College of Agriculture & Natural Resources
Environmental Science & Technology

Research Printouts

Blue Carbon: Linking Climate Change to Coastal Wetland Restoration and Conservation (Dr. Brian Needelman)

Professor Brian Needelman has been researching how coastal wetland restoration and conservation can be used to help reduce greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Coastal wetlands- which include salt marsh, seagrass, mangroves and other tidal wetlands- are some of the most productive habitats in the world. In addition to providing critical fish habitat, improving water quality, and protecting the coastline from storms, coastal wetlands also remove large amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere through photosynthesis. This carbon- referred to as “blue carbon”- is then stored in wetland soils, where it can remain for centuries or more, as long as the habitat is not degraded or destroyed.

Using Plants to Monitor the Health of the Environment (Dr. Wendy Peer)

As the climate is changing with warmer winters, cooler summers, and
more springtime ozone levels, the amount of stress experienced by organisms increases. This stress leads to reactive oxygen species (ROS)
which can cause cell damage and disease. ROS can also induce normal
signalling pathways to stimulate defense responses. Monitoring for increased ROS, markers associated with ROS, and growth, development
and fitness will help understand the impacts of our changing climate on
organisms in the environment.

Cutting-Edge Computer System as Wastewater Treatment Method (Dr. Mitch Pavao-Zuckerman)

Urban growth generates many environmental challenges on ecology, hydrology, and human health, including storm water runoff, water quality, flooding, urban heat island effects, increased air pollution, and habitat loss. These impacts occur against a broader backdrop of resource limitation, sustainability, and resilience challenges. The growth and health of cities thus requires a continuing investment in infrastructure and will ultimately require new holistic strategies technological, social, and political - to adapt growing cities to these environmental challenges. Dr. Mitch Pavao-Zuckerman has a green infrastructure research and outreach program that focuses on ecological processes, decision-making, design, and planning in cities

Green Infrastructure and Ecosystem Services in Cities (Dr. Patrick Kangas)

Water, the world’s most precious resource, will soon get a breath of fresh life thanks to graduate student David Blersch’s research into wastewater treatment methods. An ecological engineering graduate student in the Department of Environmental Science and Technology (ENST), David is designing a new computerbased system that will treat wastewater via an algal turf scrubber treatment. The fi rst system to operate autonomously without human interference, the algal turf scrubber, promises to cut operational expenses of water treatment - and strip pollutants and harmful nutrients from water.

Human Modification and Mosquito Invasions: Linking Ecosystem and Human Health (Dr. Paul Leisnham)

Professor Paul Leisnham, a native New Zealander or 'Kiwi', brings his latest research on mosquitoes and human health from 'down under' to Maryland. Human-induced environmental changes, such as land use modifi cation and climate change, have been linked to the reemergence of major diseases carried by mosquitoes, and offer classic examples of how disrupted ecosystems adversely affect human health.

Thermal, Hydrological, and Growth Properties of Green Wall Designs (Dr. David Tilley)

Covering building exteriors with vegetation has increased in popularity due in part to a desire to conserve energy and improve the environmental performance of buildings.

Low-cost Anaerobic Digesters (Dr. Stephanie Lansing)

Professor Stephanie Lansing researches lower-cost anaerobic digesters and co-digestion substrates to enhance the benefits of digestion technology, thereby, increasing the value of waste materials, such as domestic wastewater, manure, and food waste. Benefits of anaerobic digestion technology include renewable energy production, fertilizer creation, and sharp reductions in wastewater pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, and noxious odors.

Urban White-tailed Deer and Ticks: Movements, Densities,
and Lyme Disease 
(Dr. Jennifer Murrow)

Dr. Jennifer L. Murrow, wildlife ecology lecturer and advisor, is a spatial ecologist that studies animal habitat use, preferences, and movements across landscapes. She has over 10 years’ experience modeling ungulate and bear movements and habitat use in the eastern United States.

New Multi-Purpose Cover Crop to Enhance Environmental Quality (Dr. Ray Weil)

Professor Ray Weil and his team of graduate and undergraduate research assistants have been studying how an Asian vegetable used by no-till farmers in Brazil can help solve some of Maryland's most vexing environmental problems.

Bats and the City (Lecturer Shannon Pederson)

Bats in North America provide a valuable ecosystem service of limiting insect populations, which wreak havoc on agricultural crops and spread disease. Unfortunately, bats in the eastern and midwestern portion of the United States and Canada are threatened by disease. White Nose Syndrome (WNS), caused by the fungus Pseudogymnoascus destructans, decimated populations in New York starting in 2006 and has radiated across the United States and Canada. An Associate Wildlife Biologist and Lecturer, Shannon Pederson is studying urbanization’s impacts on bats in the White-Nose Syndrome Positive states of Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware.

Soil Judging - Perfected at the University of Maryland

Hapludult, redoximorphic feature, lithologic discontinuity – while these terms for soil sound foreign to most, a talented team of University of Maryland students know them well. In fact, the students, members of UM's Soil Judging Team, can describe, characterize, classify, and interpret a soil in 60 minutes.

Agricultural Nutrient Management Program (Trish Steinhilber)

The University of Maryland Extension's (UME) Agricultural Nutrient Management Program (ANMP), which is funded by the Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA), focuses on reducing pollution in the Chesapeake Bay from plant nutrients applied to cropland.

Environmental Fate and Effects of Pollutants (Dr. Daniel Fisher & Dr. Lance Yonkos)

Professors Daniel Fisher and Lance Yonkos have been studying the environmental fate and effects of reproductive steroids and antibiotics found in poultry litter and biosolids used as fertilizer for crops on the Delmarva Peninsula of Maryland. They have also been studying the effects of different tillage practices on surface runoff from these amended fields.

Ecosystem Services: Their Value, Markets and Payments (Dr. Bob Tjaden)

Have you ever considered that the cereal you eat is brought to you each morning by the wind, or that the glass of clear, cold, clean water drawn from your faucet may have been purified for you by a wetland or perhaps the root system of an entire forest? Trees in your front yard work to trap dust, dirt, and harmful gases from the air you breathe. Ecosystem services, the processes by which the environment produces resources, are little understood and too sophisticated to reproduce even with the most advanced technology. Extension Specialist Dr. Bob Tjaden has a research and educational interest in natural resource management and policy, with a special emphasis on forest and wildlife management, forest tax policy, environmental policy, and ecosystem services.

Tropical River Ecology & Sustainable Development (Dr. Patrick Kangas)

Research on tropical ecology and resource management has been conducted on a river in central Belize for nearly 20 years. An important focus for the work has been a travel-study course in which University of Maryland students visit Belize either over spring break or during the summer months. The course is taught by Dr. Patrick Kangas, an Associate Professor in the Department of Environmental Science and Technology.


 

Using Wildlife to Monitor the Health of the Environment (Dr. William Bowerman)

Professor William Bowerman has been working with bald eagles and other birds of prey, for over 27 years. He brings his experience with water quality monitoring and effects of climate change on wildlife from the Great Lakes to the Chesapeake Bay.

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