Picture of Bram Noble

Bram Noble B.A.(Hons.), M.E.S., Ph.D

Professor & Vice Dean Research, Scholarly and Artistic Work

Faculty Member in College Office
Faculty Member in Geography & Planning

Arts 229

Research Area(s)

  • Environmental impact assessment
  • Environmental policy and management
  • Mineral and energy resources
  • Cumulative effects assessment
  • Watershed planning and management
  • Renewable energy / energy transition

About me

I was born in the coastal mining town of Baie Verte, north central Newfoundland, Canada. I completed my Ph.D. in Geography, specializing in environmental assessment, at Memorial University of Newfoundland. I joined the University of Saskatchewan in 2002. I am currently Professor in the Department of Geography & Planning, and Vice Dean Research, Scholarly and Artistic Work in the College of Arts & Science. 

My research is in the field of environmental assessment, addressing issues and applications ranging from cumulative effects assessment and land use to resource policy and planning for mineral and energy development projects. I am co-director of the Community Appropriate Sustainable Energy Security (CASES) partnership, funded by a SSHRC Partnership Grant and project partners. CASES is an international research and knowledge mobilization initiative involving 15 northern and Indigenous communities and public and private sector project partners from Canada, Alaska, Sweden, and Norway. The overarching goal of this work is to co-create and broker the knowledge, understanding, and capacity to design, implement and manage renewable energy systems that support and enhance social and economic values in northern and Indigenous communities (https://renewableenergy.usask.ca/Projects/CASES.php).

I am also actively engaged in the professional practice of environmental assessment. I have been a consultant or advisor to several First Nations in relation to cumulative effects assessment and regulatory proceedings. I have also been a consultant to industry and various provincial, territorial, national and international agencies including Environment and Climate Change Canada, Yukon Environmental and Socioeconomic Assessment Board, Government of the Northwest Territories, Nalcor Energy, Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment, Impact Assessment Agency of Canada, National Energy Board, Office of Auditor General of Canada Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, and the International Atomic Energy Agency. In 2018-19 I was appointed to the Council of Canadian Academies Expert Panel on Integrated Natural Resource Management.

I currently serve as Editor-in-Chief for Environmental Management and on the editorial boards of Environmental Impact Assessment Review and Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal.


See: https://sites.google.com/view/bram-noble/publications

Select Publications

Noble BF. 2021. Strategic environmental assessment in Canada. In Fischer T, Gonzalez A. (Ed.), Handbook on Strategic environmental Assessment. London: : Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd.

Blakley J, Noble B, MacLean J. 2021. The scope and focus of cumulative effects and regional assessment. In Doelle M, Sinclair J (Eds.) The New Canadian Federal Impact Assessment Act. Irwin.

MacLean J, Noble B, Blakley J. 2021. Strategic and regional environmental assessments.  In Doelle M, Sinclair J (Eds.) The New Canadian Federal Impact Assessment Act. Irwin.

Noble BF, Blakley J. 2021. Assessing cumulative effects in strategic and regional-scale assessment. In Blakley J,  Franks D (Eds.) Handbook of Cumulative Impact Assessment. Edward Elgar Publishing UK

Noble BF, Hanna K. 2021. Cumulative impact monitoring: Improving practices for informed decisions. NWT Environmental Research Bulletin 5(19): https://www.enr.gov.nt.ca/en/services/nwt-cumulative-impact-monitoring-program-nwt-cimp/nwt-environmental-research-bulletin 

McMaster R, Noble BF, Poelzer G, Hanna K. 2020. Wind energy environmental assessment requirements and processes: an uneven landscape. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal https://doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2020.1815271 

Peletz N, Hanna K, Noble BF. 2020. The central role of Inuit Qaujimaningit in Nunavut’s impact assessment process.  Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal. https://doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2020.1786763 

Thiessen B, Noble BF, Hanna K. 2020. Analysis of impact assessment practice and mitigation for shipping activity in the eastern Canadian Arctic. Arctic, 73(2): https://doi.org/10.14430/arctic70471 

Noble BF. 2019. Transforming IA from the outside in: Capacity and levers for strategic assessment. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal. https://doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2019.1664811 

Wong L, Noble BF, Hanna K. 2019. Water quality monitoring to support cumulative effects assessment and decision-making in the Mackenzie Valley, Northwest Territories, Canada. Integrated Environmental Assessment & Management 15(6): 988-999. 

