WATERLOO, Ontario, Oct. 11 -- Wilfrid Laurier University issued the following news release:
Water: it is essential to life and covers about 362 million square kilometres of the earth's surface. Now, thanks to Wilfrid Laurier University's new Centre for Cold Regions and Water Science, researchers will have 14,000 square feet of space devoted to leading-edge water research. An event to mark the centre opening will take place Oct. 11, 10 a.m. at 65 Lodge St. on Laurier's Waterloo campus with remarks from MP Peter Braid, Minister Michael Miltenberger of the Government of the Northwest Territories, and Laurier President Max Blouw.
Research within the centre will involve scientists from across Canada and will focus on some of the country's most pressing questions about water, environmental and resource issues in cold regions, with implications for policy development and resource management.
"This building is a manifestation of the exceptional partnerships that Laurier's researchers have developed with the Government of the Northwest Territories and the institutional members of the Southern Ontario Water Consortium," said Deborah MacLatchy, Laurier's vice-president: academic and provost and a researcher in the centre. "It will be a hub of 'state-of-the-science' cold regions and water research and student training for years to come."
The two-storey facility will house Laurier's Canadian Aquatic Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Boreal Ecosystem Research (CALIBER); Laurier's Cold Regions Research Centre (CRRC); and the Laurier Institute for Water Science (LIWS). It will also house the ecotoxicology activities of the Southern Ontario Water Consortium (SOWC), including equipment and labs, sample preparation and staging areas for mobile trailers.
"Water and cold regions research are clearly areas of research excellence at Laurier," said Abby Goodrum, vice-president: research. "Research in these areas is of critical importance in today's world, and we are proud to have some of the leading authorities and researchers in these domains working here at our university."
Research examples include:
Biologist Jim McGeer studies physiological responses to environmental stress in aquatic animals and the environmental toxicology and risk assessment of metals and nanomaterials for application in risk assessment and regulations.
Geographer Bill Quinton, Canada Research Chair in Cold Regions Hydrology, studies the hydrology of cold regions with applications in assuring reliable sources of drinking water, flood planning, road and oil pipeline design and hydroelectric power station operation.
Biologist Jennifer Baltzer, Canada Research Chair in Forests and Global Change, studies ecosystems in boreal forests to understand species range sizes and patterns of local distribution.
Geographer Mike English studies the hydrology and chemistry of groundwater and surface water and the downstream impacts of river impoundment, and examines acidification in the Canadian Shield and the chemistry of high-Arctic terrestrial drainage.