Opio, Dr. Christopher

Dr. Christopher Opio
BScF University of New Brunswick, MEDes University of Calgary, PhD University of Alberta Professor
Email: Phone:
  • Prince George


Dr. Christopher Opio is a Full Professor in Ecosystem Science and Management Program at the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC). He continues to have a full teaching load, do research, publish and supervise both graduate and undergraduate students. Dr. Opio also serves on several committees at UNBC. His research interests include forest science, land reclamation, environmental science, agroforestry and water purification using plants. Dr. Opio’s current research examines the effects of Moringa (Moringa oleiferia) root powder on of E. coli in drinking water.

After obtaining his BSc in Forestry at UNB, Dr. Opio continued with his further studies and obtained a Masters’ degree in Environmental Science from the University of Calgary and a PhD in Agroforestry from the University of Alberta. Dr. Opio has been able to integrate effectively his two passions: research and teaching in the fields of forest science, agroforestry and environmental science; and his passion for humanitarian work. He has published extensively in these areas.

Dr. Opio has received many local, national and international awards and recognition for his outstanding scholarly and humanitarian contributions. In 2014, Dr. Opio was invited to give a presentation and participate as a discussion leader in a Round Table Discussion Group on Environment, Sustainability and Climate Change at University of Oxford, UK. He was inducted as a member of the Group.

In 2012, Dr. Opio was awarded Professor (Academic) of the Year by Confederation of University Faculty Association, British Columbia (CUFA-BC) to recognize his research that benefits society at large. In 2011, he was awarded Alumni Award of Excellence by the University of Alberta, for his humanitarian work in Northern Uganda. In 2015, Dr. Opio was awarded Alumni Award of Distinction by the University of New Brunswick for his outstanding scholarly contributions to society.

In 2010, Dr. Opio was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 10 Volunteers doing humanitarian work and was honored with Canada’s Champions of Change Award by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). In 2010, he was awarded a Global Hero Award by Verge Magazine for distinguished service.

The City of Prince George also honored Dr. Opio with a Certificate of Recognition in 2011 for his NUDF work. In 2015, he received Prince George’s Healthier You Award, for outstanding contribution to a multicultural society.

Dr. Opio is a well-known professor and a leader in fighting global poverty. He is the Founder, President and CEO of the Northern Uganda Development Foundation (NUDF), a registered Canadian charity organization with the mission of improving the well-being of the people of Northern Uganda through research, service delivery, and empowerment of the local people in the region. Since 2007, NUDF has built over 100 clean and safe drinking water wells that serve over 120, 000 people in Northern Uganda.

Dr. Opio’s leadership is also felt in the community he resides and in Uganda. He gives talks to thousands of elementary and high school students on social responsibility, water conservation, need to stay focused at school, and volunteerism. Dr. Opio encourages the students to stay in school, work hard, and make their dreams a reality. He nurtures and inspires children, teens, young adults and the community at large to be active citizens both locally and globally.

Research and Expertise

Dr. Opio's research interests include forestry, environmental science, land reclamation, agroforestry and use of moringa tree in water purification.

Research Fields:
  • Agroforestry
  • Environment
  • Forestry
  • Natural Resources
Areas of Expertise:

Forestry (silviculture, height to diameter ratio), agroforestry (reclamation, sheep vegetation management), use of moringa tree to purify drinking water, water well management in rural Africa

Languages Spoken:
  • English
Not accepting graduate students
Supervises in:
  • PhD NRES
  • MSc NRES Forestry
  • MSc Environmental Science
Available to be contacted by the media as a subject matter expert

Selected Publications

Morgan, C.R., Opio, C and Migabo, S. 2020. Chemical composition of Moringa (Moringa oleifera) root powder solution and effects of Moringa root powder on E. coli growth in contaminated water. South African Journal of Botany. 129:243-248.

Oduro Appiah, J., Opio, C and Donnelly, S. 2020. Measuring forest change patterns from oil and gas land use dynamics in northeastern British Columbia, 1975 to 2017. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment192 (1), 1-18.

Oduro Appiah, J., Opio, C and Donnelly, S. 2020. Quantifying, comparing, and contrasting forest change pattern from shale gas infrastructure development in the British Columbia’s shale gas plays. International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology27 (2), 114-128.

Opio, C and Fredj, K. 2018. Boosting forest income to improve food security: A SWOT analysis of tree nursery project in Northern Uganda. Journal of Architectural and Planning Research, 35(3):235-243.

Bergeson, T.L., Opio, C and MacMillan, P.D. 2016. Crop ash filtrate influence on cooking time and sensory preferences for dried black beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). African Journal of Food Science 10(8):132-142. DOI:10.5897/AJFS2016.1456. ISSN 1996-0794. http:/www.acdemicjournals.org/AFJFS

Bergeson T.L., Opio, C and Arocena, J.M. 2016. Elemental composition and potential health impacts of Phaseolus vulgaris L ash and its filtrate used for cooking in Northern Uganda. African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development 16(4):11351-11366. DOI:10.18697/ajfand.76.16170. ISSN 1684 5374.

Serra, R., Opio, C and  Khasa, D.P. 2014. Sheep vegetation management for controlling competing vegetation in young conifer plantations in the central interior of British Columbia, Canada. Agroforest Syst 88:569-578.

Cho, D.I., Ogwang,T and  Opio, C. 2010. Simplifying the water poverty index. Social Indicators Research 97:257-267.

Opio, C., Fredj, K and Wang, B. 2009. Profitability of manual brushing in young lodgepole pine plantations. BC Journal of Ecosystems and Management 10(1):15-21. www.forrex.org/publications/jem/ISS50/vol10_no1_art3.pdf

Opio, C., Van Diest, K and Jacob, N.  2003. Intra-seasonal changes in height to diameter ratios for lodgepole pine in the central interior of British Columbia. Western Journal Applied Forestry, 18 (1): 52-59

Arocena, J.M and Opio, C.  2003. Prescribed fire-induced changes in properties of sub-boreal forest soils. Geoderma, 113: 1-6.

Opio, C., Jacob, N and Khasa, D.P. 2001. Factors affecting a sheep vegetation management system in British Columbia, Canada. Agroforestry Systems, 53: 305 -312.

Opio, C., Jacob, N and Coopersmith, D. 2000. Height to diameter ratio as a competition index for young conifer plantations in northern British Columbia, Canada. Forest Ecology and Management, 137 (1-3): 245-252

Curriculum Vitae

PDF icon Dr. Christopher Opio's CV