February 18, 2002

New Alberta Research Council program focuses on integrated resource management

The Alberta Research Council (ARC) is establishing a new Integrated Resource Management (IRM) program, to be headed by Dr Richard Peter, who is completing a ten-year terms as dean of the faculty of science at the University of Alberta. He will join ARC on secondment from U of A in August, assuming the post of vice-president of the new program.

Dr Peter will establish and lead the IRM program, initially drawing on the Council's existing applied research activities in air monitoring, water treatment, toxicology and health. "Dr Peter's experience and connections will help ARC rally its strengths into a holistic program to identify and mitigate short-term and cumulative effects of resource development on human and animal health.

"He will also be responsible for assembling the partners necessary for a more effective program from universities, Alberta and federal government departments, and other Canadian and international research organization and agencies," said ARC managing director and CEO John McDougall.

A goal of the IRM program is to be a scientific leader in risk assessment and technology development, working to develop and promote holistic strategies for environmentally and socially sustainable resource development. It will also serve as a forum to define and resolve issues related to resource development.

Another function of the program will be to transfer knowledge on mitigating risks associated with industrial development (particularly in the areas of environmental pollution and food safety) to producers, consumers and regulators. In addition to scientific research, the program will encompass protocols and monitoring systems to examine the links between resource development, air, water and land resources, human and animal health, and biodiversity.

More information is available from Dr Richard Peter at the University of Alberta, 780/492-4757, E-mail dick.peter@ualberta.ca, or Carmen Forster, at the ARC, 780/450-5148, E-mail forster@arc.ab.ca.

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