Spring 2017 Community News

Jay Austin’s (LLO, WRS faculty) research was featured in the November 2, 2016 Great Lakes Echo:

“The Great Lakes sit in this sort of gap in between those two, and because of this, logistically they are much more difficult to study,” said Jay Austin, professor of physics and astronomy at University of Minnesota Duluth’s Large Lakes Observatory. “There isn’t an in-between solution for studying the ice on the Great Lakes, so most of what we know is from satellite data.” Austin coauthored a study that sought to solve the dilemma and that was published recently in the Journal of Great Lakes Research. http://greatlakesecho.org/2016/11/02/peering-beneath-great-lakes-ice/

John Gulliver (CE, WRS faculty) gave a keynote presentation, “LID Research in the USA,” at the Technology Advancement and Case Studies in Low Impact Development Seminar, University of Pusan, Busan, Korea, February 8 – 9, 2017. Gulliver also participated in the invited panel discussion, “Resilient Communities Project: Facilitating Local Sustainability and Experiential Learning through Community-University Partnerships,” City Engineers Association of Minnesota Conference, Brooklyn Center, MN, January 25-27, 2017.

Raymond Newman (Fisheries, WRS faculty) was featured in a Star Tribune article: Taking genetics to the lake: New study shows that fight against invasive plant is more complicated thanks to hybrids. "The battle to protect Minnesota lakes from invasive species just got more complicated after researchers on Lake Minnetonka discovered that a certain kind of watermilfoil is more resistant to herbicide treatments and becoming more abundant."

The Onsite Sewage Treatment Program received a MnDOT grant to investigate wastewater reuse at safety rest areas and truck stations. The project, which begins July 1, 2017, will evaluate the potential and effectiveness of wastewater reuse at MnDOT facilities. Researchers will evaluate when reuse makes sense from a regulatory, environmental, economic and management perspective at truck washing/storage facilities and safety rest areas.  Sampling of various streams will be done to identify challenges related to various uses.  Recommendations will be provided on the most appropriate applications for reuse and the challenges with implementation.

Opportunity for Faculty - Community Engaged Scholarship: The U of M Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (RSDP) seeks University faculty to serve on its regional boards. Tenure-track faculty are especially encouraged to apply. RSDP boards review and approve community projects seeking University connections, and provide valuable opportunities for faculty to connect with local innovation and sustainable development issues. Recent board members include Dr. David Mulla, Dept of Soil, Water, and Climate and Dr. Kent Olson, Applied Economics. Issues related to water resources are an important part of the work of the Partnerships, for example a recent project focused on protecting a cold-water refuge lake in Central Minnesota. Please consider joining one of our regional boards to support community-University partnerships in addressing the critical needs of communities in our state. Learn more in the board application found on the bottom of the RSDP home page.

Faye Sleeper retired from the Water Resources Center on April 14 after ten years of service. Faye has served in leadership roles in the WRC and Extension, including as Co-director, Interim Director, and most recently as Associate Director and Program Leader of the Extension Water Resources Team. As interim director, she ensured a smooth transition to a new leadership model, and over the past two years she has forged a growing partnership between the WRC and the Extension Water Resources Team. "We will remember Faye for her capable management of the WRC's training and Extension/outreach programs, for mentoring staff, and for strengthening connections to external stakeholders," said WRC director Jeff Peterson.

Robert Sterner (EEB UMD, WRS faculty) received the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO) Martin award.

The John H. Martin Award recognizes a paper in aquatic sciences that is judged to have had a high impact on subsequent research in the field. The 2017 Martin Award is for Algal nutrient limitation and the nutrition of aquatic herbivores by Robert Sterner and Dag Hessen. Sterner and Hessen (1994) created a major paradigm shift in our understanding of producer-consumer interactions and the biogeochemistry of C, N, and P, and is one of the founding contributions to the field of Ecological Stoichiometry.