The Chief Scientist is appointed through Ministerial Order under section 15.1 (1) of the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act.
The role of the Chief Scientist is to:
- communicate environmental science information to Albertans and government
- provide scientific oversight on the provincial environmental science program
- Acts as a champion of science, research, and the role of evidence, as a recognized expert and active researcher in environmental sciences.
- Provides scientific advice to address complex environmental challenges and opportunities facing the province and the government.
- Promotes and builds scientific excellence through partnerships with Universities and other credible scientific and research based institutions and organizations.
- Ensures scientific information coming from Alberta Environment and Parks meets rigorous ethical and scientific standards.
- Establishes and upholds a public schedule for environmental science reporting to inform the Government of Alberta and Albertans.
In addition to the responsibilities listed above, the Chief Scientist also consults and supports the Science Advisory Panel and the Indigenous Wisdom Advisory Panel to ensure an improved understanding of Alberta’s environmental issues.
Meet the Chief Scientist
Dr. Fred Wrona, Chief Scientist, Ph.D.
Dr. Fred Wrona was appointed Alberta’s Environment and Parks Chief Scientist on April 5, 2016. He also serves as Assistant Deputy Minister of the Environmental Monitoring and Science Division of Alberta Environment and Parks.
Dr. Wrona has more than 30 years of experience leading or contributing to numerous environmental programs addressing regional, national and international environmental issues related to:
- climate impacts on freshwater ecosystems
- cold region hydro-ecology
- cumulative effects assessments
- integrated and adaptive environmental monitoring program design
Dr. Wrona has published over 150 peer-reviewed scientific articles, reports and proceedings in these areas and has been the recipient of numerous national and international distinctions and awards for for his research and scientific program leadership.
Current and previous work
In addition to his roles above, Dr. Wrona is currently an adjunct professor at the University of Calgary, where he was a member of the faculty from 1982 to 2004, and currently continues to be the program co-chair on the joint Federal-Provincial Oil Sands Monitoring Program in partnership with Environment and Climate Change Canada.
He has previously served in a number of environmental science positions in the province of Alberta, across Canada and internationally, including:
- Invited Chair of the External Scientific Advisory Committee for the Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM) at the University of Aveiro in Portugal
- Canada’s Head Delegate to the Arctic Council’s Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program
- Canada’s Head Delegate for the UNESCO International Hydrology Program (IHP)
- Senior Science Strategist and Advisor with Environment Canada
- Professor at the University of Victoria’s Department of Geography and the Water and Climate Impacts Research Centre (W-CIRC) in British Columbia
- Scientific Director of the Northern River Basins Study in Alberta
- Member of the International Science Advisory Committee of the Alberta Water Research Institute (now part of Alberta Innovates – Energy and Environment Solutions)
Dr. Wrona holds a Ph.D. in Aquatic Ecology (1982) and a B.Sc. in Environmental Sciences (1977) from the University of Calgary in Alberta.
Office of the Chief Scientist Publications
- Knowledge for a changing environment: 2019-2024 science strategy
- Castle Region Scientific Assessment and Synthesis
- Land Use, Climate Change and Ecological Responses in the Upper North Saskatchewan and Red Deer River Basins: A Scientific Assessment
- Linear Disturbances in the Livingstone-Porcupine Hills of Alberta: Review of Potential Ecological Responses
To connect with the Office of the Chief Scientist:
Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
10th Floor, 9888 Jasper Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 5C6