Developing a real-time early warning system for potable water sources

Healthy freshwater ecosystem plays a vital role in every Canadian’s daily life as primary drinking water source and sustains the social and economic status of Canada. However, Canada’s freshwater ecosystem has been negatively impacted by population growth, urbanization, industrialization, agriculture, and climate changes. The 2017 national assessment by World Wildlife Fund-Canada found that 60 among 167 sub-watersheds exhibiting high or very high levels of pollution threat are mostly in southern latitudes residing most of the population, the highest road densities, and much of Canada’s agriculture and industries. Therefore, this project aims to benchmark a real-time early warning system by integrating real-time UV-Vis absorption analysis and nontargeted HRMS analysis. The field tests at a highly impacted southern Ontario watershed will generate sufficient data to develop early warning systems to prevent the buildup of toxic substances over a long period of time resulting in unfit water intake and huge economic loss.

Yufeng Gong
Faculty Supervisor: 
Hui Peng
Partner University: