Hemmera Celebrates Education Week: Science Jam

Check out these photos of Hemmera celebrating Science Jam with more than 550 students at the Aberdeen Centre Mall!

Science Jam is the largest non-competitive science fair in BC with 270+ projects from more than 550 kids.

Hemmera’s New Business Leaders Yukon and Victoria

Kurt Neunherz, BIE (Applied), Business Leader, Site Assessment and Remediation

Hemmera is pleased to announce the additional of our newest member of Yukon’s leadership team: Kurt Neunherz.

Kurt is a Senior Environmental Scientist and Business Leader at Hemmera with over 17 years of experience managing contaminated sites, environmental site assessments, Plan of Restoration (POR) development, remediation of soil and groundwater, emergency spill response, regulatory permitting, and managing short-term and long-term liability for clients. Kurt has a strong understanding of the regulatory process in Yukon, including representing clients at regulatory meetings and assisting them through the permitting and Yukon Environmental and Socio Economic Assessment Board process.

Michael Muller, M.Sc., P.Biol., R.P.Bio., Business Leader, Northern Projects

Please join us in congratulating Michael Muller who is now Hemmera’s Business Leader, Northern Projects.

Michael brings our clients more than 20 years of project and regulatory experience completing projects in Northern Canada. Throughout his career, Michael has developed detailed insight into and intimate knowledge of the assessment process in Yukon. In addition to designing and implementing baseline programs, writing effects assessments, and reviewing hundreds of project proposals, Michael has also either led or supervised the development of proponent guidance outlining proposal information requirements.

Michael has supported assessments on behalf of proponents, assessment organizations, and governments for a wide range of projects in the mining, petroleum, energy, municipal infrastructure, and contaminated sites sectors. He has participated in local and regional programs to collect baseline data, engaged in community consultation, analyzed assessment findings, and produced proposal documentation in support of assessment and regulatory processes.

Claire Lewis, P.Eng., Business Leader, Vancouver Island Projects

Hemmera is pleased to announce that Claire Lewis is now Hemmera’s Business Leader of Vancouver Island Projects.

Claire is a professional engineer with 18 years of experience in environmental investigation and management, contaminated sites remediation and redevelopment, engineering design, and solid waste management. Claire’s project experience includes working on more than 400 industrial, municipal, commercial, and private properties in BC and Ontario. Frequently managing multiple concurrent projects for a client, Claire has a demonstrated ability to coordinate large and diverse project teams, identify and respond to client needs and risks, manage internal and external communications, and identify opportunities for shared value between projects. She has also served as the lead technical engineer for several large remediation and solid waste management projects, overseeing concept design, detailed specifications, tendering, construction activities, and final inspections.

Get To Know: Mike Peckford, Renewable Energy and Wildlife Lead

Mike Peckford, Renewable Energy and Wildlife Lead

“At Hemmera, we don’t try and be something that we are not. We know what we are good at, and we focus on those areas.”

Mike Peckford is Hemmera’s Renewable Energy and Wildlife Lead in the Environmental Planning and Ecology group in Calgary, AB. He specializes in bird and bat ecology, environmental assessments, and permitting strategy and application preparation for Alberta’s major renewable energy developers.  Mike’s experience includes over 60 wind facility projects across North America from environmental assessment and permitting through to project construction, operation, and maintenance.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

A typical day at Hemmera is fast paced and diverse. It can range for helping clients work through permitting challenges, writing and reviewing reports or proposals, and mentoring junior staff to help them grow their careers.

Why Hemmera?

I chose to return to the consulting industry to become more involved in the renewable energy rush that is currently happening in AB and SK. Hemmera’s reputation as a leader in renewable energy in western Canada made the decision to choose Hemmera an obvious one.

Describe a memorable “Hemmera moment.”

I don’t really have a single moment. But when I think of Hemmera, I think of the people I work with more than the work itself.  We have a great team in Calgary. Everyone pitches in when needed, shares work loads, and has a great attitude – even during stressful times.

What do you think clients like about Hemmera?

At Hemmera, we don’t try and be something that we are not. We know what we are good at, and we focus on those areas. Hemmera understands that if you try and be everything to everyone, you’ll lose focus on your core strengths. I think our clients appreciate that approach, and it allows them to be confident that the work we are doing for them will be professional and high quality.

What has made you so committed to this field?

I’ve worked in the field of renewable energy for the past 10+ years. I feel strongly about giving back to society and making a positive difference. I feel I can best make that difference by helping us reduce our fossil fuel dependency, and move towards more sustainable sources of electricity. My position at Hemmera allows me to make this positive difference.

Spotlight Hemmeras Spill Response Team

Accidents happen. It’s how we respond to them that matters most, especially when it comes to accidental spills in terrestrial, aquatic, and marine environments.

