Grand Challenges Research Projects
Human Impact on Forests and Lakes
Kenneth Johnson (COLA) and Mark Ducey (COLSA) have collaborated to examine how demographic data can be combined with traditional remote sensing data to inform researches about how human movements and development impact natural resources. For example, the adjacent figure using satellite imagery shows forested areas in green and urban areas in red. However, canopy cover made it hard to detect other areas of development (black), potentially affecting models of resources use near the watershed. However, demographic information was used to reveal these hidden areas of development (black) and that can be used to improve the quality of forestry models that utilize satellite imagery.
Forests in Flux: https://carsey.unh.edu/publication/forest-flux
A problem with satellite analysis: You can’t see cows from space: http://www.nashuatelegraph.com/news/1066225-469/a-problem-with-satellite-analysis-you-cant.html
Throughout the Northeast, lakes are popular recreation and second-home destinations — but that popularity can take a toll on the water quality that attracts visitors to begin with. With a three-year, $1.47 million grant from NASA, an interdisciplinary team of researchers that includes UNH faculty members Mark Ducey, Kenneth Johnson and Michael Palace (COLSA) examines how lake water quality in the Northeast’s temperate forests changed over the past three decades, what factors have influenced these changes and how such patterns might continue in a warmer, wetter and more crowded future.
Defining the Anthropocene
Collaborative work by Meghan Howey (COLA), Franklin Sullivan (EOS) and Michael Palace (EOS) at UNH. This figure shows the cache pit locations, the archeological remains of hunter-gather societies, can be detected from the analysis of Lidar data. This team has also been carbon dating material from similar remains in the Great Bay area to determine resource abundance and unitization during 1200 AD prior to European Contact in North America. One resource the team is tracking is the use of cod by these ancient societies. The researchers collaborate to inform other scientists and policy makers about the cod population in the past.
Molly Dorsey (COLA) has been working collaboratively with HHS faculty member Rosemary Caron, with whom she organized the Sidore series “Your Liberty or Your Health”. They have an activity book contracted with Nova Scientific. One of the chapters focuses on the Spanish influenza epidemic (see image). These scholars have examined the events of past outbreaks to inform how to manage future pandemics, as well as addressing issues of public interest vs. personal liberty.