Morrison A, Noble BF, Westbrook CJ. 2019. Flood risk management in Canada’s Prairie provinces: An analysis of decision-maker priorities and policy preferences. Environmental Management 64(5): 608-625 

Bradford L, Thapa A, Duffy A, Hassanzadeh E, Strickert G, Noble BF, Lindenschmidt K-L. 2019. Incorporating social dimensions in hydrological and water-quality modeling to evaluate the effectiveness of agricultural beneficial management practices in a Prairie river basin. Environmental Science and Pollution Research. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-019-06325-1)   

Arnold L, Hanna K, Noble B. 2019. Freshwater cumulative effects and environmental assessment in the Mackenzie Valley, Northwest Territories: challenges and decision-maker needs. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal. https://doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2019.1596596

Noble BF, Gibson R, White L, Blakley J, Nwanekezie K, Croal P. 2019. Effectiveness of strategic environmental assessment in Canada under directive-based and informal practice. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal. https://doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2019.1565708 Special issue – invited paper.

Hanna K, McGuigan E, Noble BF, Parkins J. 2019. An analysis of the state of impact assessment research for low carbon power production: what do we really know? Energy Research and Social Science 50: 116-128.

Hassanzadeh E, Strickert G, Morales-Marin L, Noble BF, Baulch H, Shupena-Soulodre E, Lindenschmidt K. 2019. A framework for engaging stakeholders in water quality modeling and management: Application to the Qu'Appelle River Basin, Canada. Journal of Environmental Management 231: 1117-1126.

Crowley C, Blakley J, Jaeger J, Noble BF, Westman C. 2018. Improving uncertainty disclosure and communication in environmental assessment: Lessons from an energy development case in northern Alberta. Journal of Environmental Planning and Management. In press. doi.org/10.1080/09640568.2019.1579973

Hansen AM, Larsen SV, Noble BF. 2018. Social and environmental impact assessments in the Arctic. In M Nuttall et al. (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of the Polar Regions. Routledge 

Luke L, Noble BF. 2018. Consideration of climate change in environmental assessment (EA): An analysis of the liquefied natural gas sector, British Columbia. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal. https://doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2018.1533515

Noble BF, Hanna K, Blakley J. 2018. Northern environmental assessment. In Resources and Sustainable Development in the Arctic. C Southcott et al. (eds.). Taylor and Francis. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781351019101 

Dibo A, Noble BF, Sanchez L. 2018. Perspectives on driving changes in project-based cumulative effects assessment for biodiversity: lessons from the Canadian experience. Environmental Management. 62(5):929-941

Cronmiller J, Noble BF. 2018. The discontinuity of cumulative effects monitoring in the Lower Athabasca region of Alberta, Canada: Institutional challenges to long-term monitoring and cumulative effects management. Environmental Reviews https://doi.org/10.1139/er-2017-0083

Cronmiller J, Noble BF. 2018. Integrating environmental monitoring with cumulative effects management and decision making. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management https://doi.org/10.1002/ieam.4034.

Noble BF. 2018. Uncertainty in environmental impact assessment: out of sight, out of mind? Guest Statement, in Resource and Environmental Management, 3rd edition. B. Mitchell (ed.) Oxford University Press 

Hackett P, Liu J, Noble BF. 2018. Human health, development legacies, and cumulative effects: Environmental assessments of hydroelectric projects in the Nelson River watershed, Canada. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal doi.org/10.1080/14615517.2018.1487504

Morrison A, Noble BF, Westbrook CJ. 2018. Flood risk management in the Canadian Prairie provinces: Defaulting toward flood resistance and recovery versus resilience. Canadian Water Resources Journal https://doi.org/10.1080/07011784.2018.1428501

Pavlyuk O, Noble BF, Blakley J, Jaeger J. 2017. Fragmentary provisions for uncertainty disclosure and consideration in EA legislation, regulations and guidelines and the need for improvement. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 66: 14-23.

