What we do

Practical Approaches to Working with the Environment Based on Science and Experience.

Kilgour & Associates Ltd. was established in Ottawa in 2008. We are biologists with expertise in aquatic and terrestrial environments. Our skills allow us to carry out detailed field programs, provide expert statistical analysis of environmental data, and communicate results in high-quality detailed reports. We frequently carry out research, routine monitoring, and general inventory in support of baseline studies, ongoing operations, and closure studies.

In addtion to ‘grass roots’ biology, our depth of experience gives us an edge in reviewing government environmental policies. We are routinely asked by Municipal, Provincial and Federal agencies to provide opinions on policy or guidleines.

We are actively working on projects across Canada from our base in Ottawa, with staff in Sudbury, Dorset, New Liskeard and most recently Picton. We have at times worked internationally including the US and Australia.

We pride ourselves in technical strength, responsiveness, and an ability to communicate with agencies on behalf of our clients.

We try to be innovative, finding ways that our clients can contribute to the economy while providing net benefit to natural ecosystems (it’s actually possible!).

Some of our key project areas are briefly described below. If you click on a hyperlink you will be taken to more detail.

Ethel Lake

Environmental Effects Monitoring
Our key people have designed and implemented environmental effects monitoring programs for industry clients in the metal mining, oil sands, municipal wastewater, pulp & paper, and textile sectors across Canada and internationally. We have provided advice to local, provincial and federal agencies on the design of monitoring programs and the interpretation of resulting data. We are currently working on EEM programs in Ottawa, northern Ontario, Alberta, Saskatchewan, northern Quebec, and offshore Newfoundland. Studies are being carried out in creeks, rivers, lakes and marine environments. Read More

Collins Creek, SK

Construction Support.

Kilgour & Associates Ltd. has been contracted by various local builders and contractors to assist in the construction of infrastructure such as roads and culverts, the design and expansion of stormwater management ponds, or more general earthworks and land preparation.

Our suite of services includes negotiation with municipal governments, conservation authorities, provincial Ministries and Federal Departments on behalf of our clients. We also apply for and obtain permits for taking water, watercourse alteration and HADD to fish habitat, for our clients, as required.

We often monitor environmental mitigation measures required under various permits and approvals including as-required inspections of sediment and erosion protection measures, measurement and recording of water pumping volumes, collection and analysis of water (or effluent) quality samples for suspended solids and nutrients (etc.), removal of fish from watercourses prior to in-water works, and site inspections for species at risk immediately prior to use of heavy equipment.

We, finally, carry out ecological monitoring studies as can be required under more complex permits or approvals, and report back to agencies, again on behalf of our clients.

SWM Pond fish clean out

Feasibility Studies/Environmental Constraints Analysis.

Some of our clients engage us during the feasibility phase of a project to determine potential environmental constraints and liabilities associated with a land purchase or Capital project. Our evaluations consider existing and current legislation (municipal, provincial and federal), existing habitat (terrestrial and aquatic), and distributions of species of conservation concern or species at risk. We have carried out these studies in support of local land developments in the Ottawa area valued in the tens of millions of dollars. We have also carried out feasibility assessments for multi-billion dollar facilities (smelters).

Environmental Assessment.

Environmental assessments are required under municipal, provincial and federal processes, for capital major projects. Kilgour & Associates has been involved in numerous EA’s over the past several years in support of local infrastructure including roads, piers, bridges and airport expansion. For projects requiring EA we participate in various capacities. We most frequently provide expertise in “on-the-ground” inventories of aquatic and terrestrial environments, and produce reports on the natural environment that is incorporated in EA submissions to regulatory agencies. We are often then further engaged to negotiate environmental mitigations and setbacks, as they arise.

Environmental Policy Development.

We routinely work with government agencies in the development of science policy based on literature reviews and new research. We have examined new and emerging approaches to developing water quality guidelines. We have also reviewed international environmental policies and legislation in support of emerging Canadian federal and provincial environmental protection instruments. We have worked with Fisheries and Oceans Canada in the development of Operational Statements and a definition of “Risk” to fish habitat. We have worked with Environment Canada in the development of the Canadian Water Quality Index, and approaches to quantifying the ecological benefit of the road salt code of practice. Our work on ecological benefits of the road salt code of practice will be published in the Water Quality Research Journal of Canada (see our Posts Page for more information).

Habitat Restoration/Creation.

Our key people have worked collaboratively in multidisciplinary teams to develop ecological restoration plans for numerous degraded systems across Ontario. These projects normally involve field work to characterize the existing environment, and to determine a realistic restoration objective. We work with engineers to develop concepts, functional designs, and construction-ready designs. We further work with contractors and agencies to ensure that construction practices respect the required mitigations, to minimize impacts to the environment.

Species-at-Risk Assessment.

The Ontario Endangered Species Act (ESA, 2007) prohibits harm to listed species. We routinely carry out desk-top screening risk assessments for clients to identify potential issues on properties being considered for major projects. Desk-top assessments involve use of existing information and knowledge of species ranges and habitat requirements to determine a likelihood of a species’ occurrence. Where there is a likelihood, and a desire for a project to move forward, we carry out field studies applicable to individual species. We have, for example, carried out numerous studies of Bobolink and Eastern Meadowlark over the past few years in the Ottawa area. We have also carried out studies of Lake Sturgeon and American Eel.

Closure Planning.

We have worked with several mining companies in northern Ontario and Saskatchewan in the design of studies to obtain data, or in the provision of data documenting the condition of the natural environment in a closed state. We use state of the art methods for characterizing the health of aquatic organisms, and the chemistry of surface waters and sediments.

Fisheries and Aquatic Studies

Fisheries and aquatic sciences are core disciplines for us. We are fully outfitted to complete inventories of all kinds of freshwater systems including creeks, rivers, ponds and lakes (include the Great Lakes). We carry out inventories of fish species at risk including Lake Sturgeon, Deep-water Sculpin and various darter species. We complete water quality surveys, and sediment quality surveys as required to support client needs.