Category: 2018

Eric Bullock leads forest monitoring workshops in Central and South America

August 13th, 2018 in 2018, Aug-18, Curtis Woodcock, Faculty, Graduate students, News, Presentations

Eric Bullock, a PhD candidate studying with Curtis Woodcock, this summer helped lead workshops in San José, Costa Rica; Lima, Peru; and Bogotá, Colombia. The workshops involved capacity building for forest monitoring on the Google Earth Engine. Bullock’s ongoing dissertation involves developing and implementing a methodology to map forest degradation.

E&E minor Katie Camero writes on diamonds for the Globe

August 6th, 2018 in 2018, Aug-18, Christine Regalla, Faculty, Pub-18, Publications, Undergraduate

Katie Camero, a Journalism major and Earth & Environmental Science minor, recently penned “More than a quadrillion tons of diamonds are under your feet, new study proposes” in the Boston Globe. Camero writes of MIT’s new study finding that the diamonds, 100 miles below ground and detected by seismic activity, are more common that conventionally thought. Camero noted her recent coursework with Christine Regalla in ES 107 Introduction to Climate & Earth System Science bolstered her reporting.

Assistant Professor Christine Regalla reports on earthquake and tsunami hazards in Japan

July 31st, 2018 in 2018, Christine Regalla, Faculty, Jul-2018, News, Pub-18, Publications

Assistant Professor Christine Regalla has penned “At-Sea Workshop Advances Subduction Zone Research” in EOS. The report highlights the research and training opportunities afforded by Dr. Regalla’s IODP (International Ocean Discovery Program) workshop at sea. She spent January of 2017 aboard the Chikyu ocean drilling vessel, where she and her team used ocean sediment cores and geophysical data to address research questions concerning earthquake and tsunami hazards in Japan.

Congratulations to newly minted Dr. Hollie Emery

July 27th, 2018 in 2018, Alumni, Faculty, Graduate students, Jul-2018, Robinson "Wally" Fulweiler

Hollie Emery has successfully defended her doctoral thesis, “The Effects of Tidal Restriction, Phragmites Australis Invasion, and Precipitation Change on Salt Marsh Greenhouse Gas Emissions.” The research examines how salt marshes, which are important carbon-sequestering ecosystems, might be affected by a variety of human impacts (climate change, invasive species, and coastal hydrology changes). Dr. Emery did this in Wally Fulweiler‘s lab by measuring the green house gas emissions and microbial communities in marshes facing these impacts. The research shows that salt marshes are resilient and are able to withstand human impacts, and therefore likely to continue benefiting coastal communities in the future.

Continuing her work as a postdoctoral associate at Harvard, Dr. Emery will study microbial communities around hydrothermal vents.

Congratulations to Associate Professor Anne Short

July 24th, 2018 in 2018, Anne Short, Faculty, Jul-2018, News

The Department of Earth & Environment is thrilled to announce that Anne Short Gianotti was recently promoted to the rank of Associate Professor.

Lecturer Rick Reibstein hosts webinar on ties between BU and local energy policy

July 20th, 2018 in 2018, Aug-18, Events, Jul-2018, News, Presentations, Rick Reibstein

Leveraging Universities for Advancing State & Local Energy Policy

August 6, Noon ET

Presented by Richard Reibstein

Earth & Environment Lecturer Rick Reibstein has recently created GE 532 Research for Environmental Agencies & Organizations, in which students perform discrete research tasks for government and nonprofit groups on environmental and public health matters. The course has proven to be a great way to supplement scarce agency and NGO resources and produce work useful to the clients, the students, and the public. He will discuss student projects that involved energy, including:

  • Examining the potential for community solar to clean up waste sites;
  • The implementation of community choice aggregation;
  • The optimal placement of EV charging stations.

For those who might wish to consider replicating this approach, the conversation will cover how the course is conducted:

  • How research tasks are identified and selected;
  • The role of the course instructor in ensuring quality of product;
  • The team relationship and independent student work;
  • Contacts with relevant staff and experts.

Reception of student work has been enthusiastically positive in nearly all cases. Agencies and organizations use the class for research they don’t have the time to perform. Students learn about real world issues, make contacts and gain insight into how government works and experience that helps them get jobs. The work is made publicly available for anyone to use, at Some projects continue from semester to semester and some students have stayed with the class for successive terms working on the same or related projects. For example, one student evaluated tree retention policies for the state (these were for municipalities to implement), and in the next semester participated in a team that looked at getting carbon credits for forest conservation – both efforts should be considered as opportunities for carbon sequestration and part of a climate change mitigation strategy.

Register for the webinar here.

New blog accompanies lecturer Rick Reibstein’s environmental responsibility textbook

July 12th, 2018 in 2018, Faculty, Jul-2018, News, Pub-18, Publications, Rick Reibstein, Undergraduate

Trunity, the publisher of E&E Lecturer Rick Reibstein‘s Developing Sustainable Environmental Responsibility​, now hosts a blog “for people who want to help meet the challenge of how to live within the biosphere without harming it, and thus protect ourselves, other living things, future generations, and the source of all wealth and value that we hold dear.” The Environmental Citizen offers stories about collective social responsibility, federal policy for land management, and legislative proposals surround clean energy. The last topic was explored by E&E students in Reibstein’s course GE 532 Research for Environmental Agencies & Organizations (now enrolling for Fall 2018).

Assistant professor Jeffrey Geddes speaks about his $1 million in research awards for air quality

July 5th, 2018 in 2018, Awards, Faculty, Interviews, Jeffrey Geddes, Jul-2018, News

Assistant Professor Jeffrey Geddes, who joined E&E in 2016, has spoken to BU Today about the $1 million in early career research awards he has won from the National Science Foundation and NASA.

As BU Today notes: “The funding will allow him to expand his use of satellite-based remote sensing observations, computer modeling, and targeted field observations to study the impact on air quality in North America of the interaction between natural emissions from the biosphere and those caused by human activities such as burning fossil fuels.”

“While emissions from forests and other natural ecosystems alone don’t normally cause air pollution, Geddes says, they can interact with emissions caused by human activities to create ‘a complex air pollution mixture that can determine how effective controlling emissions from human activities will be in improving air quality in any given year.'”

Associate professor Wally Fulweiler speaks on EPA and Narragansett Bay

June 18th, 2018 in 2018, Faculty, Interviews, Jun-18, Robinson "Wally" Fulweiler

Associate Professor Wally Fulweiler has spoken to numerous media outlets about the ecology of Narragansett Bay and recent attempts by the Environmental Protection Agency to censor scientists’ presentations.

Pontus Olofsson, Eric Bullock, and Curtis Woodcock lead session on map accuracy and area estimation at Google Earth Engine User Summit in Dublin

June 14th, 2018 in 2018, Curtis Woodcock, Faculty, Graduate students, Jun-18, News, Pontus Olofsson, Presentations, Researchers

A team of E&E remote sensors recently presented at the Google Earth Engine User Summit in Dublin. Research Associate Professor Pontus Olofsson, Professor Curtis Woodcock, and PhD candidate Eric Bullock are seeking to rectify classification errors in remote sensing-based maps that may introduce severe bias in mapped areas of land cover and land cover change. The summit is designed for mapping and technology specialists, researchers, and instructors who are actively working on projects or teaching courses related to remote sensing or mapping.