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The Network

About NSERC HydroNet

River image   NSERC HydroNet is :

  • a collaborative five year research program, initiated in 2010, to supply new knowledge about the effects of hydropower on biotic  (living organisms) and abiotic (e.g. physical, chemical) processes;

  • a national research network, that involves academic, governmental, and industrial partners.

NSERC HydroNet is a multi-stakeholder and inter-disciplinary partnership that promotes the exchange of ideas, expertise, data, and solutions among scientists and managers from all regions across Canada. Through the coordinated efforts of BC Hydro, Manitoba Hydro, Nalcor, Brookfield Power, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, three provincial agencies (Manitoba Water Stewardship, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Ministère des Ressources Naturelles et de la Faune du Québec), and professors, research professionals, and graduate students from 12 universities, the Network aims at developing a better understanding of the effects of hydroelectric operations on aquatic ecosystems.

NSERC HydroNet is built on the critical mass of nationally distributed fisheries-aquatic scientists capable of significantly contributing to estimating the environmental effects of hydropower. Specific projects conducted by NSERC HydroNet to reconcile industrial and environmental water requirements are developed using a consensus among industry, government, and university collaborators. The structure and the research programme of the Network is meant to be adaptive. NSERC HydroNet is intended to grow by attracting additional partners, interested in a wide range of research questions, and potentially requiring new expertise and collaborators. The Network is also expected to evolve as knowledge is acquired, as regulations are modified, and as specific needs are expressed by present and future partners.

Science-based practical solutions developed by the combined expertise of the members of NSERC HydroNet is expected to provide industry and government managers with new knowledge and tools to assess, mitigate, and minimize the potential effects on the productive capacity of fish habitats, to improve the decision-making process associated with hydropower operations, to reduce conflict among stakeholders, and hence, to promote the sustainable hydropower in Canada.

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