Chris Garda



Chris completed his undergraduate degree in Environmental Science at Mount Royal University in Calgary, AB. During this program he completed a work term conducting water quality compliance monitoring with the City of Calgary. Following graduation, Chris worked within Alberta’s oil and gas sector as an Environmental Compliance Specialist conducting reclamation, remediation, and environmental reporting before returning to school at Dalhousie.

Current Position: 

Community Resource Technologist for the BC Public Service


Assessing Aquatic Ecosystem Health: Does Community Based Monitoring Contribute to Benefits Within the Ecosystems it Monitors?


The benefit of collecting monitoring data on aquatic ecosystems is well documented, but knowledge of whether community-based monitoring (CBM) directly benefits the ecosystems it monitors is lacking. The purpose of this study is to assess community-based water monitoring groups within the Maritime Provinces, and identify cases where monitoring has triggered actions that have led to ecosystem benefits. Using a case study approach, five CBM groups will be selected to participate in a mix-methods study that combines interviews, participant employed photography, and water quality monitoring data. Observable and measurable data will be used to analyze the correlation between activities conducted by CBM groups and ecosystem benefits. Data analysis will focus on observable (qualitative) and measureable (quantitative) factors that influence ecosystem health.

Conference Presentations:

Blair, J.B., Buckland-Nicks, A. & Garda, C. (August 13, 2013). Exploring graduate student research in community-based approaches to water monitoring and management. Canadian Association of Geographers Annual Conference. August 11-15, 2013. St. John’s, NFLD.

Garda, C., Castleden, Conrad, C., & Castleden, H. (March 15, 2013). Assessing aquatic ecosystem health: Does community-based monitoring contribute to benefits within the ecosystems it monitors? Sustainability and Environmental Research Symposium. March 15, 2013Halifax, NS.