News

See recent news and stories about important work happening in phosphorous sustainability and with the people involved in STEPS.

Smitom Borah talks with the Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center on the Phosphorus World podcast!

STEPS grad student Smitom Borah was recently featured on a podcast on Internal phosphorus loading with Dr. Kenneth Wagner for the Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center. It is titled, "Lake eutrophication and the accomplice we have ignored so far". The podcast will be uploaded on the SECASC website later this summer.

Listen Here

Review of Fate, Exposure, and Effects of Sunscreens in Aquatic Environments and Implications for Sunscreen Usage and Human Health.

STEPS Co-Deputy Director Paul Westerhoff and The National Academies invites you to register for this public release webinar on August 9, 2022 of a new report: "Review of Fate, Exposure, and Effects of Sunscreens in Aquatic Environments and Implications for Sunscreen Usage and Human Health". The report calls on the U.S. EPA to conduct an ecological risk assessment of UV filters to characterize possible risks to aquatic ecosystems and the species that live in them. The report contains information useful for such an assessment. It also describes the role of sunscreens in preventing skin cancer and what is known about how human health could be affected by potential changes in usage. The committee chairs will share key takeaways and respond to questions.

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PSB Partners Breakfast Sep. 15th

Join us for the PSB Partners Breakfast September 15, 2022 in the Plant Sciences Building. This in-person event at the Plant Sciences Building is an opportunity to network and make connections with external partners (both industry and non-industry). It will be hosted by The STEPS Center in conjunction with the Plant Sciences Initiative.

Learn About PSI

REU Showcase Live Presentations

REU Scholars and BAE researchers gathered in the Teaching & Visualization Lab to give presentations on our panoramic screen. Guests asked questions and were able to provide real time feedback through our QR code enabled digital link. Our presenters prepared informative works of art that surrounded our guests and provided striking visuals for those watching through our Zoom link.

STEPS REU Opportunities

STEPS REU Showcase

The STEPS REU Showcase took place in the Plant Sciences Building on NCSU's Centennial Campus. Scholars, mentors, PIs, staff, and family viewed the students printed posters in Seminar Room 1322. Guests interacted with scholars on a one-to-one level and were able to ask questions. Our presenters include members of the P4 group.

More About STEPS REU Opportunities

Welcome REU!

Scholars from Arizona State, Clemson, and NCSU gathered together to finally meet in person and prepare for a jam packed three day symposium experience. Day one focuses on connection. Day two features two events. The REU Showcase Poster Presentation and the Teaching & Visualization Lab live 5 minute presentations.

Learn More About STEPS REU Opportunities

REU Showcase 8/4/2022

Are you ready? We are! Join us for the REU Showcase in the Plant Sciences Building on Centennial Campus. The event runs from 10 AM to 1 PM.

Learn More About STEPS REU Opportunities

Borrowed Gene Helps Maize Adapt to High Elevations, Cold Temperatures.

STEPS researchers Fausto Rodríguez-Zapata and Ruben Rellan-Alvarez in conjunction with NSF investigated the HPC1 gene in maize that modulates chemical process that contribute to flowering time. They learned more about variations in lipids called phospholipids and their role in adaptation to cold, low phosphorus, and the regulation of important processes.

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Sustained Stoichiometric Imbalance and Its Ecological Consequences in a Large Oligotrophic Lake

Jim Elser in Sustained Stoichiometric Imbalance and Its Ecological Consequences in a Large Oligotrophic Lake reports on 38 years of nutrient dynamics for Flatbed Lake. The data collected highlights the importance of phosphorus and nitrogen levels in aquatic systems.

Full Article Here

Frontiers: Phosphorus Remediation Using Alginate/Glomalin Biobeads: Examining Structural Cohesivity, Nutrient Retention, and Reapplication Viability

STEPS Jango Bhadha explores solutions to the problem of excess nutrient loading from agriculture and urban runoff resulting in harmful algal blooms. Jango explored the use of biobeads constructed with phytoplankton as a possible medium for a cyclic (CHR) system to address the problem of eutrophication.

Read More Here

REU Field Day: Tidewater Research Station

REU Scholars traveled to Plymouth NC to participate in field operations! They met researcher Luke Gatiboni on Wednesday 6/29/2022 on the first REU Field Day. Luke gave a hands-on education on the importance of phosphorus in agricultural soils. After a lecture and tour of the growing fields; students learned how to gather live plant samples. They also helped to gather soil samples and check the overall health of plants in the state’s longest running soil fertility experiment!

