delware environmental institute


Environmental news from Delaware and the surrounding region.

12/09/2011 -


Contact: Melanie Rapp, Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

DNREC, Clean Air Council and DuPont announce air quality investments in New Castle
Electrifies outlets at Trinity Distribution Services improve quality of life for neighbors

NEW CASTLE, (Dec. 9, 2011) – Neighbors of Trinity Distribution Services in New Castle are benefitting from an environmentally-friendly project that improves air quality and the quality of life for residents in neighborhoods adjacent to the facility. Twenty diesel generators used to power refrigerated storage containers at the company’s Roger Road site have been replaced with electrified outlets, significantly reducing air pollutants, diesel fumes and noise in the community.

 “We’re looking for ways to make our air cleaner to breathe,” said Governor Jack Markell. “These electrified outlets provide a cleaner, safe, effective alternative to diesel. Together, we’re making progress eliminating odors and noise while reducing health risks in the community.”

Six newly-hatched green sea turtles to make journey to North Carolina for eventual release into ocean
12/07/2011 -

LEWES (Dec. 6, 2011) – This morning, three more siblings have joined the three baby green sea turtles that hatched Sunday in a climate-controlled room at the University of Delaware's College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment in Lewes. Early tomorrow morning, the six tiny turtles will embark on the first leg of their journey back to the sea.Since ocean temperatures off the Delaware coast are now too cold for the newly hatched turtles, the turtles, along with more than 180 unhatched eggs, will be transported to Morehead City, N.C., where they will be released into warmer waters.


12/06/2011 -

The first phase of the pilot body burden research study for the Millsboro area has been completed by Delaware’s Division of Public Health (DPH) and Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), in collaboration with  Research Triangle Institute (RTI). Funded by the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) and DNREC, the study is an important first step in the expanded analysis of air quality and environmental exposure levels in humans and the factors that may contribute to a higher than average rate of cancer and other respiratory illnesses in the area.

Centered on ethics:  New center and website serve as a focal point for ethics education, research and outreach at UD
12/06/2011 -

The College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), in collaboration with the Delaware Environmental Institute, has launched the new Center for Science, Ethics and Public Policy (SEPP) at the University of Delaware and with it a revamped website.

Since the founding of the SEPP program at the Delaware Biotechnology Institute in 2007, participating faculty have sponsored educational, research and outreach initiatives both on and off campus. The Center for SEPP will continue these activities, including the Science Café, the RAISE research ethics seminar for graduate students, a yearly research ethics workshop for undergraduates, support for undergraduate and graduate student research, and (with Arizona State University) a two-week science and technology policy orientation in Washington, D.C.

“The experience and support that we've gained from collaborations on eight federal and state grants—in areas as diverse as research ethics, nanotechnology, nature-inspired engineering and food security—have enabled us to lead inquiry into the ethical and public policy dimensions of science, engineering and emerging technologies,” said Thomas M. Powers, assistant professor of philosophy and director of the center. (full article)

It's elemental: Paper in prestigious international journal celebrates discovery of iodine
12/06/2011 -

It's not every day that an element gets to celebrate a bicentennial, and a University of Delaware professor is pleased to have been invited to the "birthday party" for iodine, which was discovered in 1811.

George Luther, Maxwell P. and Mildred H. Harrington Professor at UD, is one of 11 internationally recognized co-authors on a paper commemorating 200 years of iodine research. The paper appeared on Friday, Dec. 2, in Angewandte Chemie, one of the prime chemistry journals in the world.

Most of us think of iodine as a liquid that comes in a little brown bottle to help heal cuts or as something that gets mixed in with table salt to prevent goiter. But the element that appears as number 53 in the periodic table was actually discovered during the Napoleonic Wars when French chemist Bernard Courtois was searching for an alternative to wood ashes as a feedstock for the production of saltpeter. Today, iodine has applications ranging from pharmaceuticals to semiconductors. (full article)

Luther honored: University of Delaware marine chemist named AAAS Fellow
12/02/2011 -

George Luther, Maxwell P. and Mildred H. Harrington Professor at the University of Delaware, has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Designation as a fellow of AAAS is an honor bestowed upon members by their peers. Luther and the other new fellows will be recognized for their contributions to science and technology during the AAAS Fellows Forum at the association’s annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, on Feb. 18, 2012.

Luther was selected for “distinguished service in applications of electrochemistry to elucidate biogeochemical processes in marine environments and towards defining element speciation in marine waters and sediments.” (full article)

Soil solutions: UD doctoral student in soil science receives Dixon Award
11/30/2011 -

Chunmei Chen, a University of Delaware doctoral student in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, was chosen to receive the Dixon Award for best graduate student presentation in soil mineralogy at the recent 2011 Soil Science Society of America meeting in San Antonio.

Chen received a $500 award for being recognized as having the best Division S-9 student presentation, with the selection based on quality of presentation and contribution of the research to advancing the state of knowledge of soil mineralogy.

11/30/2011 -

More public comment sought for Delaware plan for cleaner instate streams and Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Soil science award winners:  Department of Plant and Soil Sciences cultivates next leaders
11/29/2011 -

University of Delaware-trained plant and soil scientists continue to build on the institution's stellar reputation, with six winning recent national honors.

One graduate student and five graduate alumni of the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences in UD's College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) were presented awards by the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) and the American Society of Agronomy (ASA) at the national meetings of the societies in San Antonio, Texas.

Honorees are alumni Josh McGrath, Chad Penn and Amy Shober, who were advised by Tom Sims, CANR deputy dean and T.A. Baker Professor of Soil and Environmental Chemistry; Daniel Strawn and Kirk Scheckel, who were advised by Donald L. Sparks, S. Hallock du Pont Professor of Soil and Environmental Chemistry and director of the Delaware Environmental Institute; and Sudarshan Dutta, who recently completed his doctorate under the direction of Shreeram Inamdar, associate professor of plant and soil sciences. (full article)

11/22/2011 -

Contact: Carol Riggs, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
State issues permit to transform NRG Dover Energy Center
Project will reduce air emissions by more than 90 percent and create up to 75 jobs

DOVER (Nov. 22, 2011) – Governor Jack Markell and DNREC Secretary Collin O’Mara announced that an air quality construction permit has been issued to NRG Energy Center Dover for a project that will transform its current coal-fueled facility in Kent County into one of the nation’s cleanest power plants.
The Governor and Secretary O’Mara met with NRG Thermal President Michael Carroll at the facility today to tour the plant and see the numerous planned improvements.  The Governor also announced that NRG will receive a $500,000 grant from the Delaware Energy Efficiency Investment Fund, its first, which was established last year by the Delaware General Assembly (HB 129). The program helps local businesses making strategic capital equipment investments that reduce operating costs and support job creation, while reducing energy consumption and improving environmental performance. The project will create up to 75 construction jobs over the course of a year.