From the onset of a spill through to post-spill assessment and remediation, Hemmera’s spill response team will help you rapidly and effectively respond to environmental emergencies.. In those critical hours following an incident, we arrive onsite to assess the release and recommend response actions. In the days and weeks following the spill, we assess the extent of impacts to vegetation, wildlife, fish, and other receptors, and carefully collect verification samples to document the success of cleanup efforts. In addition to our in-house team, we have assembled a trusted group of subcontractors and have subcontract agreements in place to provide additional hands-on support to guide the collective spill response effort.

Experience has proven that successful spill response comes from effective communication between our clients, our teams of spill response experts, as well as legal advisors, regulatory representatives, and other parties as circumstances require. We also understand how imperative it is to characterize a spill as quickly and thoroughly as possible. Our team has extensive experience either leading spill response teams or serving as major contributors to client-led teams. Our inclusive approach ensures we can help our clients minimize the extent of a spill while collecting and sharing quality data and accurate information to help restore environmental balance.

Our team

Our team members have been involved in a significant number of spills for a variety of clients, including Hydro One, Imperial Oil, Chevron, BC Hydro, and Enbridge.

Jason Azzam, Senior Spill Preparedness and Response Specialist: As an accredited environmental professional (EP, EMS-LA) Jason brings over 13 years of industry and consulting experience in Canada and internationally. Jason has managed and led spill preparedness and response planning; Environmental Management System development and auditing (ISO 14001); Green House Gas Verifications; Towards Sustainable Mining Verifications; Sustainability Reporting Verifications; Human health and ecological risk assessments; contaminated site investigations; and environmental assessments for clients..

Darrell Desjardin, Vice President, Ports and Infrastructure: Darrell offers our clients more than 28 years of experience in the environmental, ports, and marine sectors. He has led multi-disciplinary teams to conduct major environmental assessments, air quality inventories, and risk assessments, while directing spill response plans and efforts and developing emission reduction strategies.

Doug Bright, Practice Leader, Environmental Risk Assessment: Backed by 25 years of experience managing and contributing to environmental planning and approvals processes, Dr. Bright’s work focuses on assessment of contaminant fate and effects, soil quality, and water quality, as well as human health and ecological risk. Doug has a strong working relationship with regulators in BC and Alberta, and has conducted extensive research on relevant projects funded by the Alberta Upstream Petroleum Research Fund, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, as well as the BC Oil and Gas Research and Innovation Society program.



A key tool in Hemmera’s spill response capabilities is our toll-free, 24-hour, 365-day emergency response call-in number for all of our clients, enabling us to immediately mobilize our team of experienced staff at a moment’s notice.


Hemmera Welcomes Senior Expert Mark Milner

Meet Mark Milner, Hemmera’s new Atmospheric Services Lead

Hemmera is pleased to introduce the newest member of our Burnaby-based team. Mark Milner is a senior atmospheric engineer with 28 years of administrative and consulting experience in air quality, noise, and light assessments within the mining, oil and gas, industrial, transportation, and forestry sectors. He presently specializes in environmental assessments, permitting studies, emissions estimates, air dispersion and noise modeling, and ambient monitoring. Mark has provided technical work, project management, and review on numerous air quality, noise, and light projects, including modeling and monitoring programs to assess local and regional impacts, development of large-scale emission inventories, as well as mitigation and control technology option analyses for corporations within BC and internationally. Mark is known for building strong client relationships and effectively developing new business, and is keen to help grow our atmospheric services with Ron Haley while expanding Hemmera’s regional profile.

Service Lead – BC
Mark Milner
Project Director, Atmospheric Sciences

Get To Know: Julie vanTol, Environmental Engineer


“At Hemmera, there is great structure and mentorship, and everyone is really approachable and helpful. Hemmera has a great team of people and atmosphere and we all really enjoy working together.”

Julie vanTol is a Professional Engineer and Project Manager in the Site Assessment and Remediation group in Calgary, AB. She works on remediation projects in the oil and gas, land development, transportation, and government sectors, on a variety of land uses across western Canada. Julie’s project experience includes spill response, environmental due diligence and environmental peer review, Phase I/II/III Environmental Site Assessments, and managing regulatory approvals for clients.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

A typical work day may include internal staff meetings, client meetings, writing proposals, project management activities, writing reports, setting up and managing programs, and mentoring staff and career development activities.

What is your favorite project and why is it your favourite?

One of my favorite clients is a downstream oil and gas client. We do a lot of Phase I/II/IIIs for them at their gas station/bulk fuel sites. We get a variety of experience and we have a great working relationship with the client.

Why Hemmera?

I started my career at a small consulting company who were bought by a large consulting company. I really missed the small company feel and have found that again at Hemmera. At Hemmera, there is great structure and mentorship, and everyone is really approachable and helpful. Hemmera has a great team of people and atmosphere and we all really enjoy working together.

Describe a memorable “Hemmera moment.”

The social events are always memorable at Hemmera! No one in particular stands out over another, but we always have a great time, whether it be family BBQs, Calgary Stampede events, after-work bowling, fundraisers or holiday parties.