Challenges and Opportunities in Implementing Albertas Wetland Policy Suzanne Bayley, Lee Foote, Naomi Krogman, University of Alberta; Irena Creed, University of Western Ontario Suzanne Bayley, Lee Foote, Naomi Krogman, University of Alberta; Irena Creed, University of Western Ontario Bring together leading natural and social science disciplines Bring together leading natural and social science disciplines Develop a pragmatic sciencebased approach to wetland classification Develop a pragmatic sciencebased approach to wetland classification Developing new tools to assess wetland function and wetland value Developing new tools to assess wetland function and wetland value Support decisions made by governments (provincial & local) in responding to developments that may impact wetlands Support decisions made by governments (provincial & local) in responding to developments that may impact wetlands

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11 Exceptional = Never Good = 10 Fair =5 Poor =3

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13 Compliance ( PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT & P ROPONENT ) Approvals ( PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT ) Site Planning (P ROPONENT & L OCAL G OVERNMENT ) Compensation Plan & Compensation Site Selection Monitoring of permit conditions Calculation of compensation ratios Standardized Wetland Assessment & Scoring Regional Planning ( PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT & RELEVANT STAKEHOLDERS ) Wetland Inventory R EGIONAL M APPING P RODUCTS Exceptional Wetlands High Value Wetlands Restoration Potential Performance of Compensation Sites Municipal Policy/Bylaws Density Bonuses, TDC Approval Modification & Denials Priority Setting (ecological/social/economic metrics) Enforcement Remote monitoring of losses through updated inventories Improving Outcomes

14 The Dynamics of Albertas Water Supplies The Dynamics of Albertas Water Supplies Alexander Zehnder, David Hill, AI-EES; Jon Fennell [Project Manager], Worley Parsons Ltd., Shawn Marshal, University of Calgary; Stefan Kienzle, University of Lethbridge; Jungou Lui, Beijing Forestry University (China); Karim Abbaspour, EAWAG (Switzerland), Tara Hadler, University of Basel (Switzerland) Alexander Zehnder, David Hill, AI-EES; Jon Fennell [Project Manager], Worley Parsons Ltd., Shawn Marshal, University of Calgary; Stefan Kienzle, University of Lethbridge; Jungou Lui, Beijing Forestry University (China); Karim Abbaspour, EAWAG (Switzerland), Tara Hadler, University of Basel (Switzerland) How much water is there? How much water is there? Where is it? Where is it? When is it? When is it? How is it used? How is it used? What are the risks and vulnerabilities? What are the risks and vulnerabilities?

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18 174 to 320 billion m 3 1,225 to 1,637 billion m 3 30 to 128 billion m 3

19 174 to 320 billion m 3 1,225 to 1,637 billion m 3 30 to 128 billion m 3 Calibration to stream gauging stations

20 Storage volume: Pore volume:16 to 55 billion m 3 <1 to 2 billion m 3 6 to 1,526 billion m 3 <1 to 4 billion m to 5,620 billion m 3 6 to 210 billion m 3 Alluvial aquifers Bedrock aquifersBuried channels

21 Water Security, Risk & Vulnerability Water Security, Risk & Vulnerability Small and Cluster Systems for Water Treatment and Wastewater Treatment, $300K over 2 years [w/ AEW, AMA, AAMDC, AUMA] Small and Cluster Systems for Water Treatment and Wastewater Treatment, $300K over 2 years [w/ AEW, AMA, AAMDC, AUMA] AB-Netherlands Groundwater Initiative, $240K over 18 months [50/50] [w/ AEW, AGS, Netherlands] AB-Netherlands Groundwater Initiative, $240K over 18 months [50/50] [w/ AEW, AGS, Netherlands] Conjunctive Surface Water and Groundwater Management, $600K over 4 years [w/ AEW, Okotoks, U of C, U of Waterloo] Conjunctive Surface Water and Groundwater Management, $600K over 4 years [w/ AEW, Okotoks, U of C, U of Waterloo]

