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Predicting Nature Like the Weather: Virginia Tech Researchers Receive LTREB Grant

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Category: research Video duration: Predicting Nature Like the Weather: Virginia Tech Researchers Receive LTREB Grant
A team of Virginia Tech researchers has secured a grant from the National Science Foundation to support their project, which focuses on monitoring two water reservoirs in Roanoke, Virginia. This initiative aims to provide valuable insights into the ecological dynamics and water quality of these crucial freshwater resources.
So I arrived at Virginia Tech in 2013 to start my faculty position and entered into a partnership with the Western Virginia Water Authority through existing collaborations at Virginia Tech from the lab of Dr. John Little in civil engineering. And he invited me to participate in this program. And I invited Dr. Madeline Schreiber from Geoscience. So we really, I think, brought the monitoring program to a new level in terms of biological, chemical, and physical monitoring of the water quality. This is a drinking water reservoir for the city of Roanokes and the surrounding region. And we work really closely with the Western Virginia Water Authority to collect data, share data, help them interpret how the water quality is changing, which they then use to guide drinking water decisions. We're really excited about this new National Science Foundation grant, which is a monitor research and environmental biology monitoring grant. This is funding to support the monitoring program which again started in 2013 and now will continue for the next decade with the support for students for supporting the chemical analyses and the sensors that are deployed in the reservoir to keep them collecting data on the minute resolution for the next decade. What I'm excited for is how we're going to be using these data to drive forecasts for one to 35 days ahead and up to the next year of how the water column and how the water chemistry is changing both from the carbon nitrogen, phosphorus but also the algae in the reservoir to the ice of the reservoir. So we can make automated forecasts to predict and help guide the management into the future. Because the forecasting project Killing Ker and I Coa that the goal of that is to be able to predict Netra like can predict output blooms, manage water supplies better. Can we predict carbon of tick by forest that help manage natural climate solutions for climate mitigation? Can we predict when ticks are going to be at their peak so we can avoid or help Covent potential tick by diseases? All these things are locked together. This idea of ecological forecasting, near term actionable forecasts of all things across nature that humans do not.