This project continues our ongoing research investigating the contributions of roadside ditch networks to water resource quantity and quality. It specifically addresses the potential for ditches to rapidly transport pathogens, nutrients, and other contaminants from agricultural fields to downstream drinking water supply systems. We have used a combination of two approaches: a) automated collection of storm flow in ditches adjacent to ag fields with immediate sampling for coliforms, and b) GIS based modeling to determine ditch routing efficiency.
This project is bridging the perpetual gap between scientific advances and environmental protection by finding ways to better predict where runoff and, by association, pollution is generated in the landscape. We refer to these runoff source areas as "hydrologically sensitive areas" or HSAs. Over three decades of research by Cornell's Soil and Water Lab has clearly shown that HSAs often appear in areas of the landscape where the soil is especially prone to saturating. Furthermore, it is clear that traditional water quality models and dogmas are based on assumptions that miss these areas.
Water-related issues continue to grow more critical in many parts of the world. Resolving these issues will depend in part on education to ensure responsible future behavior for tomorrow`s leaders. Teaching activities from Project WET`s Curriculum Guide for K-12 will help ensure responsible and sustainable behavior toward water.
This research program is aimed at improving the sustainability of the floriculture industry by developing practices that allow producers to produce high-value crops while using fertilizers, water, and energy resources efficiently. For example, floriculture yield losses often result from poor irrigation water quality or improper fertilization practices. The improved efficiency of water and fertilizers has the potential to decrease fertilizer leaching which will help protect our state's water resources.
Conversion of lands in the Northeast to perennial grass bioenergy crops is not merely a future possibility; it is already underway. These crops provide net energy returns that are greater than conventional row crops, as well as such ecosystem benefits as increased organic matter levels in soil, reduced erosion potential, and low fertilizer and pesticide requirements.
My applied research involves the evaluation of vegetated filter areas to improve water management and water quality for the benefit of agricultural production, society, and the environment.
Cornell University Cooperative Extension-NYC is co-leading a 2.5 year national project that involves approximately 60 schools in 4 States in a randomized controlled trial examining effects of school gardens on fruit and vegetable consumption and other outcomes.
PROJECT 1: "We`re bringing together a select group of faculty from a range of disciplines, including anthropology, biology, demography, economics, human development, policy analysis, psychology, sociology, and women`s studies. The aim of the working group will be to put Cornell at the forefront of research on the family." (Quote from Elizabeth Peters, project leader, professor, Policy Analysis and Management, College of Human Ecology.)\n\nPROJECT 2: This project seeks to understand patterns of cooperation and conflict within family groups.
This research program is aimed at improving the sustainability of the floriculture industry by developing practices that allow producers to produce high-value crops while using fertilizers, water and energy resources efficiently. For example, floriculture yield losses often result from poor irrigation water quality or improper fertilization practices. The improved efficiency of water and fertilizers has the potential to decrease fertilizer leaching, which will help protect our state's water resources.
Water is a limited resource with increasing multi-purpose uses. Rice production uses more water than any other crop. Means are being sought to get "more crop per drop". Among practices being examined are aerobic rice, alternating wetting and drying and the System of Rice Intensification. We are working to understand changes that occur in the rice rhizosphere during periods of wetting and drying and how these changes affect nutrient availability and retention, greenhouse gas emissions, and crop yield.