Environmentally responsible mining and hydrologic modelling get boost with NSERC and CRC grants

Monday, December 5, 2016

NSERC and CRC awardsMinister Chagger (far right) announces Waterloo grant winners, including Water Institute members David Blowes (second from right) and James R. Craig (third from right).

Water research was among several areas to receive substantial government support this past week from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and Canada Research Chairs (CRC) grants. The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Minister of Small Business and Tourism, and member of parliament for Waterloo, revealed seven University of Waterloo award recipients — including Water Institute members David Blowes and James R. Craig — Friday during a special announcement in the University’s Science Teaching Complex.

$5.5 million was awarded to David Blowes, who will lead a research network investigating new environmentally responsible mining initiatives, funded by the Strategic Partnership Grants program and administered by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). Blowes, a professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences and a Canada Research Chair in groundwater remediation, will lead 15 co-investigators from seven Canadian institutions in the TERRA-NET (Toward Environmentally Responsible Resource Extraction Network) project. The group aims to find new ways for mining companies to reduce their environmental impact and stabilize mine waste.

Mining is an important activity in Canada, but the benefits derived from mining are offset by serious environmental and social concerns,” said Blowes, speaking at the announcement. “Within Canada, there are currently about 90 operating mines, and more than 10,000 abandoned mines. Responsibility for most abandoned mines has reverted to the Crown.


Among Waterloo researchers to be named new or renewed Canada Research Chairs (CRC), Minister Chagger announced Water Institute member James R. Craig, from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, as a new Canada Research Chair in hydrologic modelling and analysis. The award of $500,000 over five years will allow Craig to develop and apply new hydrologic modelling approaches, addressing challenging water resources problems in both groundwater and surface water systems.
 


Read about all Waterloo faculty who received awards in Waterloo celebrates $11 million in awards from NSERC and CRC.

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