Science Over Beers
April 10th, 2019, 6 pm at The Taproom
Welcome our speaker Dr. Justin Richardson!
Dr. Justin Richardson examines trace metals in the environment, both for
environmental health and to learn how terrestrial systems work. He
originally hails from Southern California, completing his bachelors
degree in Environmental Science/Soil Science at University of California
Riverside. He moved as far away as possible from sunny beaches and
completed a PhD in Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College in 2015. After
completing a stint as a postdoctoral researcher at Cornell University,
he joined the faculty at UMass Amherst’s geosciences department in 2018.
Learn more about Dr. Richardson’s research here.
Impact of pollution on forest and aquatic ecosystems
Is Lead and mercury pollution across the northeast declining?
Lead and mercury are two pollutants that humans have emitted globally
and have had a significant impact on the northeast. In the northeastern
United States, lead was primarily emitted from combustion of gasoline
while mercury has been released by coal combustion. Here, we will look
at how this has impacted forest and aquatic ecosystems across the region
and consider if things are looking for the better.
March 13th, 2019, 6 pm at The Taproom
Welcome our speaker Prof. Nick Tooker!
Nick Tooker is a Professor of Practice in the Civil & Environmental Engineering Department at UMass Amherst. He has worked and conducted research related to phosphorus in the water environment.
Sustainable Phosphorus Removal and Recovery
How We Get Bugs to Turn Poop Into Fertilizer
Phosphorus is an element that is necessary for life. It is used as a fertilizer to grow food. However, our planet is running out of phosphate rock, which is used to make fertilizer. And there is no element that we can use to replace phosphorus for growing food! The good news is that we can recover phosphorus from water that flows down your sink, washing machine, or toilet.
There are bacteria that store tremendous amounts of phosphorus, and we can engineer systems to grow them. My research has focused on how to do a better job of growing these bacteria at your local water resource recovery facility so that we can make fertilizer. The bacteria we grow are essentially taking your poop and turning it into a high quality fertilizer!