Video Transcript Water Science Program: Water is one of the greatest resource challenges of the 21st century. And there’s nowhere like UW-Green Bay to study Water Science. With miles of laboratory at four coastal campuses, you can pursue your passion and help secure clean water for future generations. Learn water systems above and below the surface. Experience hands-on research in water quality and water quantity issues critical to our region, state and world.
These innovative efforts would not have been possible without the Door County community, DCIST partners and amazing seasonal staff members. These include Sam Hoffman and Tina Lee of the Door County Soil and Water Conservation Department; Andrew Bowker, Jacob Smither and Britney Hirsch of UW-Green Bay; and Ben Epley of The Ridges Sanctuary.
The Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin (FWC) awarded $122,000 to Assistant Professor Michael Holly (Environmental Science, Water Science) to lead a working group to investigate the environmental transport of PFAS. Research completed by the Sustainable Use of Biosolids (SUBS) working group (including PIs at UW-Platteville, Madison, and Stevens Point) will provide training and laboratory experience for undergraduate students at each campus. Completed work will help predict future PFAS groundwater contamination from soils receiving biosolids, facilitate generation of future land application guidelines to protect groundwater wells from PFAS, identify Wisconsin groundwater sources at risk, and evaluate a low-cost treatment to further minimize PFAS leaching.
UW-Green Bay professors and instructors, including John Luczaj (Geoscience, Water Science) is accommodating field trips this season for Natural and Applied Sciences, transforming existing and new trips into virtual interactive experiences because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In Spring and Summer 2020, virtual field trips were offered in at least four classes two new excursions are planned for this fall. Students can virtually visit De Pere Lock and Dam, Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary, Baraboo Hills and the Metro Boat Launch, to name a few.
Modern technology allowed for COVID-19 friendly virtual adaptations of the Geoscience program’s signature field trips. The goal, according to Luczaj, is for students to experience what they might have gotten in an outdoor laboratory or field trip pre-pandemic, and to give them the exposure and confidence to visit the sites on their own one day.
Assistant Prof. Shawn Malone (NAS) and lecturer Bill Jacobson (NAS) are assisting in the creation of the virtual field trips.
Luczaj explains, “Geology of the Lake Superior Region field course (spring ’20), for instance, is normally a four-day field trip in the spring. Students had seven lectures/trips on different topics throughout the region. While not all trips had video associated with them, I was able to incorporate online tools, mapping, and other information into the photo/video part of the trip for an enhanced experience.”
During the summer, Professor Luczaj was able to take his catalog of photos from past field trip stops to incorporate in the online version. For the new Water Science program, he traveled to all field trip stops around Green Bay and was able to record the footage with his cell phone. He recorded his computer screen for relevant website tools like the Great Lakes Dashboard, aerial photographs, and maps to provide videos of things students would not actually see on a bus trip.
“The Water Science trip demonstrates various water related natural and engineered structures in Brown County,” he explains. The trip starts at the De Pere Lock and Dam along the Fox River. A full cycle of operation of the lock is demonstrated so students can see how the boats can pass through. The next few stops describe the East and Fox River systems and associated flooding. The last stops are at the Metro Boat Launch to show the geography, shipping, and erosion from high water, followed with a discussion on sewage treatment. We make a quick stop at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary to look at their deep irrigation well.”
The new Geoscience Field Trip to the Baraboo Hills trip will cover an overview of the major mountain building events that assembled Wisconsin, how the original sandstone was deposited in Baraboo before it was turned into quartzite, site specific structural geology where students can view structural fabrics on the rocks during folding and tectonic compression and Paleozoic history. Prof. Luczaj mentored Malone, a new addition to the Geoscience program, to highlight the links between familiar tectonic processes from around the world and Wisconsin’s geologic history while introducing him to the program’s field experiences.
Luczaj says that field experiences are critical for students in the department. Keeping COVID-19 in mind, he didn’t want students who were graduating soon to miss out on opportunities they had before the pandemic.
Story by UW-Green Bay Marketing and University Communication intern Charlotte Berg.
This week, conservation professionals and volunteers from UW-Green Bay, Ducks Unlimited, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and UW-Madison Division of Extension seeded 2,000 pounds of rice across the coastal wetlands of the Bay of Green Bay.
