Hosted by the Environmental Studies Program, the OU observance will focus on local and global environmental concerns, including water and social justice.
Events include a symposium on sustainability and a distinguished speaker series on human-water interactions and the history of water development in Oklahoma as recorded in the congressional archives.
“Our aim is to bring the OU campus, the greater Oklahoma community, and leading professionals and experts in the sciences, social sciences and humanities together to discuss locally and globally timely and important environmental issues,” said Dave Hambright, OU’s program director of Environmental Studies.
“We hope to heighten awareness as much as possible among these diverse groups while providing essential information and highlighting OU’s crucial role in this important endeavor, OU’s Earth Month.”
The events are sponsored by members of the OU Environmental Portfolio, which includes the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Atmospheric and Geographic Sciences, and Gallogly College of Engineering.
Other units involved in the observance include the School of Civil Engineering and Environmental Science, Department of Geography and Environmental Sustainability, Environmental Studies Program, Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History, OU Humanities Forum, OU Center for Social Justice, OU Environmental Concerns Committee, Carl Albert Congressional and Research Center, WaTER Center, and Center for Restoration of Ecological Watersheds, as well as one of OU’s primary scientific vendors, VWR.
A schedule of primary events follows (other events can be found at environmentalstudies.ou.edu):
Tuesday, March 29
Water and Social Justice – Flint, Oklahoma, and Beyond, 7–9 p.m., Regents and Associates Rooms, Oklahoma Memorial Union, 900 Asp Ave.
An expert panel hosted by the OU Center for Social Justice considers how social justice interacts with law, policy, economics and engineering in questions of access to a safe water supply.
Wednesday, April 6
Environmental Studies Distinguished Speaker Series: Human-Water Interactions, featuring Hans Paerl, University of North Carolina
Paerl will deliver two lectures. The first, “Controlling a Global Proliferation of Toxic Cyanobacterial Blooms: The Case for Dual Nutrient (N & P) Input Reduction Strategies,” will be presented in 123 George Lynn Cross Hall, 770 Van Vleet Oval. The second, “Harmful Cyanobacterial Bloom Dynamics in a World Experiencing Anthropogenic and Climatically Induced Change,” is set for 7 p.m. in the Robert S. Kerr Auditorium of the Sam Noble Museum, 2401 Chautauqua Ave.
Environmental Studies Distinguished Speaker Series: Human-Water Interactions, featuring Stephanie Hampton, Washington State University
Hampton will deliver two lectures. The first, “Lake Baikal: The Pearl of Siberia,” will be presented at 3 p.m. in 123 George Lynn Cross Hall. The second, “Rapid Warming of Lakes Worldwide,” is set for 7 p.m. in the Robert S. Kerr Auditorium of the Sam Noble Museum.
Environmental Studies Distinguished Speaker Series: Human-Water Interactions, featuring Bryan Brooks, Baylor University
Brooks will discuss “Are Harmful Algal Blooms Becoming the Greatest Inland Water Quality Threat to Public Health and Aquatic Ecosystems?” at 3 p.m. in 123 George Lynn Cross Hall. He will present a second lecture titled “Emerging Challenges for Urban Waters: Lessons Learned From Fish on Prozac” at 7 p.m. in the Robert S. Kerr Auditorium at the Sam Noble Museum.
OU Environmental Concerns Committee: Sustainability Symposium, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., National Weather Center, 120 David L. Boren Blvd.
Academic and professional experts will address some of Oklahoma’s most pressing environmental concerns through a daylong series of lectures and panel discussions. Panel topics will include Energy and Water in Oklahoma: Policy, Practices, and Sustainability; Sustainability Issues in Water Exploitation and Reclamation; the Humanities and Sustainability; and Sustainability Efforts at the University of Oklahoma.
Environmental Studies Distinguished Speaker Series: Human-Water Interactions, featuring Matthew Chumchal, Texas Christian University
Chumchal will deliver two lectures, the first titled “An Environmental Problem Hidden in Plain Sight: Small Man-Made Ponds, Emergent Insects and Mercury Contamination of Biota in the Great Plains,” at 3 p.m. in 123 George Lynn Cross Hall. The second, “Mercury Contamination in the South Central, US: Patterns, Causes, and Consequences,” is set for 7 p.m. in Robert S. Kerr Auditorium, Sam Noble Museum.
Environmental Studies Distinguished Speaker Series: Human-Water Interactions, featuring Alan Wilson, Auburn University
Wilson will present two lectures, “Are Harmful Algal Blooms a Threat to U.S, Freshwater Lakes?” and “Consequences of Nutrient Enrichment and Herbivore Adaption for Phytoplankton in Lakes.” The lectures will be shown at 3 and 4:30 p.m., respectively, both in 123 George Lynn Cross Hall.
WATER: Congressional Representation to Protect Precious Resources, March 29 through May 4, Oklahoma Memorial Union, Sam Noble Museum and National Weather Center (exhibit open at these venues during all panel, lecture and symposium events)
This traveling exhibit tells the stories of many of Oklahoma’s dams, reservoirs and rivers through the lens of legislation and the members of Congress who worked to protect our state’s water in the past and today.
For more information, visit environmentalstudies.ou.edu.