WaterTech 2017 Conference

CMI personnel presented at the WaterTech 2017 Conference in Banff, Alberta

The WaterTech conference brings together professionals from all industry sectors who are interested in the technical aspects of water and wastewater management. This includes governmental/regulatory bodies, environmental consulting firms, natural gas producers, and much more.

Dr. Court Sandau and other CMI personnel attended and presented at WaterTech 2017.

Families and Fingerprints:

Interpretation of sediment PAH data after an oil spill into a fresh water environment

Dr. Court Sandau is presented on the interpretation of PAHs in water and sediment after an oil spill on Tuesday, April 4th.


PAHs are often a key focus of long-term liability assessments as part of environmental investigations, and PAHs play an important role in analyzing for residue from a spill.

But PAHs are formed by a wide range of processes, and are not just an indicator for oil residues. There are other potential sources of PAHs, including natural processes in the environment. PAHs from all of these processes are ultimately transported to river systems.

When investigating for residual impacts from an oil spill, these ‘background’ origins of PAHs can confound data interpretation. This may cause undue concern regarding the scale of a residual impact and may misdirect remedial efforts and monitoring.

Dr. Court Sandau presented on the concepts of statistical and ‘fingerprinting’ techniques for PAH analysis using real datasets from investigations in Western Canada.

Environmental professionals involved in environmental assessment of PAHs in rivers and sediments will find the content of this presentation highly applicable.


Where Does Toluene Come From?

Petrogenic Families and Biogenic Loners

Phil Presenting at WaterTech

CMI personnel presenting at WaterTech 2017


The seasonal accumulation of toluene by microbiological processes within specific wetland environments is a locally-recognized, but little understood, process. It has not documented within the peer-reviewed literature.  Currently, there is no legally defensible method of distinguishing the origin of toluene in environmental samples.

The presence of biogenic toluene can confound environmental investigations relating to petroleum releases within wetland environments. These environments comprise a large area of northern Alberta as well as other provinces.

This presentation discusses the results from the application of an established ASTM method. The method is already accepted for arson analysis and has been applied to the investigation of the origin of toluene in wetland peat samples. The presentation covers how this method is used to distinguish between biogenic and petrogenic origins of toluene in a legally-defensible manner.

Environmental professionals involved in spill remediation or site monitoring will find this presentation applicable.


Learn More

Find more information on this conference at http://www.esaa.org/watertech.