Dr. Colin Cooke

Dr. Colin Cooke, PhD


I currently work as a Scientist within the Environmental Monitoring and Science Division (EMSD) of Alberta Environment and Parks. Within this Division, I lead or co-lead a number of environmental monitoring programs and research projects focused on understanding the impact of human activities on the environment, including heavy metal pollution, climate change, and using isotopes to reveal the history of metal resource extraction and use. Prior to this position I held research positions at Yale University and the University of Sydney. My appointment as an Adjunct Professor provides me the opportunity to collaborate with professors, graduate students, and researchers. I have a long history conducting research in the mountains, especially in the Canadian Rockies and the South American Andes. Over the years, this work has been funded by the National Geographic Society and NSERC.

Selected Publications

Cooke, C.A., J.L. Kirk, D.C.G. Muir, J.A. Wiklun, X. Wang, A. Gleason, M.S. Evans (2017) “Spatial and Temporal Patterns in Trace Element Deposition to Lakes in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region (Alberta, Canada).” Environmental Research Letters.

Cooke, C.A., C. Schwindt, M. Davies, E. Azim, and W.F. Donahue (2016) “Initial Environmental Impacts of the Obed Mountain Coal Mine Process Water Spill into the Athabasca River (Alberta, Canada).” Science of the Total Environment 557: 502–590.

Uglietti, C., P. Gabrielli, C.A. Cooke, P. Vallelonga, and L.G. Thompson (2015) “Widespread pollution of the Andean atmosphere predates the industrial revolution by centuries.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 112: 2349–2354

Engstrom, D.R., W.F. Fitzgerald, C.A. Cooke, C.H. Lamborg, P.E. Drevnick, E.B. Swain, S.J. Balogh, P.H. Balcom (2014)” Atmospheric Hg emissions from preindustrial gold and silver extraction in the Americas: a reevaluation from lake-sediment archives.” Environmental Science & Technology 48: 6533–6543.

Reyes A.V. and C.A. Cooke (2011) “Northern peatland initiation lagged abrupt increases in deglacial atmospheric CH4.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 108: 4748–4753.

Cooke, C.A., P.H. Balcom, H. Biester, and A.P. Wolfe (2009) “Over three millennia of mercury pollution in the Peruvian Andes.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 106: 8830–8834.