22 Watershed Stewardship & Ecosystem Management Watershed Stewardship & Ecosystem Management Stakeholder-Led Integrated and Adaptive Watershed Management, $4.5 M over 4 years [CCEMC Funding, Phase I] [w/ AEW, SRD, AFRD, WPACs, Local Governments, Water Practitioners, U of L, U of C] Stakeholder-Led Integrated and Adaptive Watershed Management, $4.5 M over 4 years [CCEMC Funding, Phase I] [w/ AEW, SRD, AFRD, WPACs, Local Governments, Water Practitioners, U of L, U of C] Functional Environmental Flow Management, $1.2 M over 4 years [AEW, SRD, AFRD, WPACs, U of L, U of C] Functional Environmental Flow Management, $1.2 M over 4 years [AEW, SRD, AFRD, WPACs, U of L, U of C] Scoping Stage … Scoping Stage … Oil Sands Saline Wetland Marsh Demonstration Project Oil Sands Saline Wetland Marsh Demonstration Project Ecological Goods and Services Pilot [w/ AI-Bio] Ecological Goods and Services Pilot [w/ AI-Bio]

23 Advanced analytical tools and models developed with stakeholders Advanced analytical tools and models developed with stakeholders Leveraged existing models & data sets (e.g. WRMM, OASIS, Irrigation Demand Model, AESO electricity prices) Leveraged existing models & data sets (e.g. WRMM, OASIS, Irrigation Demand Model, AESO electricity prices) Operating logic set by experienced water managers & leading scientists Operating logic set by experienced water managers & leading scientists Results presented in user- defined performance measures Results presented in user- defined performance measures Scenarios challenged by stress tests Scenarios challenged by stress tests

24 Conservation, Efficiency & Productivity of Water Use Conservation, Efficiency & Productivity of Water Use Economic Analysis of Source Water Protection, $200K over 2 years [w/ AEW, SRD, AFRD, WPACs, Local Governments, U of A, U of Waterloo] Economic Analysis of Source Water Protection, $200K over 2 years [w/ AEW, SRD, AFRD, WPACs, Local Governments, U of A, U of Waterloo] Assessing Improvements in Water Use Efficiency and Productivity in Irrigated Agriculture $200K over 12 months [50/50] [w/ AFRD, AEW, SRD, Irrigation Districts] Assessing Improvements in Water Use Efficiency and Productivity in Irrigated Agriculture $200K over 12 months [50/50] [w/ AFRD, AEW, SRD, Irrigation Districts] Water-Food-Energy-Health [Environmental & Human] Nexus [scoping of initiatives underway] Water-Food-Energy-Health [Environmental & Human] Nexus [scoping of initiatives underway]

25 Regional water quantity & quality issues in the oil sands region; development of standards for return of water to the environment, wetlands as a feature of reclamation activities, regional water management & sharing opportunities Regional water quantity & quality issues in the oil sands region; development of standards for return of water to the environment, wetlands as a feature of reclamation activities, regional water management & sharing opportunities Water use & opportunities related to renewable energy & emerging fuels; alternate uses of produced water, integration with new economic opportunities Water use & opportunities related to renewable energy & emerging fuels; alternate uses of produced water, integration with new economic opportunities

26 Initiatives are consistent with strategic directions of government, industry and public – focus on Water for Life objectives & emerging Alberta Water Research & Innovation Strategy, Initiatives are consistent with strategic directions of government, industry and public – focus on Water for Life objectives & emerging Alberta Water Research & Innovation Strategy, Capitalizing on Alberta expertise in academia, industry and water practitioner community, Capitalizing on Alberta expertise in academia, industry and water practitioner community, Building science and adaptive capacity through initiatives with practical place-based and evidence supported outcomes, Building science and adaptive capacity through initiatives with practical place-based and evidence supported outcomes, Sharing lessons learned, practices, tools, provincially, nationally and internationally. Sharing lessons learned, practices, tools, provincially, nationally and internationally.


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