Category: 2012

World’s First Web-based Env. Science Textbook

November 8th, 2012 in 2012, 2012, Cutler Cleveland, Faculty, Publications, Robert Kaufmann

By Robert K. Kaufmann and Cutler J. Cleveland

We are pleased to announce the publication of the world’s first entirely web-based, authoritative, introductory textbook on environmental science:

Environmental Science by Robert K. Kaufmann and Cutler J. Cleveland of Boston University.

Environmental Science takes advantage of the latest technologies to transcend the traditional textbook to create engaging, interactive content utilizing video, social networking, image galleries, and other features that only the Web can provide.


  • 100% Web-based and accessible on any device
  • Price = $50.00
  • Thorough coverage of the key topics in environmental science; integration of ecology, economics, and policy using energy and material flows and a systems perspective
  • Case Studies and Policy in Action that develop critical thinking included in each chapter
  • 63 videos and animations, and a Glossary embedded in text to bring content alive
  • Electronic highlighting tool
  • 500 multiple choice question test bank upon adoption
  • Social networking tools to engage students and instructor in online discussion
  • Ability for instructors to quickly and easily customize by deleting/re-ordering chapters, and by adding content of their own (text, links, labs, lecture notes, video, assignments, images, PDFs, Powerpoints, etc.)

To see a sample chapter and request access to an examination copy, please visit

Robert K. Kaufmann
Professor, Department of Earth and Environment
Director, Center for Energy and Environmental Studies
Boston University

Cutler J. Cleveland
Professor, Department of Earth and Environment, Boston University
Founding Editor-in-Chief, Encyclopedia of Earth

Prof. Fagherazzi studies coastal eutrophication as a driver of salt marsh loss

October 25th, 2012 in 2012, 2012, Faculty, Publications, Sergio Fagherazzi

nature11533-f2.2Salt marshes are highly productive coastal wetlands that provide important ecosystem services such as storm protection for coastal cities, nutrient removal and carbon sequestration. Despite protective measures, however, worldwide losses of these ecosystems have accelerated in recent decades1. Here we present data from a nine-year whole-ecosystem nutrient-enrichment experiment. Our study demonstrates that nutrient enrichment, a global problem for coastal ecosystems234, can be a driver of salt marsh loss. We show that nutrient levels commonly associated with coastal eutrophication increased above-ground leaf biomass, decreased the dense, below-ground biomass of bank-stabilizing roots, and increased microbial decomposition of organic matter. Alterations in these key ecosystem properties reduced geomorphic stability, resulting in creek-bank collapse with significant areas of creek-bank marsh converted to unvegetated mud. This pattern of marsh loss parallels observations for anthropogenically nutrient-enriched marshes worldwide, with creek-edge and bay-edge marsh evolving into mudflats and wider creeks567. Our work suggests that current nutrient loading rates to many coastal ecosystems have overwhelmed the capacity of marshes to remove nitrogen without deleterious effects. Projected increases in nitrogen flux to the coast, related to increased fertilizer use required to feed an expanding human population, may rapidly result in a coastal landscape with less marsh, which would reduce the capacity of coastal regions to provide important ecological and economic services.  Click to read the entire paper…