Patricia A. Chambers

Current research and/or projects

Contributing to Environment Canada's mandate to conserve and protect aquatic ecosystems

  • Effects of nutrient loading from agricultural activities, land use change and municipal wastewater discharge on water quality of streams and rivers
  • Roles of physical, chemical and biological factors in the control of biomass and species composition of aquatic plant communities in lakes and rivers
  • Developing approaches for evaluating the trophic status of streams and rivers

Professional activities / interests

Lead of the Water Theme of the National Agri-Environmental Standards Initiative (NAESI). The goal of the Water Theme is to develop environmental standards to protect surface waters from deleterious effects of excessive nutrients, sediments and pathogens, and unsustainable water use

Lead of a federal government review, requested by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Environment and Sustainability in their analysis of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, and senior author of a interdisciplinary report that assessed the effects of anthropogenic nutrients on Canadian ecosystems

Past President of the Society of Canadian Limnologists. Associate Editor of the Journal of the North American Benthological Society.

Thesis Supervisor for 7 PhD and MSc students, as well as 2 post-doctoral fellows, via Adjunct Professorship with the Department of Biology, University of Alberta

Education and awards

Ph.D., University of St. Andrews, Scotland

Key publications

Alexander A.C., P.A. Chambers and D.S. Jeffries. 2017. Episodic acidification of 5 rivers in Canada's oil sands during snowmelt: a 25-year record.  Science of the Total Environment 599-600: 739-749.

Rattan K.J., J.C. Corriveau, R.B. Brua, J.M. Culp, A.G. Yates and P.A. Chambers. 2017. Quantifying seasonal variation in total phosphorus and nitrogen from prairie streams in the Red River Basin, Manitoba Canada. Science of the Total Environment 575: 649-659.

Alexander A.C. and P.A. Chambers. 2016. Assessment of 7 Canadian rivers in relation to stages in oil sands industrial development, 1972 to 2010.  Environmental Reviews 24: 484-494.

Yates A.G., R.B. Brua, J. Corriveau, J.M. Culp and P.A. Chambers. 2014.  Seasonally driven variation in spatial relationships between agricultural land use and in-stream nutrient concentrations.  River Research and Applications 30: 476-493.

Holeton C., P.A. Chambers and L. Grace. 2011. Wastewater release and its impacts on Canadian waters.  Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 68: 1836-1859.

Chambers, P.A., C. Vis, R.B. Brua, M. Guy, J.M. Culp and G.A. Benoy. 2008. Eutrophication of agricultural streams: defining nutrient concentrations to protect ecological condition. Water Science and Technology 58: 2203–2210.

Chambers, P.A., P. Lacoul, K. Murphy and S. Thomaz. 2008. Global diversity of aquatic macrophytes in freshwater. Hydrobiologia 595: 9-26.

Chambers, P.A., J.M. Culp, N.E. Glozier, K.J. Cash, F.J. Wrona and L. Noton. 2006. Northern Rivers Ecosystem Initiative: Nutrients and Dissolved Oxygen – Issues and Impacts. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 113: 117-141.

Chambers, P.A., A.R. Dale, G.J. Scrimgeour and M.L. Bothwell. 2000. Nutrient enrichment of northern rivers in response to pulp mill and municipal discharges. Journal of Aquatic Ecosystem Stress and Recovery. 8:53-66.

Chambers, P.A., M. Guy, E.S. Roberts, M.N. Charlton, R. Kent, C. Gagnon, G. Grove and N. Foster. 2001. Nutrients and their Impact on the Canadian Environment. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Environment Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Health Canada, and Natural Resources Canada. En21-205/2001E.

Research facility

867 Lakeshore Rd.
Burlington, ON L7S 1A1


Adjunct Professor in the Department of Biology, University of New Brunswick

Associate of the Canadian Rivers Institute