Andrew VanderZaag

Adjunct Professor / Research Scientist
Email: 
avanderz@uoguelph.ca
Phone number: 
613-759-1254

Education

PhD - Dalhousie University (2009) MSc - Nova Scotia Agricultural College (2007) BSc - University of Guelph (2003)


Research

Interests: sustainable agriculture, air quality, water quality, applied micrometeorology, greenhouse gas exchange, biogas technology, manure management, nutrient cycling.

Goals of my research program are to improve agricultural efficiency, environmental health, and sustainability in Canada. This work is done at multiple scales (plots, farms, regions) with the goal of achieving national-scale results. The research happens along three lines: (i) fundamental and applied research to test new techniques and technologies for reducing losses of greenhouse gases, ammonia, and water pollution; (ii) measurements to validate models that can be used to simulate these emissions; finally, (iii) using models to scale-up to the national level, and create algorithms that can be applied within Canada’s National GHG and Pollutant Inventories that are submitted annually to the UNFCCC and UNECE. In addition to improving the National Inventories, this work is simultaneously applied to improving sustainability metrics, such as carbon and water footprint calculations.

Tools/Instrumentation: open-path lasers (CH4, NH3) with pan-tilt scanners, 3D sonic anemometers (CSAT3, Gill), tunable diode lasers (TGA100A), gas chromatograph (CH4, N2O, CO2), chambers (manual and Li-Cor auto-chamber), eddy covariance systems (CPEC200, IRGASON), dataloggers (CR3000, CR1000, CR800), transit-time ultrasonic water flow meters, numerous environmental sensors for air, soil, and water.

Location: I am based at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Central Experimental Farm in Ottawa. This is a large research center, and although it is in the middle of a city, the Ottawa valley is a very productive and active agricultural region. I work closely with several scientists at AAFC who specialize in agro-meteorology, carbon, and ecosystem modeling, and with scientists at Environment Canada's Pollutant Inventory Reporting Division. I collaborate extensively with the researchers at the U of G and its regional locations in the Ottawa area - Campus d'Alfred, and Keptville. My group does research on several farms in the area.

SES Graduate Students based in my Lab: 

  • Jessica Singh (MSc, 2014-) is studying greenhouse gas balances from cropping systems including annuals, perennials, legumes, and pasture. Surface fluxes and dissolved N2O in drainage water are of interest.
  • Emily Schwager (MSc, 2013-) is studying the N-balance and nitrous oxide emissions from dairy feed crops and exploring the effect of anaerobic digestion and timing manure application. Co-supervised with Dr. Claudia Wagner-Riddle.
  • Leigh Evans (MSc, 2012-) is studying the effect of biogas on ammonia emissions using the bLS inverse dispersion micrometeorological technique, and wind-tunnels. Co-supervised with Dr. Rob Gordon.
  • Vera Bosak (MSc, 2012-) is studying the treatment of wash-water from a potato farm. Co-supervised with Dr. Rob Gordon.

SES Graduate Students where I am a committee member:

  • Gudmundur Johannesson (PhD)
  • Lia Maldaner (PhD)
  • Rezvan Taki (PhD)
  • Alassane Sissoko (MSc)
  • Alex Robinson (MSc)

My lab also includes technicians, a post-doc (Dr. Balde) using inverse dispersion technique (open-path lasers, WindTrax model); MSc student at Carleton University (S. Piquette) studying water use in dairy.

Teaching: I co-taught ENVS 6882 (Special Topics in Land Resources Management), where we focus on measuring environmentally relevant parameters (air, soil, water, plants, manure) from theoretical and applied perspectives; and ENVS 6451 (Special Topics in Ecosystem Science and Biodiversity), where we focused on biophysical processes in water management and wastewater treatment for agriculture.


Publications

VanderZaag, A.C., Flesch, T.K., Desjardins, R.L., Baldé, H., and T. Wright. 2014. Measuring methane emissions at two dairy farms – seasonal and management effects. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, Available online 8 April 2014, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.agrformet.2014.02.003.

Bittman, S., Masse, D., Pattey, E., Cournoyer, M., Qiu, G.-W., Narjoux, A., Sheppard, S.C., and VanderZaag, A.C. 2013. Effects of Agriculture on Air Quality in Canada., in Taylor, E and McMillan, A. (eds.) - Air quality management. Canadian perspectives on a global issue., Springer, Chapter 11, pp. 237-259.

