An interesting experiment in water pollution management is taking place in the Bronx River estuary near Hunts Point in New York City. Scientists are testing the use of a ‘Mussel Raft’ for addressing nitrogen pollution from treated sewage that ends up in the water from a nearby treatment facility....MORE
A recent analysis of wetland restoration efforts sheds new light on the success of a 100-year history of such work to reclaim these highly important ecosystems. Restoration has been a major undertaking in recent decades as development has damaged and otherwise claimed over half of the wetlands in areas like North America, Europe, Australia, and China.
The WildLab is an iPhone app that allows bird-watching citizens and students to contribute to research about bird populations and distributions. The app helps institutions like the Cornell Lab of Ornithology develop mobile strategies for citizen science initiatives, engaging learners with curricula and projects that contribute to scientific research....MORE
Four new species of bees have been identified in New York State. Among them is Lasioglossum gotham, discovered at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, as small as a grain of rice. It burrows its home underground. The species was distinguished from other tiny look-alikes through DNA bar coding and digital imaging....MORE
A recent study by scientists at the Wildlife Conservation Society has found that urban parks are comparable stopover landscapes to non-urban sites in providing refueling grounds for migrating birds. Researchers examined migrant stopover biology in Prospect Park, Inwood Park and Bronx Park to better understand how birds use city parks during migration....MORE
Scientists at the University of Liverpool are developing a new wind turbine dubbed the “Heat Waver” that uses solar photovoltaic rotors to generate energy even when the wind isn’t blowing. The team, headed by Dr. Joe King, has built a prototype and is currently determining an installation site on which to test it....MORE
Kerb, a progressive landscape architecture publication produced by the RMIT University School of Architecture and Design in Melbourne, Australia, is looking for submissions for its next issue, Paradigms of Nature: Post Natural Futures.
Are we steering in an ‘un-natural’ direction, or taking the evolutionary leap necessary to establish a more integrated mode of co-existence?
Thanks to the huge crowd that came out to Robin Nagle’s talk in our lecture series two weeks back. Standing in front of a fascinating slideshow featuring many of the men and women who keep New York City clean (or–more than that–keep New York City alive, as artist Mierle Ukeles famously phrased it), Robin discussed her academic approach to Sanitation, the stigma we attach to the work San Men and Women do and some hypotheses as to how those stigmas develop and why they stick....MORE
We’re playing catch-up recapping some of our recent events. Last month’s talk by Dr. Steven Handel, Director of the Center for Urban Restoration Ecology (CURE) at Rutgers University, was an informative and engaging overview of Dr. Handel’s work, including a discussion of ‘ecological services’ and why urban ecology is so important....MORE
We meet people all the time who have stories about Fresh Kills. Folks who live nearby, who used to live where the landfill now is, who worked on-site, who were part of the 9/11 recovery effort, who are part of the team working on landfill closure right now....MORE
After a late summer hiatus, our Freshkills Park Talks lecture series resumes next Monday with a talk by Dr. Steven Handel, Director of the Center for Urban Restoration Ecology (CURE) at Rutgers University. CURE’s research and practice focuses on ‘ecological services’ provided by patches of native habitat in urban and other degraded areas, and how to ensure the sustainability of those services with relatively low maintenance costs....MORE
The New York City Urban Field Station is a brand new office, laboratory and residence for visiting and resident urban ecology research activities and researchers, located in Fort Totten Park in Bayside, Queens. The facility is a physical base for The New York City Urban Field Station program, launched in 2006 by the Parks Department and the U.S....MORE
NYC Department of Sanitation Anthropologist-in-Residence Robin Nagle is featured on the cover of the current issue of The Believer (along with Wallace Shawn and “Weird Al” Yankovic!). The issue’s in-depth interview with Dr. Nagle is terrific, covering the ‘cognitive problem’ of garbage, the outlook and perception of Sanitation workers and the role of the anthropologist or archeologist in the study of waste and waste management....MORE
We just dug up this great story from the New York Times in 2000 that features the work of Rutgers restoration ecologist Steven Handel at the Freshkills Park site. Dr. Handel and his students had completed a 16-acre study at the old landfill in the New Jersey Meadowlands when they entered into agreement with the NYC Department of Sanitation to study the rehabilitation of native ecology at the not-yet-closed Fresh Kills Landfill....MORE
Pressured by the FDA to provide more vigilant oversight and worried that poachers may sell oysters from polluted coastal waters to consumers, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has halted its oyster bed restoration projects. This, despite the fact that oyster beds are being deliberately restored to tainted bodies of water throughout the region to rid them of pollutants....MORE
Information and reflection on plastic marine pollution continues to increase: as if the Great Pacific Garbage Patch weren’t cause for enough distress,the Sea Education Association (SEA) recently completed a two-decade study on the Atlantic Ocean and reports that a large volume of discarded plastic also floats in the North Atlantic Gyre, trapped together by ocean currents and causing harm to fish and bird species inhabiting the area....MORE
The Freshkills Park Talks lecture series continues on Tuesday with John McLaughlin, Director of Ecological Services for the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). John designed and oversees the ecological reclamation of the Pennsylvania and Fountain Avenue landfills, sited along Jamaica Bay in Brooklyn....MORE