University of Delaware
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Environmental news from Delaware and the surrounding region.

UDaily: UD professor reports on coastal ocean response to global warming acceleration and hiatus
11/17/2015 -

In a new paper out in Nature Scientific Reports today, the University of Delaware’s Xiao-Hai Yan and colleagues report on the coastal ocean response to global warming acceleration and hiatus.

The so-called global warming “hiatus” refers to the possible temporary slow-down of the global mean surface temperature trend said to have been occurring since 1998. 

While many studies have focused on the mechanisms that caused the purported hiatus, few have paid attention to the coastal effects. Yan believes this area of study is critical as approximately 50 percent of the world’s population lives within 124 miles of coastal waters, with many more relying on the world’s coasts for commerce and natural resources. 

11/13/2015 -

Wind turbines seven miles off South Jersey’s coast got a step closer to reality Monday after two companies won a federal auction to lease a combined 344,000 acres for possible wind power development. RES Americas Developments Inc. bid $881,000 to lease 160,480 acres. US Wind Inc. bid about $1 million for 183,353 acres, the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management said. Cape May-based Fishermen’s Energy was the only other company to take part among 13 potential bidders.

UDaily: Delaware's real-time environmental monitoring system makes billionth observation
11/13/2015 -

Meteorological and atmospheric conditions are constantly fluctuating and are important to monitor in real-time. State agencies, the emergency management community, private companies and farmers all depend on environmental monitoring data on a day-to-day basis to make critical decisions. The Delaware Environmental Observing System (DEOS), “a real-time environmental data service provider for the state of Delaware and surrounding region,” recently reached its one billionth environmental data measurement. DEOS celebrated 10 years as Delaware’s real-time environmental data source in February 2014.

11/13/2015 -

A common bacteria in coastal waters, including Delaware's inland bays, may be an important tool to control harmful algae blooms that cause life-threatening illnesses like shellfish poisoning and trigger massive fish kills. The bacteria, called Shewanella, destroys the algae from the inside out, said Kathryn Coyne, a researcher on a project to learn more about the bacteria, the toxins it produces and the role it plays in the aquatic ecosystem.

UDaily: UD doctoral candidate investigates how rainwater travels in urban forests
11/13/2015 -

Forests cover approximately 30 percent of the Earth’s surface. They play an important role in purifying air, preventing soil erosion and maintaining proper balance in water resources. How rain makes its way into a forest’s soil can affect soil chemistry, groundwater recharge and, ultimately, forest health and productivity.

UD Research Magazine: DENIN affiliate Angelia Seyfferth featured in latest issue
11/13/2015 -

Having had the chance to conduct research taking water samples on the Chesapeake Bay early in her undergraduate studies, Angelia Seyfferth, assistant professor in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, is hoping to pass her enthusiasm for research to young scholars in her lab.

Seyfferth’s research at UD focuses on arsenic in rice, a topic for which she received a prestigious Faculty Early Career Development Award from the National Science Foundation. It recognizes faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within their organizations.

UDaily: New UD study looks at adding rice residue to lower arsenic, improve crop yields
11/11/2015 -

A new study by University of Delaware researchers considers how adding silica-rich rice residue -- such as husks, straw and the ash of those materials -- to improve crop yields and decrease arsenic uptake may affect the soils in which rice plants are grown. 

The results of the study were recently published in Plant and Soil, an international journal on plant-soil relationships. 

The study was carried out by Evanise Penido, a visiting student from the Federal University of Lavras (UFLA) in Brazil.

11/08/2015 -

By 2025, Chesapeake Bay watershed states aim to drastically reduce the amount of pollutants and sediment they put into bay waterways. Using everything from new stormwater equipment to tree plantings, they're working toward ambitious goals set by the Environmental Protection Agency six years ago. But states like Delaware aren't on track to meet 2017 halfway point milestones. As Delaware Public Media's Annie Ropeik reports, a lack of state funding is limiting options -- and failing to meet EPA goals could only make it worse.

11/08/2015 -

For centuries, cod were the backbone of New England's fisheries and a key species in the Gulf of Maine ecosystem. Today, cod stocks are on the verge of collapse, hovering at 3-4 percent of sustainable levels. Even painful cuts to the fishery have failed to slow this rapid decline, surprising both fishers and fisheries managers.

11/08/2015 -

When Hurricane Sandy made landfall just north of Atlantic City three years ago, it swept away homes, beaches and dunes. But the storm left another legacy: a shift in the approach state, federal and local regulators take to make shorelines storm ready and resilient. From New England to the Carolinas, dredges have pumped millions of cubic yards of sand, in the three years since Sandy struck, to build storm-ready beaches and form engineered sand dunes. The trend is coast-long, even in places where the strategy had been to allow nature to take its course.