S.H.I.R.A. (Spawning Habitat Integrated Rehabilitation Approach)

Principal Investigator: Greg Pasternack
Project Motivation:
Societal use of rivers is important to meet many human needs, but has come at the cost of significant degradation of rivers. Different people advocate for balancing the needs of the ecosystem and the potential of the human imagination for utilizing rivers at different levels for different rivers. We propose that in the case where a high level of human alteration to a river will be maintained, benefits to the ecosystem are possible through spawning habitat rehabilitation below dams. Read more...

Tropical Biogeochemistry: Investigating nitrogen and phosphorus cycles in the Bladen Nature Reserve

Principal Investigators: Joy B. Winbourne, Dr. Steven Brewer, and Dr. Benjamin Z. Houlton.
Background/Motivation: Tropical forests play a disproportionate role in regulating global climate; while only representing 12% of the land surface, tropical forests perform 40% of all photosynthesis on land, helping to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere (1). Nutrients – primarily nitrogen and phosphorus – limit plant growth and therefore the ability of forests to capture carbon via photosynthesis – especially with rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide due to human activity (2, 3). Understanding the factors that influence the abundance of these essential plant nutrients in tropical forests will improve our ability to predict the pace and magnitude of global climate change (4). Read more...

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