Read More About the Tidewater Research Station

STEPS SLC and Scholars Networking Event

STEPS Undergraduates, Graduates, Postdocs, REU Students, and RET Scholars met together around a common table for pizza on June 23rd. Participants enjoyed the social setting, discussing research models, techniques, and current affairs. Participants: (Chris Wade, Darrell Harry, Nafisa Amin, Lauren Chandarana, Julianne Buggs, Vedika Shah, Jasmine Peace, Leslie Webb, Elizabeth Trubchaninov, Christopher Good, Brooklynn Blackwell, Nadia Chapple Jessica Deaver, Hezhou Ding, Julianna Nieuwsma, Smitom Borah, Ayden Ferrell, Jasmine Covington, Keyon Kemp)

STEPS REU Opportunities

OPF Global: A Sustainable Direction for Phosphorus Will Lead to Better Food Production, Cleaner Waters, Healthier People and Greater Biodiversity.

Jim Elser and Matthew Scholz of STEPS worked with scientists involved in SPS, the P-RCN, and other international efforts to come to a consensus on phosphorus sustainability. The report includes the call to action for governments across the world to reduce global phosphorus pollution by 50% and increase phosphorus recycling by 50% by 2050.

Full Report

REU Scholars Breakout Session: Game Lab Social

REU Scholars enjoyed a well earned social event in the Hunt Library on the North Carolina State University's Centennial Campus. The event was held in the Game Lab. The lab is not only the perfect place for students to destress it features a 19.68’ x 4.43’ Leyard LED touch-interactive display that can be split into multiple sections. The lab is often reserved for beta testing games, class instruction, workshops, and PhD defenses. It is open for gaming at all other times.

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Sherine Obare and the NNI Nano Matters Podcast Discuss Using Nanomaterials to Develop Highly Sensitive Senors

Sherine Obare joined the NNI to discuss using nanomaterials to develop highly sensitive sensors on the Nano Matters podcast.

Listen Here

Use Of Remote Sensing to Identify Liquid Manure Applications in Eastern North Carolina

Details how the use of manure stored in storage lagoons maybe increased by satellite radar. These results will help to fill gaps in data on manure management at CAFOs.

Full Article

Alternatives to Traditional Fertilizers

End-of-pipe approaches to remove pollutants in wastewater before discharge overlooks the values of the key nutrients in wastewater such as phosphorus. This article uses emergy accounting to provide an analysis as to whether phosphorus recovery from waste water is sustainable.

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What Role Does Regulation Play in Responsible Innovation of Nanotechnology in Food and Agriculture? Insights and Framings from U.S. Stakeholders

Food Regulators’ focus on safety and efficacy may not be sufficient to meet more complex ethical, legal, and social implications of new products. This includes the use of nanotechnology and nanomaterials in food and agriculture.

Read the Full Text

Recovering Nutrients from Wastewater

Recovery of nutrients from municipal wastewater has attracted attention due to the nature of phosphorus as a nonrenewal resource coupled with the expense of nitrogen fertilizer. The article explores the technologies for recovery in addition to wastewater characteristics, recovery goals, effluent discharge limits, constraints on chemical usage, treatment plant scale, operational complexity and applicability, and analysis of energy demands.

More Information

An In-depth Report on Global Phosphorus Use, Challenges, Solutions and Opportunities.

This collective report focuses on the need for phosphorous sustainability. The chapters explore opportunities for recovery as well as major sources of waste. The report is available for both direct reading online and download by chapter.

Read the Full Report

MSE REU Kick Off Event

Undergraduate scholars met on the Engineering Oval Lawn near Hunt Library at NC State on June 3, 2022 for a mixer with the Materials Science and Engineering Department of North Carolina State University. Scholars met with STEPS and MSE faculty as well as undergraduates in other summer research programs to form lasting connections and expand their scientific networks. The purpose of engaging undergraduate students through STEPS programs is to give students valuable lab experience. These students will go on to become our future leaders in phosphorus research.

More About REU programs

Join STEPS at the PSI Building Celebration June 2, 2022

Join the staff and students in the Plant Sciences Initiative building in celebrating the official opening! Come meet your neighbors and learn how PSI will impact the world.

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No Model Is Perfect, But Some Are Useful

Controlling cyanobacterial algal blooms seemed key to reducing microcystin in Lake Erie. Current literature challenges this plan by mathematical modeling. The action plan by the US Environmental Protection Agency for limiting reduction to phosphorus may have unintended consequences. The solution may lie in reducing nitrogen as well as phosphorus.

