Vance joined WaterSMART as Principal Hydrogeologist in February 2016 and he has been practicing hydrogeology for the past 25 years. He received a Bachelor’s degree in Geology from the University of Alberta in 1990, is Graduate Certificate in Hydrogeology from Portland State University in 2005, and his Master’s in Hydrogeology from the University of Calgary in 2011. Vance began his career in the environmental industry in Southern California where his work focused primarily on servicing clientele in the Oil & Gas industry performing Phase I Environmental Site Assessments through Phase IV remedial activities, specializing in site assessments and groundwater monitoring and evaluation programs. Vance managed site assessment and groundwater characterization activities in California, Oregon, Washington, and Idaho at upstream, midstream, and downstream O&G facilities, metal foundries, precious metals reclamation plants, electronics manufacturing plants, and port facilities along coastal regions, automotive dealerships, and service stations.
He has worked closely with regulators at the municipal, state, provincial, and federal levels as a regulatory liaison and to ensure protection of the environment and achieve regulatory compliance. He has played a key role in large scale site characterizations within the Northern and Southern Athabasca Oil Sands regions involving complex quaternary and bedrock geology and associated non-saline and saline aquifers. He has managed geochemical and isotope studies to understand the genesis, flow paths, mixing zones, age, hydraulic communication between aquifers, seepage locations and rates associated with natural discharge into the Athabasca River. Vance has provided expert witness testimony on technical details related to contaminant migration and groundwater transport at a frac-sand reclamation facility in southern Alberta.
Vance has worked closely with Alberta Environment and Parks as one of the technical committee members on the Government of Alberta’s Monitoring, Evaluation, and Reporting Committee where he provides technical support for development of a geological model and transient groundwater flow model in the Southern Athabasca Oil Sands Region in addition to providing response on the Groundwater Management Framework. Vance was one of the few professionals selected to review and provide comment on CEMA’s Water Well Testing in the Athabasca Oil Sands, Complementary Guidance and on the Alberta Oil Sands Groundwater Modelling Guidelines.
He holds a professional designation as a geologist in Alberta with the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) and as a Registered Geologist in Oregon, U.S.A. with the National Association of State Boards of Geology. His expertise lies in the understanding of groundwater flow regimes, local scale through regional scale. Vance also possesses expertise in analytical and numerical modelling and pressure transient analysis. Due to his experience and expertise in these subject matters Vance was asked to be the Project Manager of the Canadian Oil Sands Innovative Alliance (COSIA) Regional Groundwater Sustainability Project, and the Chair of the Hydrogeology Working Group. He was later asked to participate as a Steering Committee Member on COSIA’s Water Environmental Priority Group Steering Committee. He has also been a technical member of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers Water Task Team. Vance maintains a strong advocate of environmental protection and consciousness.