Fall 2016 Environmental Science Colloquium

August 10th, 2016 by June

Fall 2016 Colloquium Poster photoThe Center for the Environment announces speakers for the Fall 2016 Environmental Science Colloquium. The Colloquium series is for students, faculty, and the public and we invite all to come hear the latest on environmental science topics of interest to our region. The Colloquium presentations are held at 4-5 pm in Boyd Science Center, Room 001. We look forward to seeing you! For more information, please contact June Hammond Rowan.

September 14: Participatory Citizen Science Delivers the Data for Informed Local Decision-making and Watershed Stewardship – Jeff Schloss, Natural Resources Program Team Leader, UNH Cooperative Extension

September 28: Uncertainties in Detecting Decadal Change in Soil Carbon and Extractable Elements in Northern Forests – Olivia Bartlett, Department of Social Science, Plymouth State University & PhD candidate, Natural Resources and Earth System Sciences, University of New Hampshire

October 12: Got data? Using data to drive environmental public health planning and policy – Kathleen F. Bush, Senior Management Analyst, Bureau of Public Health Statistics and Informatics, NH DHHS/DPHS and Center for the Environment, Plymouth State University

October 26: Climate Communication Challenges for Meteorologists – Lisa Doner, Environmental Science & Policy Department and Center for the Environment, Plymouth State University

November 9: The 25-year Anniversary of the Perfect Storm – Jason Cordeira, Assistant Professor of Meteorology, Department of Atmospheric Science and Chemistry and Center for the Environment, Plymouth State University

November 30: 303(d)?!?! Dam…Not Me! River restoration through selective dam removal in New Hampshire – The Black Brook story and movie review – Steve Landry, Supervisor, Watershed Assistance Section, NH Department of Environmental Services

Two Master’s students Awarded Plan NH Scholarships

July 12th, 2016 by June

PlanNHlogo (2)Plymouth State University students Carolyn Greenough and Laura Getts have been awarded 2016 Plan NH scholarships. Plan NH’s Scholarship and Fellowship Program recognizes and honors outstanding New Hampshire students who are interested in aspects of the built environment and its impacts on the social, economic, and/or environmental capital of a community. Both Greenough and Getts are graduate students studying Environmental Science and Policy and work with PSU’s Center for the Environment.

Greenough is researching viewshed alterations due to land development and large scale energy generation and transmission projects in the Lakes and White Mountain Regions of New Hampshire.  These regions have a strong sense of community, have been a favorite recreational destination for many generations, and have an economy largely based around tourism. While energy needs are real, cultural ecosystem services can be diminished by such development projects.  Her work will help understand the variety of values citizens and stakeholders hold regarding viewsheds, which alterations are acceptable, and what balances can be struck.

Greenough noted, “I am extremely grateful for the support given to me by Plan NH.  I feel so fortunate to have been selected as a recipient for this honor.” Greenough’s work is also part of the Ecosystem and Society project of the NH EPSCoR Program through their National Science Foundation’s Research Infrastructure Improvement Award # EPS 1101245.

Dr. Shannon Rogers, who serves as Greenough’s advisor, said “We, at Plymouth State and the Center for the Environment, are committed to community engaged scholarship that addresses local needs and values, such as this viewshed project. We are very grateful for Plan NH’s growing support of environmental policy work that impacts New Hampshire’s communities and built environments.”

Getts has been working collaboratively with off-campus partners, including the Central New Hampshire Bicycling Coalition, Bike-Walk Alliance of New Hampshire, Foundation for Healthy Communities, NH Department of Transportation (NHDOT), and several regional planning commissions, to assess active transportation statewide with a focus on bikability. Laura’s research approach, funded in part by Foundation for Healthy Communities, NH Charitable Foundation, and Bike-Walk Alliance of NH, blends a combination of spatial analysis, modeling, and, soon to be included, public surveys and participatory mapping in GIS to assess patterns of current biking activity and identify potential barriers to access and participation in active transportation options. With this support from PlanNH and new funding from NHDOT, Getts and her research partners aim to inform NHDOT, regional planning commissions, and towns across New Hampshire about the current status of biking as well as identify network gaps and barriers to use which will hopefully lead to a more sustainable transportation network in the state.

In support of Getts’s application, Dr. Amy Villamagna noted “I am consistently impressed with Gett’s caliber of work, her incredible work ethic, maturity, attention to detail, enthusiasm, and aptitude. She has quickly proven herself to be a strong leader in statewide bikability and sustainable communities research.” When notified of the scholarship award, Villamagna added, “I am delighted that Plan NH has recognized the incredible commitment to sustainable planning shared by both of our students.  They truly represent the future of New Hampshire sustainability.”

