Research Interests and Publications
Douglas M. Joy, P.Eng





School of Engineering


Click here for curriculum vitae.

Research Interests

  • Bacterial Transport in Hydrologic Systems
  • River Processes On-site System Design and Regulation
  • Impact of On-site Systems on Ground and Surface Water Systems

Septic Systems

There are over 1 million septic systems in Ontario alone. The basic design and regulations for these have remained relatively unchanged for 40 years. High levels of rural groundwater contamination indicates that many of these systems are working below acceptable levels and changes are required to alleviate the problem. Our work is focused on helping to better define the degree of contaminant migration (especially bacterial contamination) from septic systems so that designs and regulations can be improved to a level which will significantly reduce contamination. Funding has come from the National Science and Engineering Research Council, Ontario Ministry of Environment and Energy, and Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.


A variety of projects have been undertaken that focused on hydrology. I recently evaluated and updated the Index Flood Method used by the Ontario Ministry of Transport for determining design flood flows for culverts and small bridges on ungauged watersheds. The updated version resulted in an improved and simplified method of estimating flows. Other recent projects have looked at the potential for power production on the Sechelt River in British Columbia, the History of Flooding in Ontario and the low flow characteristics of rivers in Malawi.

Contamination of Surface Water by Liquid Manure

Three years of field studies that examined the potential for land applied liquid manure to travel through the soil, into tile drains and then into surface waters have recently been completed. A variety of field conditions and spreading methods were tested with results ranging from no transport of bacteria through the soil system to transport through the soil system within minutes resulting in significant levels of surface water contamination.


Journal Articles

Drake, J., Bradford, A. and Joy, D. 2009, “Applications of HEC-RAS 4.0 water quality model to estimate and analyse groundwater contributions” paper submitted to the J. of Hydrology, Sep, 2009.

Drake, J., Bradford, A. and Joy, D., 2010, ”A multi-scale method for identifying groundwater exchanges sustaining critical thermal regimes in streams”, submitted to the Journal of River Basin Management, Accepted May 2010.

Howes, A. C. and Joy, D.M., 2008, “Accounting for backwater during low flows at gauging stations with seasonal vegetation effects” paper submitted to the Journal of Hydrological Engineering, ASCE, Dec, 2009

Hosseini, S.M. and Joy, D.M., 2007, “Development of an Unsteady Model for Flow Through Coarse Heterogeneous Porous Media Applicable to Valley Fills”, Intl. J. River Basin Man., 5(4):253-265

Hosseini, S.M. and Joy, D.M., 2006, “Calibration of Hydraulic Parameters for Flows Through Rockfill Structures”, Dam Engineering, 17(2):85-111.

Jamieson, R, Joy, D., Kostachuk, R., and Gordon, R., “Persistence of Enteric Bacteria in Alluvial Streams” paper accepted by the Journal of Environmental Sci. and Eng., Jan. 2004.

Jamieson, R, Joy, D., Kostachuk, R., and Lee, H., 2005, “Resuspension of Sediment-Associated Escherichia Coli In A Natural Stream”, J. Env. Qual., 34:581-589

Jamieson, R, Joy, D., Lee, H. Kostachuk, R., and Gordon, R., 2005, “Transport and Deposition of Sediment-Associated Escherichia Coli In Natural Streams”, Water Research, 39(12):2665-2675.

Jamieson, R, Joy, D., Kostachuk, R., and Gordon, R.,2004, “Persistence of Enteric Bacteria in Alluvial Streams” Journal of Env. Sci. and Eng., 3:203-212.

Jamieson, R, Gordon, R., Joy D., and Lee, H., 2004, “Assessing microbial pollution of rural surface waters: A review of current watershed scale modeling approaches”, J. Ag. Wat. Man., 70(1):1

Jamieson, R. Joy, D. J. “Survival of Bacteria in Stream Bed Sediments”, Env Eng and Sci. 2003

Click here for a list of other publications.

© Douglas Joy 2010