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James J. Elser on Ecological Stoichiometry and Nutrient Limitation.

James J. Elser on Ecological Stoichiometry theory and how carbon and nitrogen rich phytoplankton toxins are regulated by nutrient limitation and cellular Stoichiometry.

Full Text
Matt Scholz headshot

Join Matt Scholz and the Sustainable Phosphorus Alliance for a Series on Managing Your P on the Farm

Webinar Series by the Sustainable Phosphorus Alliance about managing phosphorus on farm land. Hosted by Matt Scholz of STEPS.

Watch Here
Shelf of library books

Models Predict Planned Phosphorus Load Reduction Will Make Lake Erie More Toxic

Results of a large scale meta analysis of 103 papers to develop an understanding of toxigenic and non toxigenic strain ecology of harmful cyanobacteria. This model predicts that planned phosphorus load reduction will lower biomass and make nitrogen and light more available.

Full Text Here

Phosphate Removal and Recovery by Lanthanum-Based Adsorbents: A Review for Current Advances

Explore how controlling eutrophication and recovering phosphate from water bodies are some of the most pending issues of the 21 century.

Discover More Here
Image of river flooding

Rebecca Muenich Answers: How Much Phosphorus Is Safe for Our Streams and Rivers?

Join Rebecca Muenich as she discusses the topic of phosphorus in waterways with the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette on the Know the News podcast.

Listen Here

Kimia Karimi Awarded First Place in the 2022 Geospatial Water Technology Conference Paper Competition

Kimia Karimi was awarded first-place in the 2022 Geospatial Water Technology Conference Paper Competition for her research on phosphorus watershed modeling. Kimia is a PhD candidate in the Center for Geospatial Analytics at NCSU. She is working with Dan Obenour in Theme 3.

Award Details

New World Bank Commodity Markets Outlook

New World Bank Commodity Markets Outlook expects agriculture and fertilizer prices to remain high through 2024

Full Report Here

Dr. Ross Sozzani Promoted to Full Professor

We are so excited to announce that Dr. Ross Sozzani is now a full time professor here at our department! The Sozzani lab aims to gain a coherent qualitative and quantitative understanding of stem cell maintenance at the systems-level. Be sure to follow along with her exciting research and check out her bio! Congratulations Dr Sozzani! We cannot wait to see what you have in store for North Carolina State University !

Read Full Bio

Morocco’s New Challenges

As A Gatekeeper of the World’s Food Supply: The Geopolitics, Economics, and Sustainability of OCP’s Global Fertilizer Exports

Read the full article

Jim Elser Inducted into the National Academy of Sciences

Congratulations to our very own Jim Elser on his induction into the National Academy of Sciences!

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Professor Natalie Nelson presents her research

Emerging Research Showcase

https://ncsu.zoom.us/rec/share/1DXl4_8foaQ1bbGIvC4q85NQtOgz0fqs1feGmaCKUwg9shQu0rVNC6zqUC0PdFk.8lylnpg-EWO0ybeE

View it here

Researcher Rebecca Muenich Honored

Rebecca Muenich was presented with the Early Career Alumni Award by the University of Arkansas. "It was such a privilege to be given this by the first female Dean of Engineering Kim Needy."

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Jim Elser On His Induction Into the National Academy of Sciences

A reflection by Jim Elser on his path to this prestigious honor.

Jim Elser to be Inducted into the National Academy of Sciences

The sixth R: Revitalizing the natural phosphorus pump

Whales and other animal life may be the key to revitalizing phosphorous levels.

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Developing the Next Generation of Civic Scientists: Rice Science Policy Symposium

Friday, April 8, 2022, 10:30 am Eastern/9:30 am Central Registration and agenda at bakerinstitute.org/events/2293 The next generation of civic scientists — scientists and engineers who use their knowledge, accomplishments, and skills to help bridge the gap between science and society — will have to contend with enormous challenges in the coming decades, from climate change to new public health risks. This symposium will explore topics of interest for early career professionals and the general public, including the development of fact-based policies that serve the public good, the role of the national academies in policymaking, and opportunities to communicate science to the public and participate in public policy at all levels of government.

More Information
Dr. Jacob Jones, Director, Analytical Instrumentation Facility, with a graduate student at the Titan Microscope on Centennial Campus.

Director Jacob Jones provides his perspectives on sustainability and diversity from the CRU Phosphates meeting in Tampa, Florida.