Assistant Prof. Michael Holly (Water Science, Resch School of Engineering) announced a number of publications and grants. Publications: Holly, M. A., Gunn, K. M., Rotz, C. A., & Kleinman, P. J. A. (2019). Management characteristics of Pennsylvania dairy farms *. Applied Animal Science, 35(3), 325–338. Kleinman, P. J. A., Spiegal, S., Liu, J., Holly, M., Church, C., & Ramirez-Avila, J. (2019). Managing Animal Manure to Minimize Phosphorus Losses from Land to Water. In H. M. Waldrip, P. H. Pagliari, & Z. He (Eds.), Animal Manure: Production, Characteristics, Environmental Concerns and Management (pp. 201–228). Rotz, C. A., Stout, R. C., Holly, M. A., & Kleinman, P. J. A. (2020). Regional environmental assessment of dairy farms. Journal of Dairy Science, 103(4).
Funded grants: Lead PI, Evaluation of Filter Media for Phosphorus Removal in Agricultural Runoff Treatment Systems. Submitted March 2020 to the UW System Undergraduate Water Research Fellowship Program, total amount requested $10,000. Status: Successfully funded, project initiated in August 2020 Lead PI, Hybrid and Online Program Development Proposal: Development of a Hybrid Environmental Engineering Technology Program. Submitted May 2020 to the UWGB Online or Hybrid Development Grant, total amount requested $30,000. Lead PI, Active Learning of Sustainability Assessment through a FYS Group Project. Submitted January 2020 to the UWGB Sustainability Teaching Development Grant, total amount requested $1,000. Status: Successfully funded.
“The public knows much more about Great Lakes coastal wetlands than it did ten years ago. In those ten years, the information gathered through the Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands Monitoring Program has led to and supported dozens of advances in Great Lakes science while helping nail down the shifting nature of ecosystem health for a vital part of the Great Lakes system.”
On Tuesday, March 10, 2020, in honor of International Women’s Day this past Sunday, Associate Prof. Rebecca Abler (Water Science), Associate Prof. Amy Kabrhel (Natural and Applied Sciences), Assistant Prof. Breeyawn Lybbert (Natural and Applied Sciences) and Associate Prof. Megumi Onoda (Mathematics and Statistics) held a panel discussion on Women in STEM. If you couldn’t make it in person, you can watch online now.
UW-Green Bay Prof. Kevin Fermanich (Water Science, Geoscience and Environmental Science) has been named the 2020 NEW Watershed Champion. He formally received this recognition on Tuesday, March 10, 2020 from NEW Water and the Green Bay Water Utility during the 2020 World Water Day event.
Prof. Fermanich is a lead co-principal investigator on a collaborative project studying the links between edge-of-field water quality, soil health and field management at sites in Great Lakes priority watersheds. Additionally, he is a soil and water resources specialist with Wisconsin Extension.
Fermanich was recognized at the seventh annual World Water Day event hosted by NEW Water, the brand of the Green Bay Metropolitan Sewerage District, and the Green Bay Water Utility at the Jack Day Environmental Education Center. World Water Day (www.worldwaterday.org) is a commemorative event launched by the United Nations in 1993 to bring awareness to global water issues. The two water entities honor World Water Day to call attention to local water issues, including aging infrastructure and impairments, and to celebrate the efforts of a local champion in caring for the watersheds of Wisconsin.
The theme of this year’s World Water Day is “Water and Climate Change.” Globally, this means an increasing demand for water as populations increase, which can drain natural resources and cause environmental damage.
“The Green Bay Water Utility is adapting to address the water effects of climate change to continue to protect health and safety to our customers,” said Nancy Quirk, general manager of the Green Bay Water Utility.
Fermanich has worked at UW-Green Bay since 1998. Along with many partners, Fermanich and his students study water quality, watershed management, soil health, Green Bay restoration, and agricultural management issues. He is a lead co-principal investigator on a collaborative project studying the links between edge-of-field water quality, soil health, and field management at sites in Great Lakes priority watersheds. Additionally, Fermanich is a soil and water resources specialist with Wisconsin Extension.
“Our era faces a number of water challenges, not only globally, but here in Wisconsin as well. Dr. Fermanich exemplifies the spirit of working together to find solutions to the many vexing water challenges we’re facing today,” said Tom Sigmund, Executive Director of NEW Water.
This post is written in cooperation with NEW Water. Photo submitted by Tricia Garrison, NEW Water. In the photo, from left to right, Tom Sigmund, executive director, NEW Water; Prof. Kevin Fermanich and Nancy Quirk, general manager, Green Bay Water Utility
Could Wisconsin establish itself as the “Silicon Valley of Water”? That’s what the University of Wisconsin System is trying to do with the launch of a Freshwater Collaborative that will bring together its 13 campuses into a first-of-its-kind research hub focused on water topics.