June 22: “Changing Climate, Changing Forests” Talk by Dr. Lindsey Rustad

May 24th, 2016 by June

001The Center for the Environment and Plymouth State’s Museum of the White Mountains are co-hosting a talk on June 22, 2016 at 4:30 – 5:30 pm by Dr. Lindsey Rustad on “Changing Climate, Changing Forests: Linking global and local perspectives on how a changing climate sculpts forests of New Hampshire.” Rustad is a research ecologist with the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Research Station and Team Leader for the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest. Her talk is part of “Taking the Lead: Women and the White Mountains,” an exhibit at the Museum of the White Mountains.

Rustad will discuss her latest research on climate change and the Northern Forest. She is interested in human-made disturbances on forested ecosystems in New England, especially as it applies to climate change.  Her work integrates a wide range of data into a unified multidisciplinary approach to understanding ecosystem response to global change. Most recently, Rustad has led a forest-based experiment simulating ice storms to help understand the impacts of these events on the forest.

Please visit the Museum of the White Mountains (34 Highland Street, Plymouth) before the talk.  It opens at 10 am on June 22 and will remain open until 7 pm on the day of Dr. Rustad’s presentation. The talk will be held in Heritage Commons, Samuel Read Hall Building (28 Highland Street, enter on campus side of building) on June 22 at 4:30 pm. Both the talk and the Museum are free and open to the public. For more information, please contact June Hammond Rowan or Rebecca Enman.

Upcoming Research Presentations

May 9th, 2016 by June

Over the next few weeks, students will be giving presentations about their research projects. Please join us for the following talks and learn more about our students’ work:

May 10, 12:30 pm, Frost Commons: Sophia Scott, Knowledge into action: Water quality, risk, local ecological knowledge, and decision making in Maine and New Hampshire’s surfing population

May 24, 10:30 am, Lamson Learning Commons Room 124: Carolyn Ellis, Variability in Streamwater Aluminum in the White Mountain National Forest

May 31, 9 am, Lamson Learning Commons Room 124: Lisa Scott, Predictive Sediment in Modelling in the Roanoke River Basin in Virginia

June 1, 9:00 am, Boyd Science Center Room 144: Brittani Dorian, High flow transport of metals downstream of Ore Hill Mine, Warren, NH

Register Now for the NH Water & Watershed Conference

February 29th, 2016 by June

WaterShed Conference sticker 2016Plymouth State’s Center for the Environment Hosts 2016 New Hampshire Water and Watershed Conference March 18

Plymouth, N.H. – In the past 100 years, the northeastern United States has experienced a 50 percent increase in annual precipitation. The frequency of extreme precipitation events in the region is projected to more than double by the end of this century. This trend in extreme weather events is becoming a serious concern in the Granite State, which is the core theme for the 2016 New Hampshire Water and Watershed Conference, “Managing New Hampshire’s Water for a More Resilient Environment.” The event, scheduled for March 18 at Plymouth State University, will survey the resiliency of our natural watersheds, water systems and built infrastructure to respond to and recover from disturbances.

Plymouth State University’s Center for the Environment (CFE) hosts the event each year, with the goal of providing current information about New Hampshire’s water resources and related topics. The agenda includes a morning plenary talk on the resilience of New Hampshire’s hydrology to forest harvesting. Throughout the day, there will be informative sessions on a variety of topics and the event ends with an afternoon panel discussion about water and tourism in New Hampshire.

Conference organizer and CFE’s Associate Director June Hammond Rowan ’10CAGS, ’11EdD said the conference provides the latest information about a critically important natural resource.

“Water resources are a vital part of New Hampshire’s landscape and economy,” Hammond Rowan said. “We have over 30 talks and more than ten posters presentations this year covering a broad range of topics related to resiliency, including floods and flood hazards, modeling our watersheds, water infrastructure, storm water management, valuing water and watershed planning.”

CFE Director Joe Boyer said much of the conference is about how to prepare for problems caused by changes in the weather.

“This conference will explore what we can do to help nature resist and respond to disturbances in the watershed,” Boyer noted. “I’m especially looking forward to the discussion on water and tourism as a way to publicize the watersheds role in our economy.”

Registration for the conference is almost full. For additional conference and registration information, visit plymouth.edu/center-for-the-environment/2016-nh-water-watershed-conference.

The NH Water and Watershed Conference is organized by PSU’s Center for the Environment with assistance from NH Department of Environmental Services, NH Geological Survey, NH Fish and Game Department, UNH NH Water Resources Research Center, US Geological Survey, New England Water Science Center, Tighe and Bond and the City of Portsmouth.

