Environmental Quality and Waste Management at OSU

EQWM Proposal Topics

Please share with the EQ&WM team the subject area of your proposal, the PIs involved, and whether you are open to additional collaboration. 

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On-farm Mortality Composting of Large Animal Carcasses in Oklahoma

Posted by sharla.lovern@okstate.edu at Dec 04, 2007 12:46 PM
Posted by joshua.payne@okstate.edu at 2007-12-03 14:57

Large animal carcass disposal remains a problem throughout the US. For many livestock producers, carcass disposal options are limited and can be costly. Unfortunately, many producers leave dead carcasses exposed on the field or even drag to ditches or ravines. This unsustainable practice is not only illegal in most states but can also degrade surface and groundwater and result in increased disease transmission, endangering the health of humans, domestic livestock, wildlife and pets. In order for livestock production to remain sustainable, proper on-farm carcass disposal procedures must be taught and implemented on all farming operations regardless of farm size. These procedures must effectively dispose of animal carcasses without negatively affecting the environment while remaining cost effective to the producer. The objective of this project is to compare the efficacy of three bulking agents for composting stocker calf and mature cow carcasses. Compost bins will be constructed and monitored over 180 days. At the conclusion of the study, a field day will be scheduled to assess the compost piles. Preliminary data will be reported and each pile will be examined for any remaining bone fragments.

Principal Investigators: Josh Payne, Biosystems and Ag Engineering, and Brian Pugh, Haskell County Extension Educator

Project Collaborators: Steven Quick, cattle producer and Kevin Fenton, veterinarian.

Interaction of Nonpoint Source Contaminant Loads in Streams with Riparian Ground Water

Posted by sharla.lovern@okstate.edu at Dec 05, 2007 04:15 PM
Posted by garey.fox@okstate.edu at 2007-12-03 13:10
The objective of this project is to document the interaction of surface water contaminants with the hyporheic zone and adjacent riparian floodplain deposits in eastern Oklahoma. Rhodamine WT dye tracer and phosphorus injection tests will be performed in the Baron Fork near Tahlequah, OK and concentrations will be monitored in the stream, hyporheic zone, and adjacent ground water. Discrete time-resolution samples will be obtained from the stream and alluvial ground water during select storm events with expected nonpoint source P loads. This research will have a significant impact on the future management of riparian floodplains and on in-stream modeling strategies for predicting the movement of nonpoint source loads from the land surface to receiving water bodies.

Proposed Project Contributors: Glenn Brown, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, Research/Teaching; Bill Fisher, Natural Resource, Ecology and Management; Garey Fox, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, Research/Teaching; Todd Halihan, Geology, Research/Teaching; Chad Penn, Plant and Soil Sciences, Research/Teaching; Mike Smolen, Research/Extension; Dan Storm, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, Research/Teaching; Open Position for Ecohydrologist in Natural Resource, Ecology, and Management (NREM)

Note that we are open to additional collaboration.

Establishment of biocriteria to assess water quality and linkages between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in cross-timbers habitat

Posted by carmen.greenwood@okstate.edu at Dec 05, 2007 06:07 PM

We intend to make use of the currently established CTER framework to establish baseline biocriteria from cross-timbers aquatic habitats, including small stream habitat, larger streams, and non-flowing ephemeral pools, and bordering riparian areas to subsequently determine the impacts of various land-use practices on water quality and the ecology of the aquatic terrestrial interface.The specific objectives of this study will be:

  1. To characterize invertebrate communities in aquatic habitats unique to cross-timbers habitat (small streams, higher order streams, ephemeral pools, wetlands and streams with intermittent flow) to a level specific enough to identify potential conservation targets.
  2. Characterize aquatic habitats seasonally using GPS and GIS to determine flow rates and establish biotic colonization patterns of aquatic invertebrates and fish communities.
  3. Conduct bioassessment of aquatic habitats in cross-timbers habitat, using well-established protocol (EPA rapid bioassessment technique; procedure 51) and subsequently identify regionally unique bioindicator taxa that will provide water quality feedback for aquatic systems characteristic of cross-timbers habitat. We intend to first establish baseline biocriteria and then to monitor the impacts of the proposed land-use treatments on bioindicator taxa.
  4. Characterize the energy flow patterns through aquatic habitats representative of the cross-timbers ecosystem using SIA. We intend to establish energy flow patterns through the various natural states of aquatic habitat found in cross-timbers and evaluate how land-use practices, characteristic of the region, impact these systems. Effect of controlled burning with different riparian buffer intervals and grazing interaction is one of the planned treatments. Shifts in energy flow patterns will also be correlated to shifts in aquatic community structure. Team members Carmen Greenwood, Entomology and plant pathology;Joe Bidwell, Zoology; Andy Dzialowski, Zoology; Dwayne Elmore, Natural Resources Ecology and Management; Bill Fisher, Natural Resources Ecology and Management; Sam Fuhlendorf, Natural Resources Ecology and Management; Tom Royer, Entomology and plant pathology (IPM coordinator)

PPM Plus Enhancements: 1) Incorporating Economics and 2) Validating the Pasture Forage Growth and Cattle Grazing Routines

Posted by dan.storm@okstate.edu at Dec 12, 2007 11:43 AM

Collaborators to date:

Dan Storm, Biosystems Engineering Art Stoecker, Agricultural Economics

Please let me know if you would like to be involved. We still need a number of other disciplines.

