A watershed moment – rethinking our relationship with water

Maricor Arlos grew up around water, but when she came to Canada she found purpose in sustaining it

A watershed moment – rethinking our relationship with waterGrowing up in the Philippines, a country in the western Pacific Ocean made up of 7,107 islands, Maricor Arlos didn’t think much about the water that surrounded her. With no central sewage system, many households in the Philippines have septic tanks or other forms of decentralized waste collection that would be cleared out periodically without…

Oil sands water reclamation materials put to commercialization test

Analysis tool could help companies decide which innovations are worth the investment

Oil sands water reclamation materials put to commercialization testEnvironmental reclamation is necessary, but sometimes it’s expensive for industry. What materials work best? Which ones are worth the investment? University of Alberta researchers are inching closer to answering those pressing questions through a project that looks at two reclamation materials with commercial potential: chicken feathers and biochar, a blackened byproduct created from waste like cow…

New tools developed to better track permafrost methane emissions

Will significantly improve estimates of current and future methane emissions

New tools developed to better track permafrost methane emissionsResearchers have developed new tools that will better track methane emissions from northern permafrost ecosystems, ultimately allowing for more accurate global predictions of future greenhouse gas emissions. The new emission dataset and map of northern wetlands and lakes the new tools will yield will significantly improve estimates of current and future methane emissions, said McKenzie…

Alberta expanding wastewater testing for SARS-CoV-2

Real-time infection rates to be tracked on public website

Alberta expanding wastewater testing for SARS-CoV-2Alberta can now track the prevalence of COVID-19 infections in nearly 75 per cent of the population thanks to the new Pan-Alberta Network for Wastewater-based SARS-CoV-2 Monitoring announced on Wednesday. When someone is infected with COVID-19 – whether they know it or not – traces of the virus are shed through the bowel and end up…

Lakes in Canadian Rockies losing turquoise lustre as glaciers fade

Changing colour of alpine lakes may be a sign of worsening water quality, according to reports

Lakes in Canadian Rockies losing turquoise lustre as glaciers fadeAnother casualty of the disappearance of glaciers in the Canadian Rockies is the vanishing of the iconic turquoise of glacier-fed alpine lakes, according to a University of Alberta limnologist who documented the unfortunate change in the latest look at the health of Canada’s mountains. In an essay written for the fourth annual State of the Mountains…

Four U of A researchers named to Royal Society of Canada

Innovators in women and children’s health, water safety, nutrition and archeology join ranks

Four U of A researchers named to Royal Society of CanadaWhy some are more susceptible to cardiovascular disease than others, even when taking into account life-modifying factors like smoking and exercise, boils down to developmental aspects that start in the womb, according to a global authority on vascular pathophysiology in the pregnancy complication of pre-eclampsia. “It sets the stage,” said Sandra Davidge, Distinguished University Professor in…

Can First Nations truly be autonomous in all things?

Ensuring access to safe drinking water isn’t simple. It may require guidance and even intervention by the federal government

Can First Nations truly be autonomous in all things?Self-determination for Indigenous communities can prevent meeting certain standards or goals, especially if the federal government takes a hands-off approach. This can be the problem when it comes to ensuring all First Nations have access to safe drinking water, which isn’t a simple matter. It has never been only about providing the necessary funds (whatever…

Some E. coli bacteria thrive in wastewater treatment plants: study

Examining links to urinary tract infections, blood infections and meningitis

Some E. coli bacteria thrive in wastewater treatment plants: studyA strain of Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria is not only surviving, it’s thriving in wastewater treatment plants, according to recent research from a University of Alberta-led team that’s now working to understand their potentially harmful impact on human health. Most E. coli are destroyed by chlorine, oxygenation and other treatments in sewage plants. But…

Nanotechnology could significantly reduce industrial use of freshwater

Advance in water filtration technology has applications everywhere from the energy industry and agriculture to municipal water treatment

Nanotechnology could significantly reduce industrial use of freshwaterIn 2017, University of Alberta mechanical engineering professor Mohtada Sadrzadeh found himself presenting his work on a new water treatment technology at the Canadian Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA) conference right after a researcher from an IBM research centre who was pitching almost exactly the same technology. “It was strange for me at first — you hear the name…

Indigenous housing crisis can be solved using market forces

Only the private sector can deliver the high-quality housing that reserves need. Government waiting lists will never catch up

Indigenous housing crisis can be solved using market forcesAdequate housing – especially in remote and northern locations – is an intractable problem facing First Nation communities. The high cost of housing in these locations and the never-ending cycle of backlogs plague reserve communities across Canada. The federal government must pledge to make housing a commitment on the same level as safe drinking water…
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