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Archive for the ‘Environment’ Category

CAHNR in the news

newsprintSome of CAHNR’s people, places and programs made the news recently. The bolded topics are linked to initial media coverage. The roman text links go to additional information.

YouTube. 3-20-17. Posted the testimonial of Richard Dodakian, who suffered exertional heat stroke at the Falmouth Road Race. His life was saved by Korey Stringer Institute staff members. One of those people is Robert Huggins, a postdoctoral fellow in kinesiology, who is on the video.

New York Times. 3-21-17. Quoted Lindsay DiStefano, an associate professor in the Department of Kinesiology, who spoke of the benefits of physical activity in the classroom.

tctMD. 3-21-17. Announced a research conclusion that there is “no convincing evidence of measurable verbal or nonverbal memory dysfunction due to statin medication.” These findings come from the research of Associate Professor Beth Taylor, who a faculty member in the Department of Kinesiology. (more…)

Historical image of the week

View of snow and buildings from Charles Lewis Beach Hall

View of snow and buildings from Charles Lewis Beach Hall. By Jerauld A. Manter. From the UConn Libraries Archives and Special Collections.

CAHNR in the news

Students with mobile devicesSome of CAHNR’s people, places and programs made the news recently. The bolded topics are linked to initial media coverage. The roman text links go to additional information.

UConn Today. 3-13-17. Mentioned an Eversource grant, which will be used to enhance storm preparedness and reduce storm-related power outages, as an example of increased fiscal funding for 2016. The team of researchers and graduate research assistants on that grant include those from the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment. NRE graduate student Amanda Bunce was depicted in the article.

By Patsy Evans

Researchers examine road salt contamination in groundwater and wells

Road Salt Contamination

Deicing salt on the permeable pavement in front of Augustus Storrs Hall, a potential source of groundwater contamination causing mobilization of radium and radon.

Road salt is inescapable during a Northeast winter. Applied as a deicer, it helps prevent accidents, slips and falls. Salt lowers the freezing point of water, accelerating melting and keeping ice from forming when temperatures drop. Despite the benefits to transportation and safety, road salt has serious environmental impacts and presents hazards to human health. Researchers at UConn have recently completed two studies on the Storrs campus, examining how deicers interact with areas surrounding permeable surfaces and discovering a potential radioactive danger.

Mostly a combination of sodium and chloride, road salt chemicals can flow into surface and ground water impacting aquifers, wells, wildlife, flora and drinking water. While these effects have long been publicized, road salt continues to be heavily used due to its low cost and a lack of viable alternatives. The increased use of storm water management systems, particularly in urban settings, has renewed questions about how these contaminants travel and affect the neighboring environment.

A team of UConn researchers, including Professor Gary Robbins of the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment (NRE), Assistant Extension Educator Dr. Mike Dietz of the Department of Extension and Connecticut Sea Grant and NRE graduate students Derek Angel and Lukas McNaboe, investigated how the installation of one popular storm water management system, permeable asphalt, affects road salt contamination of groundwater. Connecticut Sea Grant funded the initial phase of the research. (more…)

Image of the week

Since 1980, the DEEP Wildlife Division’s “Connecticut Bluebird Project” has been distributing rough-cut lumber to organized groups to construct, install, and maintain bluebird nest boxes. This annual program has been highly successful in generating tens of thousands of bluebird boxes and helping restore bluebird populations statewide. Photo: Paul J. Fusco /DEEP Wildlife Division