Water Expertise in Hydrology, Geology & Climate
Area of Water Expertise: Pre-European stream forms and hydrologies; role of beaver in stream form and function, stream response to changes in grazing practices; hydrologic response to climate change
Water-Related Courses Taught: Climate Change and Society (GEOG 352); Geopolitics (GEOG 320). I also taught Water Resources at Willamette University.
Water-Related Research: I am interested in how environmental communities provide important services to human economies, and to better understand how social groups could work more cooperatively with those communities. I have worked extensively in Oregon on the role of beaver in transforming watershed processes. I am currently developing a habitat suitability model for beaver re-introduction for the entire state of Oregon.
Water-Related Community Connections: I am a member of the Beaver Work Group organized through Occidental Arts & Ecology Center and participate in North Bay Climate Adaptation Initiative (NBCAI) program.
Tom Buckley, Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, SSU
Area of Water Expertise: plant water relations; forest water use and physiological regulation; theoretical and computational modeling of plant-atmosphere carbon and water flux
Water-Related Courses Taught: Plant Physiology (Biol 348); Global Change Biology (Biol 500S)
Water-Related Research: My research focuses on creating rigorous yet efficient and scalable models of plant-atmosphere gas exchange that illuminate ecological understanding and are useful for land managers and policymakers. We measure how plants coordinate multiple resource limitations – carbon, water, nitrogen and light – and emergent key properties of structure and function. This includes physiological research on stomatal biology, photosynthesis, respiration and tree water relations, and physiological ecology research on how those processes differ across scales and among species.
Currently my students, collaborators and I are studying mechanisms of stomatal regulation of water and carbon exchange, including lab experiments and field measurements. Our goal is to improve understanding of mechanisms regulating tree response to environmental gradients and change, and to understand the origin of diversity related to these responses. We are wrapping up a long term study in Australia to study effects of fire on forest water use in subalpine forests. We recently have recently begun a related study focusing on urban trees in the Los Angeles and Salt Lake City basins and trees in the Copeland Creek catchment.
Water-Related Community Connections: The Australia project involves a collaborative team of local, regional and national water agencies especially in the Australian Capital Territory.
Michelle Goman, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography and Global Studies, SSU
Area of Water Expertise: reconstructing prehistoric environmental change; paleoclimatic change; wetland ecology and paleoecology
Water-Related Courses Taught: Global Environmental Systems (Geog 204); Lab Methods in Physcial Geography (Geog 317); Geomorphology (Geog 360); Global Climate Change; Past, Present and Future (Geog 372; Natural Hazards (Geog 375).
Water-Related Research: I study the causes and impacts of environmental change during the last 10,000 years by working with biological and non-biological materials preserved in lake and wetland sediments. For instance, in the San Francisco Bay my research has focused upon understanding variations in river discharge as caused by climate change. This has direct relevance to how we manage the freshwater supply that feeds the Delta and Bay
Water-Related Community Connections: I am a member of the Baylands Habitat Goals Transition Zone Workgroup
Michael Smith, Assistant Professor, Department of Geology, SSU
Area of Water Expertise: Sediment transport in streams; landscape evolution and basin analysis; analysis of provenance records in stream gravels and ancient conglomerate deposits.
Water-Related Courses Taught: Sedimentary Geology (GEOL 311 & 312); Our Dynamic Earth (introdutory Geology (GEOL 102); Natural Disasters (GEOL 110); Geology of Climate Change (GEOL 302)
Water-Related Research: I seek to expand our understanding of the influence of lithologically-determined durability contrast on sediment transport and evolution. I’m currently working with several SSU undergraduate students on independent research projects in parallel which all seek to better understand how the lithologic composition of sediments influences coarse sediment transport and evolution. Sediment composition has long proven to be a valuable tracer for material fluxes across a variety of process settings in both modern and ancient.
Water-Related Community Connections: Currently working with UC Davis Bodega Marine Reserve and Sonoma Coast State Park to quantify aeolian sediment transport in support of restoration efforts aimed at expanding Snowy Plover nesting habitat.