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Prof. Junye Wang
Athabasca University, Canada
A unified approach for process-based modelling of remediation and reclamation

Unconventional oil and gas, such as oilsands and shale gas,has tremendous economic potential in the world. However, concerns over the extraction and reclamation and management of this resource are causing because of the potential dangers such as water contamination, toxic and known carcinogens from flow-back. Land use changes due to oilsand mining are strong determinants of soil degradation, absorption and diffusion of tailing pollutants. However, the whole life cycle of tailing and wastewater is poorly understood because of complex natural abiotic processes such as soil absorption and filtration of chemicals, and biotic recycling via root systems and soil microorganisms. Indirect effects from oilsand tailing could be detrimental, but there is a scarcity of data to verify current claims. There are also major knowledge gaps in how the tailing pollutants will degrade and diffuse through the biogeochemical processes above and below ground once they are inputted to a site or a watershed. Hydrological models are the dominant tools for assessment of environmental impacts of chemicals on a site or watershed. However, hydrological models cannot capture the natural abiotic and biotic processes of pollutants due to lack of abiotic and biotic functions and anthropogenic actions in agricultural and rural regions. This talk present the advent of agroecosystem modeling which has provided opportunities to develop a modeling framework of dynamic interactions among nutrients, water, oilsand pollutants, soil, and flora with or without oilsands in rural regions. We will introduce existing agroecosystem model: Denitrification Decomposition (DNDC) and discuss integrating possibility with site reclamation in terms of the needs of integrated modeling of oilsand and agroecosystem, which are essential to couple vegetation-land-water-atmosphere in order to study dynamic interactions among nutrients, pollutants, water, soil, flora and climate above and below ground.

     The integrated modeling framework of oilsand site reclamation and agroecosystem will be used for deeper understanding of the environmental impacts of oilsands on agricultural and rural systems. This will provide a unique capability to evaluate biogeochemical degradation, absorption and diffusion of tailing pollutant with emphasis on dynamic interactions among pollutants, water, nutrient, soils, vegetation and climate. This framework will also help identify key factors, design and implement effective monitoring systems for the environmental impacts of oilsand pollution on rural regions, and propose practical measures for reclamation management of the cumulative effects of oilsand tailing.


Dr. Junye Wang received the M.Sc. degree from Harbin Shipbuilding Engineering Institute and Ph.D. degree from East China University of Sciences and Technology. He is currently a Professor and CAIP Research Chair at Athabasca University, Canada and manages a modelling group. Prior that, he was a Principal Research Scientist at Rothamsted Research, UK. He has over 30 year experience of multidisciplinary and multi-scale modelling and simulation and is internationally recognized as a leader in energy, environment and sustainability. He has worked the computational aspects of various physical, chemical and biological systems using various numerical approaches, such as lattice Boltzmann method (LBM) computational fluid dynamics (CFD), and analytical approaches with a broad range of applications, such as agro-eco systems, carbon sequestration, greenhouse gas emission and mitigation, nutrient cycling, water and hydrology, fuel cells/microbial fuel cells, thermofluid systems, porous media and bioenergy. He has developed parallel processing algorithms with high performance and memory optimisation, fully coupling real complex porous media generated by X-ray microCTfor complex flow modelling. He has also developed a generalised model of flow distribution in manifold systems, which are fundamentals of flow field designs offuel cells, micro-reactors, and other manifold systems. His researches were highlighted by governments and organisations, such as European Commission in Science for Environment Policy, Earth Emphasis and Renewable Energy Global Innovation. Dr. Wang has authored >80 papers (including>50 refereed journal papers) and is currently PIs of several projects. He serves associate editor and editorial board member of several journals. He has been reviewer of proposals and rapporteur of final reportsof the three research Councils in the UK (EPSRC, NERC and ESRC) and IPCC, and reviewer of about 40 international journals.

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