Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences



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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Noah Fierer and Hyungu Kang

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Noah Fierer and Hyungu Kang

Analytical & Environmental Chemistry Division and Atmospheric Chemistry Program Seminar

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

Diversity of bioaerosols in indoor and outdoor air across the U.S.

by Noah Fierer - Associate Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Fellow of CIRES, University of Colorado Boulder

Every time we breathe we are inhaling thousands of bacterial cells, fungal cells, and pollen grains. Although most of these microbes are innocuous, it is well-established that some airborne bacteria, fungi, and pollen can have important effects on human health. However, we have a limited understanding of how these bioaerosols vary across different geographic regions or the factors that structure their biogeographical patterns. We conducted a citizen science project that involved collecting dust samples from inside and outside ~1,500 households located across the U.S. to understand the continental-scale distributions of bacteria and fungi in indoor and outdoor air. We used high-throughput DNA sequencing to assess the diversity and sources of these bioaerosols, yielding our first insight into the continental-scale distributions of bioaerosols and how they are influenced by climate, land-use, home occupants, and home design.

Size-Dependent Molecular-Level Characterization of Secondary Organic Aerosol from NO3 Initiated Δ-carene Oxidation using Nanospray Desorption Electrospray Ionization High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry

by Hyungu Kang - Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

We have collected size-separated Δ-carene oxidation aerosol samples using a Micro-orifice Uniform Deposit Impactor (MOUDI) by injecting Δ-carene into a dark flow-through chamber under low RH conditions (< 30%) with O3 and NO2 so the dominant reaction pathway would be with NO3 to form highly oxidized products.

The samples were analysed with a Nanospray Desorption Electrospray Ionization (nano-DESI) high-resolution mass spectrometer in both the positive and negative modes to reveal that the faster growing, and thus larger diameter, branch had a higher oxygen-to-carbon (O:C) ratio when compared with the lower branch, suggesting that the faster growing branch is more oxidized. Furthermore, the most intense peaks from the two branches were compositionally different, but a significant proportion of the formulas identified had N:C ratios of ~0.1, which suggests that organic nitrates are a large component of the aerosol products.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-11-02
 
 
 
CIRES Special Seminar: Patricia Corcoran

CIRES Special Seminar: Patricia Corcoran

Hidden Microplastics in the Great Lakes of North America: An invisible threat

by Dr. Patricia Corcoran - Western University, Canada

Abstract: Numerous manifestations of human interactions with Earth’s natural systems have the potential to threaten ecosystems and the organisms that inhabit them, but none may be as globally persistent as plastic debris. Plastic waste has been identified in all oceans, and along shorelines on every continent, but only recently has plastics pollution been reported from lake and river systems. Our research group focuses on the characteristics, accumulation, distribution and degradation of plastic particles in the Great Lakes of North America. More specifically, shoreline investigations along Lakes Huron, St. Clair, Erie and Ontario, combined with studies of lake bottom sediments from Lakes Ontario and Erie, indicate that much of the plastic debris is accumulating in hidden locations, such as buried sediment and organic-rich strandlines. In part, these plastic items are “invisible” because of their small size (generally

Bio: Dr. Patricia Corcoran is an Associate Professor in the Department of Earth Sciences, and the Director of the Centre for Environment and Sustainability at Western University, Canada. Her research focuses on natural and anthropogenic sedimentary deposits in order to gain an understanding of Earth's changing surface and atmospheric processes through time. One significant element of her research concerns the distribution, accumulation and degradation of plastic debris in shoreline and lake bottom sediments of the Great Lakes, for which she receives funding from the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. Dr. Corcoran and her research group are investigating the potential for this plastic debris to become part of the future rock record, thereby representing a symbol of humankind's global effect on Earth's environment. Dr. Corcoran’s plastics research has resulted in extensive international coverage, including features in National Geographic Magazine, Science Magazine, Science et Vie, the New York Times and CBC’s The National.

Dr. Corcoran's visit is hosted by CIRES Fellow Kristy Tiampo (CU Boulder Department of Geological Sciences and Director of the CIRES Earth Science and Observation Center).

location

CIRES Auditorium
2015-11-05
 
Reading the IPCC Report: John O’Loughlin

Reading the IPCC Report: John O’Loughlin

Human Security by John O’Loughlin

IPCC WG III Mitigation

ATOC/CIRES Seminar Series

Ever wonder what the IPCC report says? Attend the ATOC/CIRES Seminar Series Reading the IPCC Report and hear experts in the IPCC chapter areas explain how climate change may impact us, and how it might be mitigated.

