Water and Biogeochemical Cycles

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Sustaining Life

Water is at the nexus of the energy-environment relationship, and water scarcity involves the inherent trade-offs between the production of food, goods, and services and the maintenance of natural ecosystems.

Flowing throughout the Earth

Water is essential to the health of people and communities, ecosystems, regional and national economies, and the security of nations, supporting personal health, food production, manufacturing, energy generation, recreation, and a spectrum of other socially-valued ecosystem services.

Likewise, the biogeochemical cycles, such as nutrients and carbon, which are circulated through water, terrestrial ecosystems, and the atmosphere are essential to our world's health.

Population growth, development, and environmental changes put increasing stresses on water resources throughout the world. The challenges of droughts, floods, and degraded water quality—which serve to underscore our dependence on a balanced quantity and adequate quality of water—exacerbate population challenges. 

Additionally, changes to our ecosystem place stressors on biogeochemical cycles.

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 Olivia Mroczko, graduate student in agricultural and biological engineering, is evaporating filtered wastewater samples with a nitrogen gas generator in the Natural Resources Engineering Water Quality Laboratory in the Agricultural Engineering Building. She will then analyze the filtered water for pharmaceuticals.
Olivia Mroczko, graduate student in agricultural and biological engineering, is evaporating filtered wastewater samples with a nitrogen gas generator in relation to a project that uses wastewater to detect COVID-19 outbreaks.

Water and Biogeochemical Cycles Research

 

Featured IEE Researchers

Professor, Ecosystem Science and Management
Associate Professor, Agricultural Economics, Sociology and Education

Water and Biogeochemical Cycles News

Featured Stories

Aquatic organisms respond to flooding and drought disturbance in different ways

| psu.edu

Populations of various species of aquatic insects and other invertebrates respond to flooding and waterway drying due to drought in different ways that can be anticipated, according to a new Penn State-led study that employed a novel method to assess the stability of stream ecosystems.

Mentions: Daniel Allen

Davis hoping to leave a legacy of engagement with Graduate Council

| psu.edu

When Ken Davis, professor of professor of atmospheric and climate science, had an opportunity to help lead graduate education at Penn State, the chance was one that he could not let pass by. Davis will be wrapping up his tenure as chair of Penn State’s Graduate Council on May 31, 2023, an appointment that he began in 2019.

Mentions: Kenneth Davis

crashing ocean wave

Water Consortium (in Development)

A new University-wide water initiative has been launched, called the Penn State Water Consortium, involving faculty and staff engaged in research, teaching, and outreach. The Consortium is currently in development. 

Penn State has a long and rich history of engaged, innovative, and impactful water and water-related research. This portfolio of work encompasses the natural, social, and health sciences, engineering, policy and law, communications, the arts, and more.

Learn More about the Water Consortium (in Development)