Elizabeth Levac


I am an earth scientist with a broad training and even broader research interests. I hold a PhD in Earth Sciences from Dalhousie and my area of expertise was paleoclimatology and paleoceanography. For my dissertation, I used dinoflagellate cysts to address paleoceanographic questions in the North Altantic and I used pollen to track changes in the vegetation of Eastern Canada. I still have ongoing projects in paleoceanography, examining the causes and the impacts of the Younger Dryas and other abrupt climatic events of the last deglaciation.

During grad school, I specialized in palynology because it is a very versatile tool  with applications in many fields. During a postdoctoral fellowship, I monitored pollen concentrations in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and I implemented a monitoring program in Sherbrooke, Qc.  I now studying the impact of airborne pollen concentrations on people`s health in Sherbrooke Qc and the long distance transport of pollen.

Academic Positions

  • Present2016

    Full Professor

    Bishop’s UniversityEnvironment and Geography department

  • 20162009

    Associate Professor

    Bishop’s University

  • 20092005

    Assistant Professor

    Bishop’s University

  • 20052005

    Postdoctoral Fellow

    St. Mary’s University
    Biology department

  • 20032001

    Visiting assistant professor

    St. Francis Xavier University
    Geology department

Education & Training

  • Ph.D. 2005

    Postdoc Fellowship

    St. Mary’s University

  • Ph.D. 1998-2002

    Ph.D. in Earth Sciences

    Dalhousie University

  • M.Sc. 1996

    Master of Science in Earth Sciences


  • B.Sc. 1992

    Bachelor of Science in Physical Geography


Awards and Grants

  • 2007-2012
    NSERC discovery grant
    details: Title: Abrupt Climatic Changes and Meltwater Discharges along the Eastern   Canadian Margin. ($109,000)
  • 2007
    NSERC Research Tools and Instrument, Category 1
    details: Title: Acquisition of a microscope and a microwave digester for the study of   abrupt climatic events in the last 11,000 years  ($19,250)
  • 2011-2013
    FQRNT Regroupements stratégiques Program for the GC3 center
    details:  Fonds québécois de la recherche sur la nature et les technologies  (Quebec   Science Funding Council Research Network Program), “Global Environmental and Climate   Change Centre” $100,000, (PI Chmura with 55 others)
  • 2010-2012
    FQRNT Network Grant awarded to GEC3
    Details: (Total grant $320,000)
  • 2016
    Health and Well-Being Research Cluster, Bishop’s University, Seed Grant (
    Details: Title: The link between air pollution and emergency visits in Sherbrooke,   between 2007 and 2009. Principal Investigator: E. Levac, Co-investigator: L. Zubieta
  • 2015
    Bishop’s University Senate Research Committee Research Grant
    Details: Title: The relationship between airborne pollen concentrations and emergency   visits in Sherbrooke, between 2007 and 2009.  Principal Investigator: E. Levac, Co-  investigator: L. Zubieta
  • 2012
    Environment Canada research contract
    Details: Title: International Literature Review of Prediction Methods of Airborne Pollen   Concentrations ($8000)
  • 2008-2009
    Bishop’s University Senate Research Committee grant
    Details: Title: Long-Distance Pollen Transport to the High Canadian Arctic: Identify the   Sources and the Role of Air Mass Circulation Patterns ($3660)
  • 2007
    Eastern Township Research Centre (ETRC) grant
    Details: Title: The health impact of airborne allergens (pollen and spores) specific to a   rural setting ($5000)