2024 Track 1 Day 1: Chiandet Priestman


Stormwater Monitoring: Piloting the Inclusion of Effluent Monitoring into Existing Long-Term Watershed Monitoring Program


Stormwater and wastewater effluent convey nutrients and harmful pollutants such as salt, pathogens, and contaminants of emerging concern into the Great Lakes, and management of effluents is therefore critical for protecting water quality, beaches and public health. Monitoring for impacts on receiving waters is a key component of this management.

A project to pilot the inclusion of monitoring for wastewater and stormwater effluent impacts into existing long-term monitoring programs in the Severn Sound watershed was conducted in 2023 by sampling for water quality and measuring flow during snow melt, wet and dry weather events at receiving tributary sites upstream and downstream of major stormwater and wastewater discharges.

The study findings showed relationships between contaminant loads and flow conditions and revealed spatial patterns in water quality that are linked to discharge locations.

For municipalities facing new requirements to monitor receiving waters for impacts as part of the Consolidated Linear Infrastructure Environmental Compliance Approval process, this pilot also demonstrated the benefit of using a shared service delivery approach (i.e., the Severn Sound Environmental Association as a Joint Municipal Service Board).


Aisha Chiandet

Aisha Chiandet, Severn Sound Environmental Association

Aisha completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Guelph, where she specialized in Water Resources and earned a master’s degree in the Watershed Ecosystems program at Trent University. Her master’s work focused on water quality and biological communities in stormwater management ponds.

Aisha has been a Water Scientist/Limnologist with the Severn Sound Environmental Association since 2009. Aisha’s role at SSEA focuses on water quality monitoring of lakes and tributaries in the Severn Sound watershed, a former Area of Concern, with a particular emphasis on nutrient conditions and responses of biological communities.

She has worked to increase understanding of water quality trends and impacts of watershed stressors and has developed citizen science programs to engage the public.

Nikki Priestman

Nikki Priestman, Severn Sound Environmental Association

Nikki Priestman graduated from Lakehead University with an Honors Bachelor of Arts and Science, Majoring in Environmental Sustainability, and also has an Advanced Diploma in Environmental Technology from Georgian College.

Nikki has been working with the Severn Sound Environmental Association since 2018. As a Watershed Health Specialist, she is responsible for managing SSEA’s network of climate and stream temperature monitoring sites, along with field logistics and conducting field work for SSEA’s numerous monitoring programs.