The Bear Brook Watershed research program is one reason UMaine is considered a national leader in long-term biogeochemical research and monitoring taking place on glaciers and in lakes, streams, wetlands and forests.
More than 200 scientists from around the world will see some of these research projects firsthand when UMaine hosts the BIOGEOMON Conference, a gathering of international scientists, students and researchers who study how biogeochemical research, including monitoring, modeling and experiments, support our understanding of how chemical and physical climate change influences the environment on our planet. The conference, July 15–20, will be held in Northport, Maine.
BIOGEOMON’s emphasis is on biogeochemistry as an evolving and integrated discipline, including research at the watershed, ecosystem, landscape and global scales. A major emphasis of research throughout the history of BIOGEOMON has been on the effects of atmospheric deposition on ecosystem function and water quality. In the U.S., concerns for these effects were an important consideration in the reauthorization of the Clean Air Act in 1990. It is these long-term research and monitoring programs that we rely on to determine the benefits of policy actions on environmental quality.
The conference will focus on biogeochemical change through time — from ice cores to gauged watersheds. It will provide a forum for the dissemination and discussion of recent research findings, explore future directions for biogeochemical research and foster interdisciplinary collaboration.
The 2012 conference is organized by UMaine in concert with Villanova University and the Czech Geological Survey. UMaine Professor of Soil Science Ivan Fernandez and Professor Emeritus of Earth Sciences Stephen Norton are leading the conference planning effort and are part of the international planning committee. They and other UMaine faculty members and graduate students will present scientific papers in various sessions and lead fieldtrips to critical research locales and natural sites, such as Bear Brook Watershed.