delware environmental institute


Environmental news from Delaware and the surrounding region.

Sustainable campus:  UD community invited to submit grant applications for environmental projects
10/18/2012 -

The University of Delaware Sustainability Task Force invites the UD community to submit grant applications for projects that address sustainability issues.

The task force will be awarding $20,000 in grants to selected projects, with preference given to projects that are consistent with the goals of the University Climate Action Plan and the mission of the task force.

Faculty and staff created the University of Delaware Sustainability Fund (UDSF) to stimulate innovative opportunities to develop a more sustainable campus.

Watershed symposium:  UD research presented at White Clay Creek symposium
10/06/2012 -

Faculty and students from the University of Delaware presented research on watershed issues at a recent symposium that brought together a variety of stakeholders with shared interest and expertise in ecosystems.

The Sept. 25 White Clay Creek symposium, hosted by the White Clay Wild and Scenic Management Committee at the redesigned Stroud Water Research Center campus in Avondale, Pa., was the first of its kind in many years.

Presentations were given by individuals representing a variety of watershed health and management perspectives and included a broad range of topics, from current research on native fish and mussel populations, to sediment source and impacts, to the detail of southern Chester County’s approach to stormwater permit applications.

Green roof: Members of UD, Delaware community celebrate green roof completion
10/03/2012 -

U.S. Sen. Tom Carper and members of the Delaware community joined University of Delaware students and faculty on Friday, Sept. 28, at Colburn Laboratory to celebrate the completion of the University’s first green roof on a classroom building.

The environmentally friendly green roof was made possible thanks to grant funding and some unique engineering by the school’s landscape design program.

“This new green roof project at the University of Delaware is a great example of the power of public-private partnerships,” Carper said. “With support from the state of Delaware, DuPont and the University of Delaware, this project is helping to lower energy use, clean the air and teach sustainable environmental practices to future generations at the same time.” 

Cracking the oyster's code: International team of scientists finds adaptations to stress in oyster genome
09/24/2012 -

When it comes to stress, oysters know how to deal. The tough-shelled mollusks can survive temperature fluctuations, toxic metals and exposure to air, and a new study of their genetic makeup is helping to explain how. An international team of scientists, including the University of Delaware’s Patrick M. Gaffney, professor of marine biosciences, sequenced the genome of the Pacific oyster, Crassostrea gigas, in a Nature paper published on Sept. 19.

The people pipeline: Student's story illustrates how EPSCoR supports developing scientists
09/19/2012 -

Just as laboratories need pipelines for water and natural gas, they also need a “pipeline” that provides a continuous supply of people able to conduct research there. Making sure the people pipeline is full of well-trained individuals from its source in the elementary grades to its outlet in the academic and commercial laboratories of the world is one of the most important goals of Delaware’s Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, or EPSCoR.

09/19/2012 -

The University of Delaware Sustainability Task Force has announced the second annual Regional Sustainability Institute, which will be held Friday, Nov. 2, in the Perkins Student Center. The institute brings together a wide variety of members of the UD community invested in sustainability, with representatives from Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., and New Jersey.

09/19/2012 -

After more than a year of study of the risks posed by sea level rise, Delaware’s Sea Level Rise Advisory Committee has completed its statewide Sea Level Rise Vulnerability Assessment report. Results of the assessment show that sea level rise is a statewide issue: all three counties and 31 of the state’s 57 cities and towns will be directly impacted. The report is available for download on DNREC’s website at

State of Delaware Estuary:  Kauffman contributes to report by Partnership for the Delaware Estuary
09/15/2012 -

Gerald Kauffman, director of University of Delaware’s Water Resources Agency, joined a group of local scientists to author a report on the Delaware Estuary that delivered both promising and cautionary news.

While the Delaware River and Bay continue to recover from the devastating effects of pollution, many species that inhabit the water are in danger, the report states.

The “State of the Estuary Report” was released by the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary on Sept. 6 in Wilmington. Last released in 2008, it assesses many factors that contribute to the health of the estuary, such as the species that inhabit the water, the surrounding land areas and the effects of local human population.

Wind power's potential:  UD-Stanford team calculates maximum global energy potential from wind
09/11/2012 -

Wind turbines could power half the world’s future energy demands with minimal environmental impact, according to new research published by University of Delaware and Stanford University scientists in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The researchers arrived at the determination by calculating the maximum theoretical potential of wind power worldwide, taking into account the effects that numerous wind turbines would have on surface temperatures, water vapor, atmospheric circulations and other climatic considerations.

“Wind power is very safe from the climate point of view,” said Cristina Archer, associate professor of geography and physical ocean science and engineering at UD.

Geophysical turbulence: UD researchers contribute to workshop on environmental multiphase flows
09/05/2012 -

Cloud droplets are central to Earth's energy balance and to the water cycle, sea sprays play an important role in hurricane dynamics and air bubbles in the ocean’s boundary layer alter the acoustical and optical properties of ocean water. These examples of environmental multiphase turbulent flows represent an emerging research area that combines the complexities of turbulent flow, multiphase and multi-scale physics and environmental applications. Eleven University of Delaware researchers contributed to a workshop designed to increase understanding of these and other multiphase turbulent flows in the atmosphere and ocean that was held at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colo., Aug. 13-17.