Ken W. F. Howard

MSc, PhD, PHG, PGeo, CGeol FGS

Groundwater Specialist / Hydrogeological Consultant / Expert Witness

Dr. Ken Howard is Professor of Hydrogeology
at the University of Toronto, in Canada,
where he is Director of the Groundwater Research Group
He is a hydrogeologist with over 30 years of professional experience in all aspects related to groundwater. He is:

a Chartered Geologist and Fellow of the
Geological Society of London (CGeol FGS),

• a Professional Geoscientist (PGeo) certified by the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario,

• a Professional Hydrogeologist (P.HG.) certified by the
American Institute of Hydrology.

In 2000, he was elected Regional Vice-President (North America) of the International Association of Hydrogeologists (IAH) and was re-elected to the same portfolio in 2004.
In 2008 he joined the IAH Executive following his election as IAH Vice-President responsible for Program and Science Coordination. In 2012 he relinquished this post when elected IAH President (and Chair of the IAH Board of Directors). He will hold this position for 4 years.

In 1997, he became Chair of the IAH Commission on Groundwater in Urban Areas (CGUA). In 2011 this Commission became the Urban Groundwater Network (
He is also a member of the IAH Commission on Karst Hydrogeology.
( )

Dr. Howard has wide international experience in all aspects of groundwater flow, contaminant transport and resource management and protection. He has worked on six continents publishing over 150 peer reviewed research articles, and four books (as editor - one “in press”). The books focus on hydrogeological problems in urban areas, and industrial centres and include impacts on ecosystems. He was recently invited to a specialised NATO workshop in Kazakhstan on Risk Assessment as a Tool for Environmental Decision-Making in Central Asia, and contributed to the published proceedings. His most recent research project is funded by Alberta Environment and involves the development of a 3-D transient groundwater flow model of a region close to the border with Saskatchewan.

Since the mid-1980’s Dr. Howard has maintained close involvement with the groundwater industry both nationally, and internationally. Between 1985 and 1988 he gave industry workshops on topics such as the “Release of hazards to the hydrosphere - risk analysis for waste management”, “Hydrogeological approaches to landfill site selection” and “Landfilling of Hazardous Wastes”. In the past 10 years, he has contributed regularly as opening, invited, expert lecturer for the GOWEN industry short course on Contaminated and Hazardous Waste Site Management a popular week-long course developed to service the USA/Canada groundwater industry (

In 2000, he was invited by Justice Denis O’Connor, Commissioner of the Walkerton Inquiry to attend the first formal day of the hearings and make presentations, as the first Environmental Expert Witness, on groundwater flow, contaminant transport and well protection. Subsequently he was retained by the Commission of the Walkerton Inquiry as peer reviewer for Part 2 of the Inquiry under the direction of Dr. Swain, Chair of the Research Advisory Panel.

Dr. Howard’s first major involvement with groundwater problems in southern Ontario dates back to the early 1980’s when initiated research on the Oak Ridges Moraine as a pre-cursor to the development of a regional 3-D groundwater flow model of the system. Since this time he has been regularly called upon to review documents, conduct assessments, provide advice and perform the responsibilities of an expert witness, notably on issues as they relate to groundwater impacted by land use change.

Ken W.F. Howard MSc, PhD, PHG, PGeo,CGeol FGS

Professor of Hydrogeology

 Dept. Physical and Environmental Sciences 
University of Toronto Scarborough
1265 Military Trail, Toronto 
Ontario, Canada M1C 1A4

University of Toronto

Office: SW-534, Telephone: 416-287-7233,
Fax: 416-287-7279

International Association of

IAH Urban Groundwater Network

International Association of
Hydrogeologists Canadian
National Chapter

Example Consulting Projects



Nature of Work


MacLaren Plansearch, Toronto, Ontario

Critical evaluation of geochemical databases.


Whitevale Residents' Association, southern Ontario

Review and evaluation of landfill site investigations including modeling of contaminant impacts.


Port Darlington and Community Residents' Association

Retained to review consultant's documents related to impacts associated wit the St. Mary's Cement Quarry, Darlington, Ontario and a proposed dock extension.


Falconbridge Ltd. Timmins, Ont.

Review and analysis of hydrogeological documentation related to a mine tailings pond.


P.O.W.E.R., Acton, Ontario

Retained to review consultant's reports related to the proposed Acton Quarry landfill site, on the Niagara Escarpment.


Riverwatch Environmental Group (Cayuga) Inc.

Critical Review and analysis of hydrogeological reports pertaining to the potential use of limestone quarries for the disposal of fly ash.


Concord Scientific Ltd., Toronto

Retained as sole hydrogeology member of a team charged by HELP, Alberta to perform a risk assessment and priority ranking for 5 seriously contaminated oil refinery sites. Responsible for interpretation and analysis of physical and chemical data related to soil and groundwater.


Toronto and District Heating Corporation

Review and analysis of reports concerning the impacts of leaking brine disposal tanks on shallow soils and groundwater


Canadian Environmental Collaborative (CEC Ltd)

Retained as hydrogeologist for the review of draft EA for Steetley Quarry Products Inc. south quarry landfill development.


UMA Engng., Ltd.

Development of a groundwater model for assessing the impacts of urban development on groundwater underlying the Oak Ridges Moraine, southern Ontario.


Beard, Winter, Barristers and Solicitors

Re: Krek vs. Knoppke. Retained as expert witness to review reports and documentation related to the contamination of soil, groundwater and lake water by leaking fuel tanks, Lake of Bays, Ontario.


