Coming event at Ohio State on sustaining farming, people despite climate change

Photo of farming despite climate change 3January’s public program by the Environmental Professionals Network will look at humanity’s balancing act: Producing enough food and energy, improving economies and social conditions, and protecting the environment and biological diversity — all while faced with climate change and, by 2050, possibly 2 billion more people on the planet. Read More »

Editorial supports (with caveats) water quality bond issue

A $1 billion statewide bond issue to fund new projects to protect Ohio’s water quality, proposed by the Healthy Water Ohio coalition, “deserves consideration,” said an editorial in yesterday’s Columbus Dispatch:

When cities have to spend billions — a projected $2.7 billion in projects for Columbus alone — to keep sewage from overflowing into water sources, Ohio has a problem.

The coalition’s steering committee includes representatives from conservation groups, business and industry, universities, water suppliers, and agriculture. Bruce McPheron, Ohio State’s interim executive vice president and provost, leads the committee’s working group on research, education and outreach. McPheron was previously dean of CFAES.

Story on clean energy, zero waste at Ohio State

Lew Blaustein of GreenSportsBlog wrote on “How Ohio State is tackling clean energy and zero waste” — including efforts by Ohio Stadium and by CFAES’s research arm, OARDC — yesterday in GreenBiz. Read the story.

Pollinator workshop in Wooster

CFAES’s Bee Lab hosts a workshop on Creating Pollinator Habitat from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 18, in the Shisler Conference Center, OARDC, 1680 Madison Ave., Wooster. The event features about a dozen experts from CFAES and elsewhere speaking on creating pollinator habitat in diverse ecosystems, including vacant urban land, roadsides, field edges, utility rights-of-way, pastures and gardens. Registration is $50 and includes handouts, morning refreshments and lunch. Learn more and register.

Get ready for maple syrup season

Photo of maple trees with taps 2The 2016 Ohio Maple Days program is Jan. 21, 22 and 23 at three locations in central and northeast Ohio. Featured speakers include Gary Graham, head of CFAES’s Maple Syrup Program, and Cornell University maple specialist Steve Childs, whose expertise includes sustainable sugar bush management. (Photo: Josiane Farand, iStock.)

Flip this slag: CFAES team turns brownfield green

Restoring soil 2In Chicago, Nick Basta and colleagues from CFAES’s School of Environment and Natural Resources are helping restore “an 87-acre wasteland of glassy slag” using topsoil made from biosolids. Biosolids are treated sewage sludge (in this case, collected by Chicago’s sewage system); once treated, they’re safe to use, free of pathogens and full of nutrients that help plants grow. In test plots, a biosolids-based soil blend made by Basta and team worked better than a wood-chip-based compost at supporting plants and beneficial soil organisms. The slag is waste from steel mills that used to be on the site. Read more in a story in TerraDaily.

Plants rule! Hear how Thursday

CFAES plant expert Jim Chatfield, who’s engaging, funny and even poetic, plus knows his stuff down to its roots, presents “Trees on Tap: How Plants Rule the Earth” at 7 p.m. tonight at the First Amendment Public House, 150 W. Liberty St. in Wooster. The free public event is part of the Wooster Science Café series.

Cornish named Fellow of National Academy of Inventors

Katrina Cornish, Ph.D., FAAAS,

CFAES’s Katrina Cornish, who holds the Endowed Chair in Bio-based Emergent Materials and is an Ohio Research Scholar, has been named a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, one of two inductees — along with Vice President for Research Caroline Whitacre — from Ohio State this year. Read the story. In her research, Cornish is developing new and more sustainable sources of natural rubber — specifically Russian dandelion and guayule — for growing in Ohio and use by industry. Watch a 2013 video profile.


A bright, shiny honor for CFAES iTunes U course

Shiny appleApple has named Introduction to Environmental Science, an iTunes U course developed by Brian Lower and Kylienne Clark in CFAES’s School of Environment and Natural Resources, one of its best of 2015. iTunes U offers free noncredit courses from several thousand places of learning, including Ohio State.

Helping Ohio school kids not go hungry and be healthy

Fighting hunger, improving healthOSU Extension’s nutrition program for children and teens, which helps fight hunger and improve health, has ramped up nearly ten-fold in the past three years. Still, there’s even more work to be done. Read the story. As CFAES’s statewide outreach arm, OSU Extension makes the college’s expertise available to everyone living in Ohio. (Photo: SNAP-Ed program, Richland County, Ohio.)