For more information about this release, contact Bruce Lyndes, PSU Media Relations Mgr., (603) 535-2775 or blyndes@plymouth.edu.

 

Spring 2016 Environmental Science Colloquium

January 20th, 2016 by June

Colloquium Spring 2016Please join us for the Spring 2016 Environmental Science Colloquium. The Colloquium series is for students, faculty, and the public and we invite all to come hear the latest on environmental research and topics of interest to our region. Talks are at 4 pm in Boyd Science Center, Room 001. We look forward to seeing you!

January 27 – Environmental Security in West Africa: Engagement on Sustainable Forestry and Landscape, Clare Mendelsohn, Deputy Supervisor, White Mountain National Forest

February 17 – Extreme precipitation in the Northeast: atmospheric processes and forecasting challenges
Benjamin Moore, SUNY Albany

February 24 – Atmospheric rivers and the great New England flood of March 1936, Jason Cordeira, Department of Atmospheric Science and Chemistry, and Center for the Environment

March 9 – Mary Ann McGarry, Department of Environmental Science and Policy, and Center for the Environment

March 23 – Tracking Seasons & Climate Change in the Northern Appalachians, Georgia Murray, Appalachian Mountain Club

March 30 – Regionally occurring chemicals of regulatory concern at the BMI Industrial Complex, Henderson, NV, Paul Hackenberry, Hackenberry Associates, LLC

April 20 -Have your read any good books lately? A review of some recent books in environmental history
Larry Spencer, Department of Biology, and Center for the Environment

Environmental Science & Policy Teaching Assistant Positions

January 20th, 2016 by June

Land Conservation Techniques course at Randolph Community ForestPlymouth State University (PSU), Plymouth, NH, is inviting applications for its MS program in Environmental Science and Policy (ES&P). We offer expertise in areas such as watershed ecosystems, hydrology, climate change, ecological economics, landscape ecology, and land use planning. Our curriculum emphasizes the relationships between science and policy, decision making for social and ecological sustainability and resilience, and science communication. Students in the program often collaborate with interdisciplinary teams of faculty, students, and scientists from other academic, governmental, and non-governmental organizations including organizations such as Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, White Mountain National Forest, NH Department of Environmental Services, Appalachian Mountain Club, and the Squam Lakes Association. Students also work with the Center for the Environment.

Students accepted to PSU’s MS in ESP may be eligible for graduate assistantships (GA). For academic year 2015-16, we anticipate several teaching assistantship (TA) positions. TAs will assist with undergraduate courses in the Department of Environmental Science and Policy. TAs work with faculty on preparing and teaching labs, organizing and preparing field equipment, helping students in the field with monitoring equipment, driving vans, teaching a unit/module, grading assignments and lab field books, assisting with discussions, and leading study groups. A valid US driver’s license is required.

Assistantships are available only to full-time students enrolled in the MS program in Environmental Science and Policy and typically provide a stipend of $4,700 and 12 credits of tuition per year. Applications to the MS in ES&P are submitted to PSU’s  Graduate Studies. For more information about the MS in ES&P, please contact MS ES&P Program Coordinator June Hammond Rowan (jhammondrowan@plymouth.edu). Also, please visit https://www.plymouth.edu/department/esp/ms-in-environmental-science-and-policy/ .

Squam Lakes Watershed Plan

January 15th, 2016 by June

SAM_2724The Center for the Environment is partnering with the Squam Lakes Association on developing a new Squam Lakes Watershed Plan.

In 1991, the New Hampshire Office of State Planning completed a Squam Lakes Watershed Plan. At that time, this effort was to serve as a model management plan for New Hampshire’s lake watersheds. Now, 25 years later, we are ready to  begin updating this plan. We invite you to join us on January 20, 2016 from 5:30 – 8:00 pm at the SLA Resource Center  in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the 1991 Squam Lakes Watershed Plan and to assist us in taking the next steps in updating this important management tool.

Much has changed in the past quarter-century, necessitating a Watershed Plan update. Not only has our landscape changed, but our understanding of lakes and watersheds has evolved. The planning process and requirements for watershed plans are also different with a stringent set of requirements. Our meeting on January 20, 2016 will serve as a jumping off point for the planning process, set to be completed by early summer 2017. We will focus on the requirements of an updated plan, the steps and resources that are necessary for creating the plan, and accomplishments to date.

The Squam Lakes Association is leading the Squam Watershed planning effort in partnership with the Center for the Environment at Plymouth State University. We welcome everyone to the January 20th meeting: local public officials, conservation organization partners, state agencies, watershed landowners, town residents, and the general public. RSVPs are requested. Please contact the SLA.