A retrospective by Director Jacob Jones on his experience attending the CRU Phosphates 2022 Conference & Exhibition. He details the value of in person connections as well as the informative presentations of his fellow attendees.

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Celebrate Earth Day with STEPS

STEPS is reaching out to students and the public at NC State's Earth Fair today. April is Earth Month, so please take the opportunity to learn about ways to make our life on this planet more sustainable.

Learn About the Fair

Earth’s Great Oxidation Event facilitated by the rise of sedimentary phosphorus recycling

How the rise of atmospheric oxygen 2.4 billion years ago created a transition in the evolution of global biogeochemical cycles as well as life on Earth.

More Information

Phosphorus Chemistry in the Earth's Upper Atmosphere

Interplanetary dust particles entering the Earth's atmosphere may be a significant source of phosphorus.

Full Text

Changes To Agriculture In Iowa

The Trickle-Down Effect of Agriculture in Iowa, Will the state's residents always have to put up with adverse water quality?

Read More Here

STEPS Director, Jacob Jones, Attends the CRU Phosphates Meeting

STEPS Director, Jacob Jones, is attending the CRU Phosphates meeting in Tampa the week of March 6, 2022. Contact him at jacobjones@ncsu.edu to connect and to learn more about the STEPS Center. @jacobljones #CRUphosphates

Find out more

Collaborator Sherine Obare shares her experience!

Sherine Obare discusses her successes at the intersection and convergence of nanotechnology, chemistry, environmental science, and agriculture.

Podcast here

Our STEPS launch webinar is now live on YouTube!

This webinar describes the research portfolio of the newly launched STEPS Center for phosphorus sustainability. Lead researchers from the STEPS team describe the variety of research topics that will be pursued in the first year of the Center.

Take a look!

The Global Nitrogen-Phosphorus Imbalance

STEPS investigator and SPA Director Jim Elser continues to lead our understanding of the nitrogen-phosphorus imbalance.

Read the full article here

Join Us!

STEPS: A Convergence Research Center Speaker Seminar

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"The next 10,000 years of agriculture: How ecosystem services can help us rethink human-nature relationships."

Visiting Professor Elena Bennett presents her findings on the next 10,000 of agriculture. Elena Bennett is the Professor and CRC (Tier 1) Chair in Sustainability Science at McGill University. Her work focuses on the interactions among ecosystem services and how we can manage these interactions for multifunctional working landscapes.

More about Professor Elena Bennett

Hazardous Spills at Retired Fertilizer Manufacturing Plants Will Continue to Occur ...

Detailed summation of how hazardous spills impact phosphorous loss. Spills will continue to occur without regulatory guidance. Scientific innovations along with regulatory enforcement of existing and future guidelines with mitigate the current situation.

Full Publication

STEPS Kick-off Meeting Held Nov. 15-16 at ASU.

The STEPS Kick-off meeting was held Nov. 15-16 at ASU. Participants from North Carolina State University's STEPS Program met with counterparts at the Arizona State University campus.

Event Details

Changes in the Phosphorus Fertilizer Recommendations for Corn, Soybean, and Small Grains in North Carolina

Changes in the phosphorus recommendations for products such as corn, soybeans, and small grains may greatly impact the need for phosphorus retention and reclamation.

For More Information

ASU Experts Address Efficiency, Sustainability of Agricultural Fertilizer with STEPS

The Science and Technologies for Phosphorus Sustainability (STEPS) Center brings interdisciplinary experts to pursue its “25-in-25” vision as ASU experts address efficiency and sustainability of agricultural fertilizer. 

See The Announcement
Jacob Jones in his research laboratory

STEPS Joins a Prestigious Class of NSF Science and Technology Centers

The newly awarded Center will use a convergence research approach to accelerate fundamental scientific discoveries and the development of novel and sustainable technologies and practices to control, recover, reuse and manage phosphorus.

See The Announcement
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STEPS Launches New Twitter Account

STEPS is venturing into the world of social media with a new Twitter account. We invite you to engage with us!

Follow STEPS
Bullhorn icon

New Job Opportunities in STEPS

STEPS is seeking highly qualified staff applicants for positions in the Center's headquarters at NC State: Diversity Coordinator, Business Officer, and Administrative Assistant

Join the STEPS Team
Image of river flooding

Accepting Abstracts for Phosphorus Chemistry Session at ACS Spring Meeting

STEPS team members have organized a session at the ACS Spring Meeting: Advancing Phosphorus Chemistry for Sensing, Removing, and Recovering Phosphorus. Abstracts for this session are due on October 11.

