The EcoBiomics Project: genomics research and development initiative

How Canada is using genomics technologies to study microbial biodiversity in soil and aquatic ecosystems.

Biodiversity defined

Biodiversity is the variety of life on planet Earth. Biodiversity ranges from large species like lions, to small species called microbes. Microbial biodiversity in soil and water maintain ecosystem services that support Canada's economy. Ecosystem services provide clean water, healthy crops and robust forests. 

The EcoBiomics Project

The Metagenomic-Based Ecosystem Biomonitoring (EcoBiomics) Project is part of the Genomics Research and Development Initiative. The EcoBiomics Project has been active since 2016 and will end in 2022. It is a collaboration between 7 federal governments and agencies.

Land use disturbances are adversely impacting microbial biodiversity in soil and aquatic ecosystems. Genomics tools are now recognized as the best way to examine these complex systems. The EcoBiomics Project uses advanced, genomics tools to characterize microbial biodiversity in soil and water. This allows for a better understanding of what microbes are present and how they interact with their environment. This knowledge will improve environmental assessment, monitoring, and remediation in Canada.

It has three main goals to help improve water quality and soil health in Canada:

Project sites

The EcoBiomics Project collects data from diverse sites in five provinces across Canada:

Within each province, there are a variety of environmental characteristics including boreal forest, riparian habitat, agricultural lands and transboundary lakes.

Our success stories

Related links

Contact us

Donald Baird, Project Co-Lead:

James Macklin, Project Co-Lead:

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