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biofuel plant

Letter to the Senate on carbon neutrality of forest biomass

Letter signed by 65 research scientists sent to U.S. senators working on the Energy Policy Modernization Act. The Senate has accepted an amendment to the act which would legally designate forest biomass to be "carbon neutral."

De-Extinction, a risky ecological experiment

Genetic engineering may allow us to rebirth close facsimiles of extinct species. But would bringing back a few individuals of a famously gregarious bird like the passenger pigeon truly revive the species, when the great oak forests that sustained them are gone? And if it succeeds, what if the birds don't fit in anymore in our changed world?

baltimore

A New School of Urban Ecology: Contributions from Baltimore

Modern American urban ecology can be said to have come to fruition to a large extent in Baltimore. Of course there are other cities where parallel, reinforcing, or complementary research and engagement activities are taking place, and all contribute to the emerging edifice of contemporary urban ecology. But the work in Baltimore has a distinct flavor that helps understand what is novel about today's urban ecological science.

science policy exchange meeting

Cary Institute and partners launch Science Policy Exchange consortium

Dr. Joshua Ginsberg, President of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, joined with partners from five other research institutions to host “Science for a Sustainable World” a reception to launch the Science Policy Exchange (SPE).

The Hudson and BES data jams

This spring, Cary Institute educators hosted two Data Jams, one in New York’s Hudson Valley and the other in Baltimore, Maryland. Both competitions, now in their second year, challenge middle and high school students to interpret ecological data and creatively communicate their findings to general audiences. 

Remote ecosystems vulnerable to pollution

The Grand Canyon reach of the Colorado River meanders through one of the most remote ecosystems in the United States. It would be easy to assume steep canyon walls and uninhabited shores resulted in pristine waters. But research by Cary Institute’s Dr. Emma Rosi-Marshall and colleagues has found that this isolated part of the Colorado harbors toxic levels of mercury and selenium.

Baltimore school of urban ecology

In 1997, Cary Institute Distinguished Senior Scientist Steward T. A. Pickett formed the Baltimore Ecosystem Study (BES), one of only two National Science Foundation Long Term Ecological Research sites in an urban setting. Under his direction, BES has grown into an interdisciplinary team of more than 150 researchers and collaborators advancing an understanding of how to achieve sustainable, resilient cities.

Wetlands award

Stuart E.G. Findlay has received the Environmental Law Institute’s prestigious National Wetlands Award in recognition of his contributions to freshwater ecology and restoration.

Uwin network

Alan Berkowitz will lead education activities for the Urban Water Innovation Network (UWIN), a consortium of 14 institutions recently awarded $12 million dollars by the National Science Foundation to address threats to urban water systems. Led by Colorado State, partners include the Cary Institute, Princeton University, University of California – Berkeley, University of Maryland – Baltimore County, Arizona State, and Oregon State.  

On Wikipedia, be wary of entries on controversial science

Wikipedia reigns. It’s the world’s most popular online encyclopedia, the sixth most visited website in America, and a source most students rely on. But, according to a recent paper by Dr. Gene E. Likens, Cary Institute President Emeritus, Wikipedia entries on politically controversial science can be unreliable.

luncheon

Supporters’ corner

We are very grateful to supporters who made the 5th Fall Luncheon on the Grounds on September 20, 2015, a resounding success.

From our President

Summer was a bustling and productive time at the Cary Institute. Rick Ostfeld’s field crew continued their mammal and tick surveys – work essential to understanding the ecology of tick-borne disease. Visiting scientist Ken Schmidt and his team spent their 18th season investigating the ecology and behavior of veeries.

Tracking infectious disease

Imagine a world where a computer program could pinpoint the next infectious disease outbreak, guiding response efforts and saving lives. Cary Institute disease ecologist Dr. Barbara Han is bringing this vision closer to reality.

Local artists inspire Cary Institute campers

This summer, the Cary Institute offered a special two-week camp exploring the interface between ecology and art. Cary educators teamed with George Kaye of Ecographs and Laurie Seeman of Strawtown Studio to add a new dimension to stream studies.

The algorithm that's hunting Ebola

In April 2014, just after world health officials identified a series of suspicious deaths in Guinea as an outbreak of Ebola, 10 ecologists, 4 veterinarians, and an anthropologist traveled to a Guinean village named Meliandou. Theirs was a detective mission to determine how this outbreak began. How had "patient zero," a 2-year-old boy named Emile, contracted the Ebola virus?

Aedes aegypti

Reducing mosquitoes Is vital to human health

Dengue fever and chikungunya are transmitted to humans by two species of mosquitos, Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. There are no vaccines for these viral diseases and while not often fatal, they can disable victims with painful symptoms for weeks or months.

snow shovel

Road Salt: Tips for homeowners

Find out what you can do as a homeowner to ensure you are not overusing road salt which can damage metal and concrete, contaminate drinking water, and harm aquatic plants and animals.

Inspiring data literacy

While our trails and grounds are closed for the season, our education staff is gearing up for a busy spring. Field trips and enrichment activities are being scheduled with a focus on data literacy through long-term monitoring. 

Urban ecology in China

This past summer Cary's Steward Pickett was a Visiting International Professor at the Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences in Beijing. The center is part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and home to the State Key Laboratory of Urban and Regional Ecology.

Clarifying the Clean Water Act

By the late 1960s, America’s fresh waters were in crisis. Rivers were catching fire, unsafe E.coli levels were common, and Time Magazine declared Lake Erie dead.

Postdocs in Action

The trees that make up a forest influence its ability to retain carbon and nitrogen, nutrients of concern to ecologists because they impact forest productivity and water quality. 

Supporters' corner

Dr. Joshua Ginsberg’s arrival on September 2nd as president ushered in a whirlwind of activity. 

Road salt overuse harms environment

In the U.S. alone, some 15 million tons of salt is applied to our roadways each year. While its use has real benefits, in terms of safety and navigation, there have been cumulative costs to the environment.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates

The Cary Institute is home to the longest-running Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program in the nation. 

Informing resilient coastal cities

Coastlines make up less than ten percent of the land in the continental U.S., yet they house nearly forty percent of our population. 

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