Submit An Abstract
Tidewater Research Station

Phosphorus-Focused Session at American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting

STEPS researchers have organized a session at the AGU Fall meeting entitled “Convergent research to manage human interactions with the phosphorus cycle” this December. Invited speakers include STEPS team member Luke Gatiboni and collaborator Elise Morrison.

Register For The Meeting
Image of sewage treatment plant

FlashPhos, Recovery of Phosphorus From Sludge

"FlashPhos" is a new 15M Euro project to optimize an industrial test facility (TRL of 6-7) to recover the phosphorus from sewage sludge.

More On FlashPhos
Becca Muenich headshot

Rebecca Muenich Receives Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award!

Rebecca Muenich, Assistant Professor in Arizona State's School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, received a 2021 ASU Faculty Women’s Association Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award.

More About Becca's Mentoring
Image of Natalie Nelson

Nelson Receives NSF CAREER Award

Natalie Nelson, Assistant Professor in Biological and Agricultural Engineering at NC State, was recently awarded an NSF CAREER grant. Her research will focus on using sensor data to monitor water dynamics and better predict water quality after tidal flooding.

More About Natalie's Award
Aerial view of a landscape

Nutrient Optimization and Reducing Runoff

Jim Elser recently joined Dan Poston on Larta Institute's Deeper Dive podcast to discuss how innovation can play a key role in improved nutrient optimization and how nutrient efficiency and management can reduce nutrient runoff.

Listen to the Podcast
Model of Phosphorus Uptake by Plants

Legacy Phosphorus Uptake by Plants Relies on Fertilization History

Luke Gatiboni and his team recently published work exploring how different phosphorus (P) fractions in soils contribute to plant uptake. They found that all soil P fractions can potentially provide plants with P depending on P fertilization history.

How Do Plants Access Legacy Phosphorus?
Phosphorus-binding protein selective adsorption of Phosphorus

Immobilized Phosphate-Binding Protein (PBP) Highly Selective for Phosphorus

Recent work from Brooke Mayer's group at Marquette demonstrated that phosphate-binding protein could selectively adsorb phosphorus even in solutions containing high concentrations of arsenate, which has a similar molecular structure.

More about PBPs
Photo of Professor Ross Sozzani in front of greenhouse

Ross Sozzani Named Director of Plant Improvement Platform for Plant Sciences Initiative

Ross Sozzani, associate professor in NC State’s Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, is known for her work in plant development and stem cell regulation, and her research interest is at the interface of computational and biological sciences.

Get to Know Ross
Shelf of library books

Shared Phosphorus Sustainability Library

The STEPS team is currently developing a public Zotero library that includes seminal works for the advancement of convergence science and phosphorus sustainability. The library-in-progress is available at the link below; we invite your contributions. Please send relevant citations to steps-contact@ncsu.edu.

Visit the Library
Photo of Jim Elser's book, "Phosphorus: Past and Future"

Jim Elser's New Phosphorus Book Released

In "Phosphorus: Past and Future", world authorities on phosphorus sustainability Jim Elser and Phil Haygarth explain Phosphorus's involvement in biology, human health and nutrition, food production, ecosystem function, and environmental sustainability. The book provides an insider's take on this essential resource and why all of us need to wrestle with the wicked problems this element will cause, illuminate, or eliminate in years to come.

Hear From the Authors
Graphic representing biosensors in the environment

FEAST of Biosensors

Eric McLamore and colleagues recently published a review paper that focuses on innovations in food, environmental, agricultural, and related core sensing technology meta-domains.

Find Out More
Graphic demonstrating bias correction of climate model outputs influences watershed model nutrient load predictions

Bias Correction of Model Outputs Influences Nutrient Load Predictions

Recent work out of Rebecca Muenich's lab demonstrates the impact of bias correcting climate model output on watershed model nutrient load prediction. Bias correction was found to influence hydrological processes and historical and future nutrient load predictions.

Learn More
Professor Natalie Nelson presents her research

Natalie Nelson Named NC State Faculty Scholar

NC State's University Faculty Scholars Program recognizes and rewards emerging academic leaders who demonstrate significant achievement. This year's cohort includes STEPS's Natalie Nelson. Dr. Nelson is an Assistant Professor of Data Analytics and Integrated Modeling in the Biological & Agricultural Engineering Department. Research in Nelson's lab takes a data-intensive, management-focused, and interdisciplinary approach to the study of complex biological system dynamics.

