News and Updates

The GRRG welcomes two new graduate students:

  • Eric Ludwig started his MSc in September 2023
  • Pelumi Shotayo started her MSc in September 2023

New Papers: 

  • April Gullacher (MSc 2022), Diana Allen and Jon Goetz (BC Ministry of Forests) have published a paper titled "Early warning indicators of groundwater drought in mountainous regions" in Water Resources Research.
  • Zidra Hammond' (MSc 2022) and Diana Allen's paper titled "Evaluating the feasibility of using artificial neural networks to predict complex glacial deposits" has been accepted for publication in Hydrogeology Journal.

New Report - Indicators of Groundwater Drought in British Columbia (January 2023)

As part of our Canadian Mountain Network and BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, we explored various climate and hydrological indicators of summer groundwater drought using generalized additive models (GAMs). We identified wells in two regions of BC (south central BC and the Fraser Valley) that could be used by the province for tracking groundwater drought. We also developed an approach for assessing aquifers in the Okanagan Basin according to their susceptibility to drought. The research was published as a BC Water Science Series report.

Download the report here.

The GRRG welcomes:

  • Jeremy Klein (BSc student) who will be working as a Research Assistant in Summer 2023.

Congratulations to:

  • Aspen Anderson, who defended her PhD Dissertation in January 2023
  • Matt Martinolich, who defended his MSc thesis in November 2022

Congratulations to:

  • Zidra Hammond, who defended her MSc thesis in June 2022.
  • April Gullacher, who defended her MSc thesis in June 2022.

The GRRG welcomes:

  • Eric Ludwig (BSc student) who will be working as a Research Assistant in Summer 2022.

Installing Tidbit temperature loggers (n the rain) in the North Alouette River, May 2022. Lea will be comparing insitu measurements of stream temperature with thermal infrared images.


Testing out Dr. Hahm's new isotope analyzer.

New Paper - Adam Mitton's paper titled "Aquifer-Stream Exchanges and the Importance of Groundwater Discharge for Maintaining Instream Habitat and Benthic Macroinvertebrates" as been published in a special issue Novel Approaches for Understanding Groundwater Dependent Ecosystems in a Changing Environment in the journal Frontiers in Earth Science.

Nature Climate Change FOCUS on Water in an Changing Climate. One of our 2016 GRRG papers, "Groundwater Vulnerability on Small Islands" has been featured by Nature Climate Change in a "Focus" on Water in a Changing Climate, February 8, 2022. 

New Paper - Diana Allen and Alex Nott published a paper (December 2021) titled "How Important are those Fracture Zones? Scale Dependent Characteristics Revealed Through Field Studies and an Integrated Hydrological Model of a Mountain Headwater Catchment" in Frontiers in Water. Special Issue Uncertainty in Groundwater Modeling Across Scales.

New Paper - Chris Henry (MSc 2011), Diana Allen and Dirk Kirste published a paper (February 2022) titled "Characterizing recharge in southern Mali using a combination of modeling and stable isotopes". Special Issue on Groundwater Recharge in Drylands. Frontiers in Water.

New PICS Opportunity Research Project

The GRRG is excited about our new PICS Opportunity project "Drought and deluge: informed water allocation decision making in a world of intensifying hydrologic extremes" funded by the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions. 

SFU researchers Diana Allen (Earth Sciences) and Jesse Halm (Geography) have partnered with the BC Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development to  1) co-investigate the impacts of hydrologic extremes in the urban-rural-wildland fringe of adjacent mountain-to-valley bottom watersheds (North Alouette and Blaney) in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, and 2) co-develop a series of decision-support tools and inform policy surrounding water management, which take into account adaptation to climate extremes.

The GRRG welcomes five new graduate students and one new research assistant.

  • Alexandre Nott started his MSc in May 2021.
  • Adam Mitton began a PhD in September 2021. 
  • Lea Antesz began a MSc in September 2021.
  • Ariel Greenblat began a MSc in September 2021.
  • Stephen Bartlett began a MSc in September 2021. Stephen is co-supervised by Dr. Jessica Pilarczyk.
  • Brynje Johnson began a research assistant position in September 2021.

Congratulations to:

  • Dr. Stephanie Hunter, who defended her PhD dissertation in August 2021.
  • Adam Mitton, who defended his MSc thesis in August 2021.
  • Brynje Johnson, who defended her MSc thesis in August 2021.
  • Andrew Allen, who defended his MSc thesis in August 2021.

A New Field Season in the Fraser Valley Begins (May 2021) - Adam Mitton began his second field season in Bertrand Creek at Otter Park in the Fraser Valley. Similar to last summer, Adam is monitoreing hydrological variables (streamflow, groundwater level, streambed temperature, vertical flux across the streambed) and sampling aquatic macroinvertebrates along different stream transects to build an understanding of the habitat variables that control macroinvertebrate abundance in this groundwater influenced stream.

New Paper - Teresa Rosales-Ramirez published a paper in the journal Sustainability (April 2021) titled "Mapping the vulnerability of groundwater to wastewater spills for source water protection in a shale gas region"

New Report - Classifying Provincial Observation Wells (March 2021)

As part of our research project on developing a groundwater level drought indicator for British Columbia, graduate student April Gullacher worked on classifying provincial observation wells according to whether the aquifer-stream system is recharge-driven, that is, changes in groundwater level in an aquifer occur before a change in  streamflow, or whether the system is streamflow-driven, that is, the streamflow leads the response. These classificaiton results help us to understand the dynamics of the groundwater system so that we can better interpret the data we collect.

Download the report

New Paper - Stephanie Hunter published a paper in the journal Atmosphere (December 2020) titled "Comparing approaches for reconstructing groundwater levels in the mountainous regions of interior British Columbia, Canada, using tree ring widths".

New Report - Groundwater Flow Model for Bertrand Creek Watershed (December 2020)

Undergraduate student Alex Nott built a groundwater flow model for Bertrand Creek Watershed. The goal of the model was to identify where groundwater contributes to streamflow (gaining reaches) and where streamflow is lost to the aquifer (losing reaches). The modeling report has been published as a BC Water Sciences Series Report.

Download the Report

New Theses and Reports - Streamflow Depletion due to Groundwater Pumping (2017-2019)

We undertook a field investigation at two field sites in the Fraser Valley to try to estimate streamflow depletion due to groundwater pumping.

The first field site was Steele Park in Langely, BC. Here, undergraduate students Glenn Hall (2017) and Allegra Whister (2018) completed their B.Sc. honours thesis research. Glenn did a hydrogeological characterization of the site, and Allegra explored the temperature regime of the stream. Download the report

The second field site was Otter Park in Langley, BC. Here Brynje Johnson (2018) completed her B.Sc. Honours thesis research and Andrew Garnet completed a Directed Studies course to develop a groundwater model of the pumping test. Download the report

Post-doctoral Fellow Mary Ann Middleton assessed stream vulnerability to pumping throughout the Fraser Valley. Download the report