 

Plymouth State Partners with White Mountains Environmental Groups in Climate Change Research

January 12th, 2016 by June

January 11th, 2016 by blyndes

Hydrologist Dan Evans installing instruments at the top of the Eddy flux tower. Mark Green photo.

Hydrologist Dan Evans installing instruments at the top of the Eddy Flux tower. Mark Green photo.

PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Standing high above the hardwood tree canopy of the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, a steel tower glistens in the sun. Scientific instruments mounted to the top of the 110-foot structure work non-stop, gathering data on moisture, carbon dioxide content and temperature. According to PSU Professor of Hydrology Mark Green, the Eddy Flux research tower is measuring how the forest reacts to changes in the atmosphere.

“We’re watching the forest breathing,” Green stated. “The instruments measure the carbon dioxide coming down during the day when the trees are photosynthesizing and then at night when they’re releasing carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere. It also measures how much water is being released into the atmosphere during the day. The resulting change in air temperature helps measure how the forest is responding to climate warming.”

Green continued by saying the data from Hubbard Brook tells a scientific story, and those results must be correctly communicated to adopt fact-based environmental policy changes.

“We’re documenting how the forest is responding to carbon dioxide and temperature fluctuations, but if we’re not communicating it clearly as scientists, decision makers can’t develop policies to respond to what we’re seeing.”

The $50,000 cost of the tower was paid for, in part, by the U.S. Forest Service Northern Research Station, which has a critical interest in the health of thousands of acres of forestland in New England.

View of the core Eddy Flux instrumentation at the top of the tower with the Hubbard Brook experimental watersheds in the background. Mark Green photo.

View of the core Eddy Flux instrumentation at the top of the tower with the Hubbard Brook experimental watersheds in the background. Mark Green photo.

“The forest has already shown us a lot,” said Green. “The precipitation we’ve seen this decade is a solid 15 percent higher than over the past 100 years. Whether that’s going to persist, we don’t know, but the forest definitely responds to events like that, through higher stream levels and increased potential for flooding.”

The tower also provides an extraordinary learning resource for Plymouth State students, according to Atmospheric Science and Chemistry Professor Eric Kelsey.

“Students learn about relationships between the energy, carbon and water budgets in Hubbard Brook and how they relate to forest ecosystem dynamics,” said Kelsey. “The proximity of the flux tower to PSU allows easy access for students to visit the site, learn about how the measurements are taken and then apply the concepts learned in class.”

For more information about this release, contact Bruce Lyndes, PSU Media Relations Mgr., (603) 535-2775 or blyndes@plymouth.edu.

Apply soon for Graduate Assistantships for 2016-2017

January 4th, 2016 by June

Geoff camera 127Plymouth State University (PSU), Plymouth, NH, is inviting applications for its MS program in Environmental Science and Policy (ES&P). We offer expertise in areas of watershed ecosystems, hydrology, climate change, ecological economics, landscape ecology, and land use planning. Our curriculum emphasizes the relationships between science and policy, decision making for social and ecological sustainability and resilience, and science communication. Students in the program often collaborate with interdisciplinary teams of faculty, students, and scientists from other academic, governmental, and non-governmental organizations including organizations such as Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, White Mountain National Forest, NH Department of Environmental Services, Appalachian Mountain Club, and the Squam Lakes Association.

Students accepted to PSU’s MS in ESP may be eligible for graduate assistantships (GA) with PSU’s Center for the Environment. For academic year 2016-17, we anticipate GAs in the following areas:

  • Limnology and paleolimnology research projects on several lakes in Northern New Hampshire and Maine.
  • Phenology research on alpine and woodland flowering plants in New Hampshire’s White Mountains.
  • Analysis of long-term environmental data sets.
  • Water chemistry dynamics and laboratory analysis.

Assistantships are available only to full-time students enrolled in the MS program in Environmental Science and Policy and typically provide a stipend of $8,000 and 15 credits of tuition per year. Applications to the MS in ES&P are submitted to PSU’s Graduate Studies. For more information, please contact Associate Director of the Center for the Environment and MS ES&P Program Coordinator June Hammond Rowan (jhammondrowan@plymouth.edu).

Contact Us

Contact Us

January 9th, 2013 by Michael

Center for the Environment

Plymouth State University
Samuel Read Hall Building, 2nd Floor
MSC #63, 17 High Street
Plymouth, NH 03264
psu-cfe@plymouth.edu

phone (603) 535-3179
fax (603) 535-3004