location

CIRES Auditorium
2015-11-05
 
Distinguished Lecture Series: Dr. Barbara Finlayson-Pitts

Distinguished Lecture Series: Dr. Barbara Finlayson-Pitts

Particle Formation from Sulfur Compounds in a Coastal Urban Area: Now and Then 

Abstract: While some airborne particles arise from direct emissions, under many circumstances they are formed in air from reactions of gas phase precursors.  A well-known example is the formation of sulfuric acid and sulfate particles from the oxidation of SO2 emitted during combustion of sulfur-containing fossil fuels. The oxidation of organosulfur compounds, which have a variety of natural and anthropogenic sources, is another way to form SO2 and sulfate particles.  However, this chemistry also forms methanesulfonic acid (MSA), which we have shown also forms particles in the presence of amines, with water vapor playing a key role.   In a coastal urban area such as the South Coast Air Basin (SoCAB) of southern California, there are both fossil fuel sources of SO2 and many different sources of organosulfur compounds, both of which contribute to particle formation in air.  An integrated approach of laboratory experiments, quantum chemical theory, field measurements and airshed modeling is shown to provide useful insights into the potential relative contributions of these processes to particle formation in the SoCAB under current conditions and in a future scenario with sulfur removed from fossil fuels. The results may be particularly relevant to understanding the contributions of some agricultural activities to airborne particles.

Bio: Barbara Finlayson-Pitts is Professor of Chemistry at the University of California, Irvine, UCI Distinguished Professor and Director of AirUCI.  She did her undergraduate degree at Trent University in Canada, and her M.S. and Ph.D. at U.C. Riverside.  She joined the faculty in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Cal State Fullerton in 1974, and in 1994 moved to UC Irvine.  Her research focuses on experimental studies of reactions that occur in the atmosphere, particularly those that form and grow particles and those that occur on surfaces.  Professor Finlayson-Pitts is author or coauthor of more than 180 scientific publications and two books on atmospheric chemistry.  She has mentored many students from undergraduates to graduate students, as well as postdoctoral fellows who have gone on to pursue a wide variety of careers.  Professor Finlayson-Pitts' research and teaching has been recognized by a number of awards, including the 2004 American Chemistry Society Award for Creative Advances in Environmental Science & Technology, election as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Geophysical Union and the Royal Society of Chemistry, the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences.  She received the Coalition for Clean Air Carl Moyer Award for Scientific Leadership and Technical Excellence and the Haagen-Smit Clean Air Award from the California Air Resources Board.

date

Friday, November 6, 2015
4:00pm

location

CIRES Auditorium

resources

Event Type

DLS

Amenities

Refreshments provided

2015-11-06
 
 
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CMC Meeting Nov. 9, 2015

CMC Meeting Nov. 9, 2015

CMC Meeting Nov. 9th, 2015

The Egg & I Restaurant.

 

In attendance:  Christina Holt, Allen Pope, Amanda Morton, Robin Strelow, Lucia Harrop, Mimi Hughes, Craig Hartsough, Michelle Cash, Carrie Morrill, Kathy Lantz, Anne Perring, Rick Tisinai, Chris Clack.

 

(There was a delay getting into the room due to an E&I scheduling mixup)

 

Called to order at 12:21pm

 

• Announcements - Director’s Town Hall meeting at DSRC on Nov. 16th

 

Plans for future meetings: where?

 

OPA questions of timing of the dates of the meetings and CMC privacy from guests discussed between Chris, Anne, and Lucia.

 

Vote taken: The CMC will change to go to The Taj for big meetings!

 

Christina: are brown bags OK? and the group said yes. Robin asked if the money currently available would cover the costs of food? It seems that it could be workable. Lucia noted that we got a late notice on the budget for the year, so we may run over. Max is $150 but more normally $120. We could ask for RSVP for the pizza meetings. Lucia also noted that the schedule is set to accommodate CMC work, not the CIRES budget concerns. We could also adjust by calling for brown bag meetings, our own cookies, etc.

 

A reminder that it is difficult for CMC members and guests to get to the Skaggs building. Allen noted that we could use the University in a pinch.

 

Alternative rooms at the University were discussed, moving the meeting day to other days, etc, were brought up by Robin. No definitive places or days were decided upon at this time.

 

A CMC calendar of events would be useful (???) Christina will “host” the meeting as an event for the group via Google Calendar (?)

 

Days of the week were discussed, where Wednesdays might be good. Lucia noted that Monday lunches were traditionally good for outside guests.

 

OPA committee - more people needed!

 

Robin declined since she has been on the committee for 2 years.

 

Michelle will do it. Mimi will do it and Kathy will be a backup CMC member.

 

Rick asked to have the job described by Chris. Chris did that!

 

Anne noted that the outside people would be notified by the OPA web announcement and a later general announcement.