Thanks, Dan

Oklahoma Water Law Handbook

Posted by michael.smolen@okstate.edu at Dec 14, 2007 04:14 PM
Shannon Ferrell and Damian Adams, with support from Mike Smolen, Aaron Mittelstet, Larry Sanders

a) Conduct an exhaustive literature review of all published information (appearing either in academic publications or published directly by an Oklahoma state agency) regarding Oklahoma water law, with emphasis on use and acquisition issues.
b) Compile all relevant Oklahoma statutes, regulations, and case law precedents on issues of Oklahoma water use and acquisition.
c) Synthesize a restatement of current Oklahoma water law doctrine.
d) Condense restatement into stakeholder-accessible format.
e) Prepare drafts of Fact Sheet / Current Report, Circular, and Presentation.
f) Provide drafts to small group of stakeholders and peers for review, evaluation, and suggested revisions.
g) Evaluate feedback from draft materials and revise as appropriate.
h) Prepare final versions of materials.
i) Distribute materials via PODS and Water Website

Biochar from Poultry Litter as a Soil Amendment to Protect Water Quality

Posted by sharla.lovern@okstate.edu at Dec 28, 2007 05:05 PM
Project Leaders: Dr. Jackie L. Schroder and Dr. Hailin Zhang

Project Contributors: Dr. Jackie L. Schroder, Dr. Hailin Zhang, Dr. Chad Penn, and Dr. Mark Wilkins

Evaluating Arsenic Exposure and Risk to Private Domestic Water Well Users in Oklahoma

Posted by sharla.lovern@okstate.edu at Dec 28, 2007 05:05 PM
Project Leaders: Dr. Jackie L. Schroder, Dr. Ladonna McCowan, and Dr. Mike Kizer

Project Contributors: Dr. Jackie L. Schroder, Dr. Ladonna McCowan, Dr. Mike Kizer, and Dr. Michael Smolen

OSU Stormwater Initiative: Water Quality Educational Product Template Development for Oklahoma Phase II Communities

Posted by sharla.lovern@okstate.edu at Dec 28, 2007 05:18 PM
The Clean Water Act Stormwater Phase II regulations require 45 Oklahoma urbanized areas and small municipalities to obtain a permit for the discharge of stormwater (see attached map). Astormwater management program must be implemented to obtain a permit. Phase II regulations require the permittees to develop, implement and enforce a storm water management program to reduce the discharge of pollutants to the maximum extent practicable, to protect water quality, and to satisfy the appropriate water quality requirements of the Clean Water Act. There are six minimum control measures that must be included in the storm water management program; Public Education and Outreach, Public Participation/Involvement, Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination, Construction Site Runoff Control, Post-Construction Runoff Control, and Pollution Prevention/Good Housekeeping.

The stormwater managers in many Oklahoma towns typically do not have significant experience and expertise in public education. We believe their efforts to meet Phase II regulations, and in particular the public education and public involvement components, can benefit from partnership with OSU Extension.

Innovative educational efforts have been developed by Extension programs in states like South Carolina, North Carolina, Texas, Maine, and Washington. We can acquire some of these existing educational resources, evaluate and modify them for Oklahoma needs and Oklahoma audiences, and make them available to the Phase II communities. We can also develop other resources that are deemed important as determined by meetings with Phase II community staffs, as we look to specific target audiences and focus on priority messages.

As we develop these educational materials, we plan to host needs-assessment and training planning meetings with key stormwater managers around the state. We also have scheduled inservice educational programs for county extension personnel, in the interest of furthering knowledge of the stormwater regulations and needs, and providing information that can enhance Extension Educators’ interaction with city and county officials and staffs.

Goal (1): Consortium development.
Goal (2): Develop knowledgeable Extension personnel & template materials
Goal (3): Networking, collaboration and meeting facilitation
Goal (4): Share, maintain and improve

Project Contributors:
Michael Smolen, BAE, Extension
Shelly Sitton, AgComm, Teaching
Garvin Quinn, DirAgCommSvc, Extension and Research
Karen Milford, ODEQ, Stormwater Permitting
Hailin Zhang, PaSS, Extension
Dan Storm, BAE, Research and Teaching
Glenn Brown, BAE, Research and Teaching
LaDonna McCowan, BAE, Extension
Unidentified professor in “Water Resources and Low Impact Development”, BAE, Research and Teaching
David Adams, OCES Muskogee Cty, Extension
Sharla Lovern, BAE, Extension

Open to additional collaboration
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