Learn More about the Scholars Program

Big Data's FRST Step in Environmental Stewardship

NC State Professor Deanna Osmond, who helped to initiate STEPS, led a multi-university team in creating the Fertilizer Recommendation Support Tool (FRST). The primary goal of FRST is to increase soil testing transparency by promoting clear and consistent interpretations of fertilizer recommendations by providing the best possible science in order to enhance end-user adoption of nutrient management recommendations.

Find Out More About FRST
global phosphorus flows diagram

Accessing Legacy Phosphorus in Soils

STEPS team members collaborated on a recent review paper that highlights the (1) current knowledge on the occurrence and bioaccessibility of phosphorus in soil, (2) legacy phosphorus transformations with fertilizer applications in relation to their potential bioaccessibility, and (3) approaches and challenges for accessing native soil phosphorus for crop production.

Learn More about Legacy Phosphorus
Farmer in front of field of corn

More Transparency Recommended for Gene-Edited Crops

STEPS team member Dr. Khara Grieger recently published a policy forum paper with Dr. Jennifer Kuzma in the journal Science calling for a coalition of various stakeholders to work together to provide basic information about gene-edited crops to lift the veil on how plants or plant products are modified and the use of gene editing in food supplies.

Why Is Transparency Needed?
Ross Sozzani headshot

STEPS Co-Director Ross Sozzani Awarded AccelNet Grant

This catalytic-level project (Accelerate Integration of Engineering and Agricultural Research using Artificial Intelligence, AI2EAR) will promote strategies to improve yield, reduce crop loss, decrease crop resource demands, and increase food nutrition.

Find Out More
Aerial photo of Caspian Sea

New "Phosphorus Science Now!" Video

Hear the Sustainable Phosphorus Alliance's discussion with Dr. Rich McDowell of Lincoln University in New Zealand. They explored his 2020 Geosciences Data Journal paper "Global database of diffuse riverine nitrogen and phosphorus loads and yields".

Follow the Discussion
Paul Westehoff

Paul Westerhoff Honored with 2020 A.P. Black Research Award

STEPS researcher Paul Westerhoff received the 2020 A.P. Black Research Award from the American Water Works Association (AWWA).

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Nelson with students

Natalie Nelson named Early-Career Research Fellow of the National Academies' Gulf Research Program

Natalie Nelson, assistant professor in the Biological and Agricultural Engineering Department and principal investigator of the Biosystems Analytics Lab, is one of 20 fellowship recipients.

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hurricane from space

Lessening Water Quality Problems Caused by Hurricane-related Flooding

Rising waters from hurricanes can make wastewater treatment plants, sewers, hazardous waste sites, agricultural lands and animal feeding operations overflow, carrying pollutants into waterways.

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Dr. Christine Ogilvie Hendren

Hendren named director of App State Research Institute for Environment, Energy, and Economics

After a national search, Dr. Christine Ogilvie Hendren has been named director of Appalachian State University’s Research Institute for Environment, Energy, and Economics (RIEEE).

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a seedling

ASU and MCC team up with USDA research service to expand agriculture education

Mesa Community College and Arizona State University have partnered with the United States Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) Arid Lands Agricultural Research Center (ALARC) to create new opportunities for agriculture education in the Valley. The collaboration, a result of a three-year, $682,313 grant, created the urban-agriculture nexus project, a course of study between ASU’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering and the MCC Sustainable Agriculture program.

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picture of land and sky

Call receives prestigious CAREER Award

Dr. Douglas Call received a National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award. The overall goal of Call’s CAREER project is to protect human and environmental health by developing treatment technologies that more completely degrade toxic organic pollutants in a cost-effective manner. Call’s primary focus will be on degrading chlorinated solvents, a broad class of chemicals used in everyday products such as paints, pesticides, and cleaning solutions.

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Two trees with and without groundcover

Fabric Mulch Groundcovers Save Water

Water and nutrient management in Florida citrus is a challenging problem. A University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) team is analyzing fabric mulch groundcovers for young lemon trees on a commercial scale. During the last year, the use of groundcovers has shown water savings of 50 percent when combined with soil moisture sensor irrigation scheduling.

Read More
Student in maize field

Álvarez's A-maize-ing Research

Rubén Rellán-Álvarez brings plenty of diverse thought, creativity and teaching to the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Department of Molecular and Structural Biochemistry. Prior to joining CALS in January 2019, Álvarez started a lab in Mexico in 2015 at the National Laboratory of Genomics for Biodiversity.

Learn More about Maize