If you run in any of the same circles as me, biochar is a hot topic of conversation as of late. There is potential for biochar to serve as a solution to issues in soil health, climate change, and the reduction of biomass in waste streams, all while contributing to rural economies and reducing fire risk through forest thinning. In all of these instances, however, biochar must be utilized to have the intended effects. Agricultural application of biochar as a waste treatment and as a soil amendment allows for the reduction of one waste stream to become a net benefit for farms, the climate, and society.
Stormwater runoff has become one of the greatest environmental challenges we face in western Washington, a region with heavy rainfall and widespread urbanization. In parts of the landscape dominated by impervious surfaces, such as roads…
Stormwater runoff, particularly from roadways, is one of the leading sources of water pollution in Puget Sound. Stormwater pollution impacts people and ecosystems in different ways. Many of the things Puget Sound residents hold dear…
This week, CSANR released its annual BIOAg Program request for proposals for new research and extension projects. The RFP can be found here. This competitive grant program is the key mechanism that CSANR has to engage a broad, interdisciplinary spectrum of WSU faculty in projects that further the development, understanding, and use of biologically intensive […]
There have been four progressively rigorous meta-analyses published since 2009 focusing on differences in the nutritional quality and safety of organic versus conventional food. The latest comes out July 15, 2014 in the British Journal of Nutrition (BJN). I was the sole American scientist on the mostly European research team that produced the BJN paper: […]
Problems triggered by the spread of glyphosate-resistant weeds in corn, soybean, and cotton country continue to worsen. An industry source recently projected that 70 million acres are now infested with one or more glyphosate-resistant weed. The presence of glyphosate-resistant weeds forces farmers to add additional herbicides to their control programs, and apply herbicides more often […]
Avoiding pesticide exposure and risks remains the #1 reason most people choose organic food. This is not likely to change until there is convincing data that show only modest differences between the pesticide dietary risks associated with residues in and on organic food, compared to conventionally grown food.
In its December 20, 2013 issue, the journal Science identified cancer immunotherapy as the science breakthrough of the year. An editorial by the journal’s Editor-in-Chief Marcia McNutt explains the basis for the selection. She notes that the war on cancer started 40 years ago and has had great success in treating some cancers, while others […]
A couple of weeks ago Dr. Jeff Ullman, formerly of WSU, gave a provocative seminar on the fate of various constituents of pharmaceuticals and personal care products in the environment. He and his co-researchers have discovered that a wide range of chemicals from these products do not degrade when going through our bodies, animal bodies, […]