Morrison A, Westbrook CJ, Noble BF. 2017. A review of the flood risk management governance and resilience literature. Journal of Flood Risk Management doi:10.1111/jfr3.12315

Noble BF, Nwanekezie K. 2017. Conceptualizing strategic environmental assessment. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 62: 165-173

Chilima J, Gunn J, Noble BF, Patrick R. 2017. Institutional arrangements for assessing and managing cumulative effects to watersheds: Lessons from the Grand River watershed, Ontario, Canada. Canadian Water Resources Journal doi.org/10.1080/07011784.2017.1292151

Noble BF, Liu G, Hackett P. 2017. The contribution of project environmental assessment to assessing and managing cumulative effects: individually and collectively insignificant? Environmental Management 59(4): 531-545.

Udofia A, Noble BF, Poelzer G. 2017. Meaningful and efficient? Exploring the challenges to Aboriginal participation in environmental impact assessment. Environmental Impact Assessment Review doi.org/10.1016/j.eiar.2016.04.008.

Ridsdale R, Noble BF. 2016. Assessing sustainable remediation frameworks using sustainability principles. Journal of Environmental Management 184: 36-44

Udofia A, Noble, BF, Poelzer G. 2016. Aboriginal Participation in Canadian Environmental Assessment: Gap Analysis and Directions for Scholarly Research. Journal of Environmental Assessment Policy and Management 18(3): doi/abs/10.1142/S1464333216500204

Leung W, Noble B, Jaeger J, Gunn J. 2016. Disparate perceptions about uncertainty consideration and disclosure practices in environmental assessment and opportunities for improvement. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 57: 89-100

Sizo A, Noble BF, Bell S. 2016. Connecting the strategic to the tactical in SEA design: an approach to wetland conservation policy development and implementation in an urban context. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal 34(1): 44-54

Lees J, Jaeger J, Gunn J, Noble BF. 2016. Analysis of uncertainty consideration in environmental assessment: an empirical study of Canadian EA practice. Journal of Environmental Planning and Management 59(11): 2024-2044.

Sizo A, Noble BF, Bell S. 2015. Strategic environmental assessment framework for landscape-based, temporal analysis of wetland change in urban environments. Environmental Management 57(3): 696-710.

Noble BF. 2015. Cumulative effects research: Achievements, status, directions and challenges in the Canadian context. Journal of Environmental Assessment Policy and Management 17(1): 7 pgs DOI: 10.1142/S1464333215500015

Fischer T, Noble BF. 2015. Impact assessment research: Achievements, gaps and future directions. Journal of Environmental Assessment Policy and Management 17(1): 12 pgs DOI: 10.1142/S1464333215010012

Noble BF, Basnet P. 2015. Capacity for watershed cumulative effects assessment and management in the South Saskatchewan Watershed, Canada. Canadian Water Resources Journal 40(2): 187-203

Udofia A, Noble BF, Poelzer G. 2015. Community engagement in environmental assessment for resource development: benefits, enduring concerns, opportunities for improvement. Northern Review 39: 98-110 [Invited paper]

Noble BF, Hanna K. 2015. Arctic environmental assessment: A gap analysis and research agenda. Arctic 68(3): 15pgs

Hanna K, Noble BF. 2015 Using a Delphi study to identify effectiveness criteria for impact assessment. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal 33(2): 116-125.

Sizo A, Noble BF, Bell S. 2015. Futures analysis of urban land use and wetland change in Saskatoon, Canada: An application in strategic environmental assessment. Sustainability. doi:10.3390/su60x000x

Leung W, Noble BF, Gunn K, Jaeger J. 2015. A review of uncertainty research in impact assessment. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 50:116-123.


Northern and Indigenous communities cumulative effects assessment energy policy energy resources environmental impact assessment environmental planning and manaegment environmental policy renewable energy strategic environmental assessment sustainable mining