VanderZaag, A.C., MacDonald, J.D., Evans, L., Vergé, X.P.C., and Desjardins, R. (2013) Towards a methane emission inventory that is responsive to changes on Canadian farms. Environmental Research Letters 8(3) 035008 13pp.

Vergé, X.P.C., Maxime, D., Dyer, J.A., Desjardins, R.L., Arcand, Y., and VanderZaag, A.C. (2013) Carbon footprint of Canadian dairy products: Calculations and issues. Journal of Dairy Science (published online 08 July 2013)

VanderZaag, A.C., Amon, B., Bitman, S., Kozlova, N., Kuczynski, T., Menzi, H., and Raaflaub, M. (2013) Ammonia abatement with manure storage and processing techniques. Chapter 5 in M. Sutton and S. Reis (Eds) Costs of ammonia abatement and the climate co-benefits. Springer. (in press)

Carreau, R., VanAcker, S., VanderZaag, A.C., Madani, A., Drizo, A., and Gordon, R. (2012) Evaluation of a surface flow constructed wetland treating abattoir wastewater. Applied Engineering in Agriculture 28:757-766.

Gordon, R., VanderZaag, A.C., Dekker, P., De Haan, R., and Madani, A. (2011) Impact of modified tillage on runoff and nutrient loads from potato fields in Prince Edward Island. Agricultural Water Management 98:1782-1788.

VanderZaag, A.C., Wagner-Riddle, C., Park, K-H., and Gordon, R. (2011) Methane emissions from stored liquid dairy manure in a cold climate. Animal Feed Science and Technology 166-167:581-589.

VanderZaag, A.C., Jayasundara, S., and Wagner-Riddle, C. (2011) Strategies to mitigate nitrous oxide emissions from land applied manure. Animal Feed Science and Technology 166-167:464-479.

VanderZaag, A.C., Campbell, K., Jamieson, R., Sinclair, A., and Hynes, L. (2010) Survival of E. coli in agricultural soil and presence in tile drainage and shallow ground water. Can. J. Soil Sci. 90:495–505.

VanderZaag, A.C., Gordon, R., Burton, D., Jamieson, R., and Stratton, G. (2010) Permeable synthetic covers for controlling emissions from liquid dairy manure. Applied Engineering in Agriculture 26:287-297.

VanderZaag, A.C., Gordon, R., Burton, D., Jamieson, R., and Stratton, G. (2010) Effects of winter storage conditions and subsequent agitation on gaseous emissions from liquid dairy manure. Canadian Journal of Soil Science 90:229–239.

VanderZaag, A.C., Gordon, R., Burton, D., Jamieson, R., and Stratton, G. (2010) Greenhouse gas emissions from surface flow and subsurface flow constructed wetlands treating dairy wastewater. Journal of Environmental Quality 39:1–12.

VanderZaag, A.C., Gordon, R., Burton, D., Jamieson, R., and Stratton, G. (2009) Gas emissions from straw covered liquid dairy manure during summer storage and autumn agitation. Transactions of the ASABE 52(2):599–608.

VanderZaag, A.C., Gordon, R., Burton, D., Jamieson, R., and Stratton, G. (2008) Ammonia emissions from surface flow and subsurface flow constructed wetlands treating dairy wastewater. Journal of Environmental Quality 37(6):1–9.

VanderZaag, A.C., Gordon, R., Glass, V., and Jamieson, R. (2008) Floating covers to reduce gas emissions from liquid manure storages: A Review. Applied Engineering in Agriculture 24(5):657-671.


Funding

AAFC A-base; AAFC Agriflex
AAFC Agri-Innovation Program (Dairy Research Cluster 2)
NRCan (Program of Energy Research and Development, PERD)
OMAFRA (as a collaborator with A. Crolla, C. Wagner-Riddle)
WAMQI (as a collaborator with T. Nelson).


Awards

NSERC Post Doctoral Fellowship (2009-2011)
Doctoral Thesis Award (Dalhousie University)
Izaak Walton Killam Predoctoral Scholarship (Dalhousie University
NSERC PGS D (2007-2009)
NSERC PGS M (2005-2007)


Research Area

sustainable agriculture, air quality, water quality, applied micrometeorology, greenhouse gas exchange, biogas technology, manure management, nutrient cycling