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Beth Parker

Beth Parker

School of Engineering
University of Guelph

Chair Title

NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Groundwater Contamination in Fractured Media

Chair Program

Industrial Research Chairs Program


Senior Chairholder since 2007


The general research topic of this Industrial Research Chair is groundwater contamination in fractured media with emphasis on the distribution, transport and fate of mobile chlorinated organic chemicals in fractured sedimentary rock aquifers. These media are particularly prone to industrial contamination. Many contaminated bedrock aquifers occur in Canada and knowledge is needed to help avoid more contamination and manage the existing contamination.

Dr. Parkerís field-focused research, beginning in the early 1990s, has resulted in development of a new approach for determining the nature, extent and behaviour of organic contaminants of industrial origin in sedimentary bedrock. The IRC research will demonstrate the effectiveness of this new approach, which relies on several new field methods, and develop a field-verified model for contaminant migration and fate in fractured sedimentary rock with emphasis on chlorinated solvents. The focus in the first five-year term will be methodology improvements and intense testing at four industrial sites in Canada and the United States that are contaminated with chlorinated solvents and other common industrial chemicals.

This IRC will advance the way in which fractured rock hydrogeology is practiced by the groundwater profession in Canada and internationally. The collaborative research will aid the IRC partners by:

  • strengthening the capabilities of consulting and groundwater industry equipment manufacturing companies;
  • providing site-specific information needed by site owners for decision-making in regards to the management of existing contamination; and
  • providing valuable information to government organizations responsible for protecting the public interest with respect to water resources.


  • The Boeing Company
  • Schlumberger Water Services
  • Hydrite Chemical Co.
  • Syngenta Crop Protection Canada Inc.
  • Guelph Tool Inc.
  • City of Guelph/Ville de Guelph
  • R. J. Burnside and Associates Limited
  • Regional Municipality of Waterloo/Municipalité régionale de Waterloo
  • Golder Associates Ltd.
  • AquaResource Inc.
  • Dillon Consulting Limited

Contact Information

School of Engineering
University of Guelph
Albert A. Thornbrough Building
50 Stone Road East
Guelph, Ontario
N1G 2W1

Tel.: 519-824-4120, ext. 53642
Fax: 519-836-0227

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