Ernst and Young

Expert witness - provided evidence before the Environmental Appeal Board of Ontario re: alleged well interference in fractured rock, Muskoka, Ontario.


Cheadle, Shanks, Johnson and McIvor

Expert witness retained to review hydrogeological and hydrochemical data related to alleged contamination of well water by highway de-icing operations.


King City Residents’ Association, Ontario

Conducted hydrogeological assessment of potential water quality impacts resulting from a proposed highway extension.


Caledonia Mining Corporation

Shared responsibility for the development and supervision of a summer drilling and sampling program, NWT.


Beatty Franz and Associates

Urban sub-division development - responsible for hydrogeological assessment of potential impacts on groundwater quality and quantity, Stouffville, Ont.


Government of Ontario

Retained by legal counsel representing the Ontario Ministry of the Environment to advise on its defence against legal proceedings being brought against the Ministry in connection with alleged PAH contamination of well water by waste asphalt. Responsible for field data review, data collection, contaminant modeling, preparation of expert witness statements and presentation of expert testimony.


Cosburn, Patterson Mather Ltd.

Retained to perform water budget estimates and potential impact assessments in connection with urban development, Richmond Hill, Ontario. Also member of the Hydrogeologic Experts Panel convened to review hydrogeological requirements for the approval of urban development along the Oak Ridges Moraine. Attended 18 meetings over a two-year period. Findings presented to the OMB.


Martin Zaitzeff Scrimshaw

Hydrogeological review and evaluation of hydrogeological and hydrochemical data relating to the alleged groundwater contamination from highway road de-icing operations in Thunder Bay, Ontario


International Water Consultants Ltd, Barrie , Ontario

Attended meetings to provide critical review of regional groundwater models developed for resource management, Barrie Ontario.


Town of Pickering (Public Review Team - PRT)

Member of a Peer Review team assembled to assess OPG’s “Draft Scope of Assessment for an Environmental Assessment pursuant to the CEAA of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station “A”: Return to Service”. Responsible for all hydrogeological aspects of the review, report writing and presentations to Town Council.


Kramer and Henderson

Retained as expert witness to provide hydrogeological evidence in connection with house foundations damaged by infiltrating groundwater, Oakville Ontario.


Beatty Franz and Associates /Walker , Nott & Dragicevic Assoc. Ltd.

Retained to perform water budget estimates and develop a groundwater flow system model in connection with urban development Uxbridge, Ontario.


Consultant / Adviser to the Commissioner of the Walkerton Enquiry

Invited by Justice Denis O’Connor, Commissioner of the Walkerton Inquiry to attend the first formal day of the hearings and make presentations, as the first environmental expert witness, on groundwater flow, contaminant transport and well protection. Subsequently retained by the Commission of the Walkerton Inquiry as peer reviewer for Part 2 of the Inquiry under the direction of Dr. Swain, Chair of the Research Advisory Panel.


British Geological Survey

Retained to review documents and to standby as a potential expert witness in connection with a multi-billion $ class action law suit related to arsenic contamination of wells in Bangladesh.


North Oakville Management Inc.

Retained as hydrogeological expert to review reports, conduct water balance studies and develop groundwater models related to the potential impacts of proposed urban development, Oakville, Ontario.


City of Pickering

Provide hydrogeological advice re: a long-term program to remediate Frenchman's Bay, a shallow system seriously impacted by urban contaminants.


Ontario School Board’s Insurance Exchange

Hydrogeological review and evaluation of consultants’ documents related to groundwater contamination from an alleged spill of heating fuel , Uxbridge Ontario.


Temiskaming Federation of Agriculture - Adams Mine

Performed review and critical assessment of hydrogeological and modelling studies undertaken by industry consultants at the proposed Adams Mine Landfill site. Invited to Queen’s Park by the Honourable Leona Dombrowsky, Minister of the Environment and the Honourable David Ramsay, Minster of Natural Resources to present and discuss key findings. Within three months, the government introduced the Adams Mine Lake Act, 2004 to prohibit the use of lakes as landfill sites and prevent the use of the Adams Mine site as a landfill.


Peter D’Agostino - Pound Ridge Road Salt Impacts, Upper New York State, USA

Review of consultants reports re: alleged contamination of soil and groundwater due to road de-icing operations.


David Steele

Retained to conduct a review and critical analysis of hydrogeological aspects of the proposed Central Pickering Development Plan, southern Ontario


York Region

Retained as expert member of an independent, 6-person Peer Review Team charged with a comprehensive review and analysis of a wide range of projects connected with the expansion of the York-Durham Sewer (southern Ontario). Responsible for all hydrogeological aspects of the review including potential impacts of dewatering on groundwater, wells and streams.


Coalition of Concerned Citizens, Caledon, Ontario

Retained to conduct a review and critical analysis of hydrogeological studies conducted in support of the proposed Rockfort Quarry. Findings presented to the OMB.


South Georgetown Landowners Group (SGLG)

Georgetown Area Groundwater Assessment


Activa Holdings Inc.

Hydrogeologial investigations in connection with the Kitchener Lands west of Reidel
2009- CORE (Conserve Our Rural Environment)  Retained to conduct a review of hydrogeological studies conducted in support of the proposed Melanchton Quarry


Niagara Escarpment Commission Retained to conduct a review of hydrogeological studies conducted in support of the proposed Keppel Quarry extension

For information on Services, Availability and Fees

please contact
Ken Howard via e-mail:

Tel: 416-287-7233


Fax: 416-287-7279