The Great Marsh Resiliency Partnership received the Environmental Protection Agency’s Environmental Merit Award in a ceremony on May 3rd at Faneuil Hall in Boston for their outstanding contribution to environmental restoration and protection. The team includes Earth & Environment Research Assistant Professor Alyssa Novak.
The “Partnership,” led by the National Wildlife Federation, received a $2.9M Hurricane Sandy Resiliency Grant in 2015 to reduce the vulnerability of communities within the Great Marsh to coastal storms, sea-level rise and other stressors. The project, entitled “Community Risk Reduction through Comprehensive Coastal Resiliency Enhancement for the Upper North Shore, Massachusetts,” takes a holistic approach that includes near-term restoration activities and long-term modeling and planning. Over the past two years the partnerships accomplishments have included: eradicating the invasive pepperweed and common reed from over 400 acres of saltmarsh; establishing 3,000 feet of dunes in front of vulnerable coastal infrastructure; reintroducing eelgrass to the subtidal waters; implementing a monitoring and management program for the invasive green crab; identifying and integrating 100 strategies into a comprehensive Great Marsh Coastal Adaptation Plan; identifying more than 1,200 barriers, including dams, water crossings and culverts for retro fits and upgrades. This project navigated the complex interconnections between natural resource conservation and economic and political priorities, jurisdictional authority, and diverse management values.
Congratulations to Earth & Environment PhD student Yaxiong Ma, recipient of BU’s 2017 Initiative on Cities Urban Research Award! Ma is building a VR simulation of urban green and gray infrastructure.
“To protect personnel on Southeastern military installations from tickborne diseases, a federal program has awarded a five-year, $2.45 million grant to a team of researchers with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and other institutions.” That includes BU and Associate Professor Michael Dietze.
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Associate Professor Michael Dietze and his colleagues at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have been awarded a five-year, $2.45 million grant by the federal Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program, an initiative supported by the U.S. Department of Defense. The goal is to protect personnel on Southeastern military installations from tickborne diseases. The research team will determine the effects of invasive plants, fire, and host animal density on tick populations, and assess how these factors could influence such disease risk under future climate conditions.
Research Associate Professor Rachel Abercrombie has received 3 new research awards in the last few months to continue her work in earthquake seismology. She is collaborating with scientists and graduate students at a number of different universities and institutions. The awards, their focus, and Prof. Abercrombie’s work on them are described below:
NSF Collaborative Award
The U.S.-led international experiment project titled Hikurangi Ocean Bottom Investigation of Tremor and Slow Slip or HOBITSS deployed an ocean bottom instrument array offshore New Zealand. The aim is to investigate the physical environment that hosts shallow slow slip and its relationship to destructive, seismic slip on the Hikurangi subduction thrust. Prof. Abercrombie is a PI with Prof. Schwartz (UCSC) and Prof. Sheehan (U Colorado) on a two-year project that will build on the initial data analysis from this experiment. Prof. Abercrombie is leading the analysis of earthquake source parameters to explore their spatial and temporal relationships with slow slip, geodetic coupling and physical properties of the plate interface.
The original deployment and early results featured in a recent EOS article titled “Investigations of Shallow Slow Slip Offshore of New Zealand.”
NSF Collaborative Award
Prof. Abercrombie and Prof. Chen (University of Oklahoma) received three years of funding to investigate earthquake stress drops, their uncertainties, and spatial and temporal changes using data from around Parkfield, California. This section of the San Andreas Fault near Parkfield, has a high rate of earthquakes, and is one of the best-instrumented sections of fault in the world.
Southern California Earthquake Center Award
For this one year award, Prof. Abercrombie is working with Prof. Shearer at UCSD to improve measurements of earthquake stress drop in Southern California.
Prof. Abercrombie also regularly visits scientists at MIT and Harvard with whom she works on a range of different projects. To learn more about her work, check out her profile page.
E&E Professor Bruce Anderson and BU Center for Remote Sensing Research Associate Professor Magaly Koch, along with School of Education Professors Peter Garik, Donald Derosa and Evangeline Stefanakis, were recently awarded $3 million as part of a $10 million multi-institutional NASA project called “MISSION EARTH: Fusing GLOBE with NASA Assets to Build Systemic Innovation In STEM Education.”
The project seeks to leverage the resources of both NASA and Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) in order to develop a K-12 progression of activities to get students out taking observations that they can compare with NASA satellite imagery and use to do real, hands-on science about their local environment within a global perspective. The unique contribution of the project will be to develop these activities such that they build upon each other as the students complete each grade so that the students are eventually able to use GLOBE and NASA resources to propose and answer their own original research questions.
Earth & Environment Research Assistant Professor Josh Gray and Professor Mark Friedl have been awarded funding from NASA. The three year long grant will create phenological indicators of climate impacts on ecosystems. Gray is the PI on the grant and Friedl is the Co-I.
To learn more about Gray and Friedl’s work, check out their profile pages by clicking on their names above.
Earth & Environment Associate Professor Mike Dietze was just awarded grant funding from the Department of Defense for a new project that will focus on the risks of Tick-borne diseases that could potentially result from the effects of climate change.
In the grant’s abstract, Dietze and his colleague describe the objectives of the project:
“1) Evaluate the interactions between fire and plant invasions spanning a gradient in fire management, invasive plant distribution and abundance, and climatic conditions across the southeastern U.S.
2) Quantify the effects of fire and plant invasions, and their interactions, for variation in wildlife abundance, tick abundance, tick infection rates, and TBD risk to humans.
3) Calibrate a spatially explicit model of TBD risk in response to fire-invasion interactions and incorporate simulations of climate change scenarios to examine the responses of fire, plant invasions, wildlife, TBD risk, and their interactions.”
Assistant Professor Rachael Garrett was recently awarded supplemental funding for her grant project titled “Improving agricultural practices for sustainable development.”
The project is funded by the Interactions of Food Systems with Water and Energy Systems program which is a part of the National Science Foundation’s Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability Fellows program.
To learn more about Assistant Professor Garrett’s work, check out her profile page.
To learn more about Prof. Dietze’s work, check out his profile page.