Sustainability... In Business

Oct. 2: Butanol’s beauty as biofuel

CFAES’s Thaddeus “Teddy” Ezeji speaks on “Butanol Production from Lignocellulosic Biomass: Challenges and Opportunities” at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 2, in 081 Halterman Hall at the Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute, 1328 Dover Road, in Wooster. Ezeji is an associate professor in the Department of Animal Sciences. Butanol, which can be used in place of gasoline as fuel in car engines, can be made from plant-based biomass. A 2013 story in Fortune called it “The fuel that could be the end of ethanol.” ATI is CFAES’s two-year degree-granting unit. Among its majors is an associate of science degree in renewable energy. Details:

Sept. 25: Past, present and future of renewable energy in Ohio

EO2.e3760a873ea2da1ff8e019af22b1791fEric Romich, pictured, left, energy development field specialist for CFAES’s outreach arm, OSU Extension, presents “Renewable Energy in Ohio: Historical Perspective, Current Trends and Future Projections” at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 25, in 081 Halterman Hall, 1328 Dover Road, at the Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster. An email about the talk says Romich “finds himself ‘in the trenches’ for the university on a daily basis.” He’s also a member of ATI’s Renewable Energy Program advisory panel. ATI is CFAES’s two-year degree-granting unit. It offers among its majors an associate of science degree in renewable energy. Details:

Food pH sensor, developed by CFAES scientists, also may help study oceans

A pH sensor originally developed by CFAES scientists for the food industry, designed to measure the acidity of food processed under high pressure, may end up serving double duty — by measuring the pH of water deep in the ocean, a place under pressure as well (literally, due simply to the weight of the water; figuratively, due to carbon dioxide-fueled ocean acidification). Read the story.

In case you missed it

More than 310,000 people participated in the People’s Climate March in New York City on Sunday — the largest climate change protest in global history and one of America’s largest mass protests of any kind. Other rallies drew 40,000 in London, England; 30,000 in Melbourne, Australia; and 4,000 in Berlin. In all, more than 2,800 rallies took place in 166 countries on Sunday, part of a worldwide call for action to address global warming. Slideshows in, among others, the Guardian (UK), the Mail & Guardian (South Africa), Rolling Stone and The New Yorker.

Oct. 14: How to stop algal blooms, keep drinking water safe

picture of child drinking water 2October’s monthly breakfast program by the Environmental Professionals Network will look at preventing another Toledo water crisis. Jeff Reutter, head of the Ohio Sea Grant College Program, will moderate two panel discussions — one on scientific solutions to reducing phosphorus runoff, including new on-farm practices and technology; and one on policy, such as new laws, rules and outreach. Details.

Protecting, improving our water? Ohio State is ‘well positioned to lead the way’

picture from water quality videoCFAES Dean Bruce McPheron, Ohio State President Michael V. Drake and others, speaking Sept. 16 at Farm Science Review, talk about Ohio State’s new $1 million Field to Faucet water quality initiative. Watch (6:02). Previous related post.

‘The work that needs to be done’

Brownfield Ag News reports on yesterday’s announcement by CFAES Dean Bruce McPheron of Ohio State’s new Field to Faucet water quality initiative (with link to audio). Previous related post.

‘World’s largest archive of climate data,’ and how it can help you

The next webinar by Ohio State’s Climate Change Outreach Team features Doug Kluck and Deke Arndt, both of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center. The center is the world’s largest archive of weather and climate data. Their talk, “NOAA Climate Resources,” noon to 1 p.m., Sept. 25, will cover how NOAA monitors climate change and how citizens can tap into the agency’s information.

Dean announces $1 million water quality initiative

CFAES Dean Bruce McPheron, speaking at the college’s annual Farm Science Review trade show, today announced the creation of a new university-wide water quality initiative. Called Field to Faucet, the effort will seek end-to-end solutions to hazardous algal blooms and water quality issues.

“Toledo was a wakeup call,” said McPheron, speaking to a crowd of 700 at the Review’s opening-day luncheon. “Just over a month ago, the city of Toledo awoke to the news that parents could not draw water from their taps for their children. Restaurants were shuttered, parks were closed, citizens wondered whether to eat food washed in tap water and whether to shower.”

Read the story … 

Into the blue

picture of clean blue water for GBWorth a read: Ohio’s water issues are the focus of a recent column by Farm and Dairy Editor Susan Crowell, who quotes, among others, OARDC Director Steve Slack. OARDC is CFAES’s research arm. (Photo: iStock.)