 

LUNCH

 

Back at it at 1:09pm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GSD over-representation: Christina put it out to the group to see if it is OK for GSD to have 3 reps for only 50 CIRES members. Chris said he would be leaving later in 2016, and Allen said it doesn’t seem to impinge upon the other Labs. Lucia: we can have the new Membership Chair to review the balance between Labs. Christina asked if the current situation would impact voting and Anne and others felt it would not.

 

Lucia noted that she could ask Paula Robinson about the current, updated CIRES members numbers. Christina described that it would be better to focus on under-representation rather than a bit of over representation.

 

CIRES PIs in PSD

Anne noted that CSD has had a bit of a history with this where a scientist tried to get outside funding, with the provision that the person hired could not use NOAA facilities or equipment.

Chris also described an awkward provision concerning where the person would “sit,” that is, at the University or in the NOAA building. Mimi said she has had 1/2 time NOAA/CIRES setup at PSD and splits her time between the two places. Kathy described the functionality problems between Fed and the University using a “sponsorship link” to one of the Fellows.

 

Lucia a lot of “unspoken issues” where Waleed may have been negotiating concerns.

 

Kathy suggested a committee within the Fellows to determine whose proposal would be interpreted.

 

Anne mentioned that a Fed could sponsor a CIRES proposal.

 

Mini said that the PSD process is not finished, and Lucia described that Waleed has been trying to work the opportunities for CIRES people in-between science decisions at NOAA versus the University.

 

Kathy described a way to have the committee justify territory.

 

Christina asked for the CMC to consider keeping tabs on this. Rick asked for the CMC to be informed about it. Chris and Lucia discussed the difference between pushing Waleed and Kristen for an outcome versus waiting for the outcome with PSD.

 

Kathy and Chris described that CMC should be active even with a current individual who has an issue, that’s our job!

 

Kathy described that going for funding from DOE via NOAA was much more cumbersome that going via CIRES.

 

Amanda asked who are the Rendezvous members, and Rick will let her know who is on the committee.

 

Kathy bought up the question Leave Policy from a member. Loss of vacation time at the end of the year? The CIRES scientist travels a lot in the field and cannot use the time! Lucia: CIRES time can be donated.

 

Lucia said that there is a 352 hour cap for Leave which is not under CIRES control, it is a Colorado State rule. Hours cannot be bought back or sold.

 

New Business

 

Chris described the GSD Lab Review and had lunch with the review panel. He brought up the paper publishing conundrum and the promotion track. The preliminary judgment from the Panel is that GSD should provide more publishing opportunities for CIRES members.

 

 

See the update slide on future meeting places below:

[Text Box: Meeting Adjourned 1:54pm]

 

date

Monday, November 9, 2015
12:00pm
2015-11-09
 
Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Nolan Kane

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Nolan Kane

Analytical & Environmental Chemistry Division and Atmospheric Chemistry Program Seminar

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

The Genetics of Terpenoid Production in Cannabis

by Nolan Kane - Associate Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado Boulder

The Cannabaceae family produces an astonishing diversity of cannabinoids and related terpenes, which are thought to collectively provide the complex flavor and aroma of hops, as well as the psychoactive and medical effects of Cannabis. New research provides important insights into the genetic variation underlying this phytochemical diversity, and sheds light on approaches that can be used to improve breeding efforts to up- or down-regulate the production of these compounds.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-11-09
 
 
Cryospheric and Polar Processes Seminar: Jeff Thompson

Cryospheric and Polar Processes Seminar: Jeff Thompson

Perspective from the periphery: Linking vegetation phenology and cryospheric change in Greenland

By Dr. Jeff Thompson - NSIDC/CIRES Visiting Fellow, University of Colorado Boulder

In recent years, studies have reported increased greening across the Arctic in response to climatic warming. Greening has been linked to a shortening of the snow-covered period and reductions in sea ice. While these relationships have been observed for the broader pan-Artic region, they have not always held for Greenland. In this talk I use a fifteen-year time-series of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index obtained by MODIS to explore changes in the phenology of vegetation on Greenland's periphery and links to other cryospheric systems.

location

RL-2 (on East Campus) room 155

contact

2015-11-11
 
Reading the IPCC Report: Michele Betsill

Reading the IPCC Report: Michele Betsill

National and Sub-national Policies and Institutions by Michele Betsill

IPCC WG III Mitigation

ATOC/CIRES Seminar Series

Ever wonder what the IPCC report says? Attend the ATOC/CIRES Seminar Series Reading the IPCC Report and hear experts in the IPCC chapter areas explain how climate change may impact us, and how it might be mitigated.

location

CIRES Auditorium

contact

2015-11-12
 
 
 
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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Jennifer Berry and Kevin Jansen

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Jennifer Berry and Kevin Jansen

Analytical & Environmental Chemistry Division and Atmospheric Chemistry Program Seminar

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

Light-absorbing impurities and spectral albedo of the Juneau Icefield

By Jennifer Lynne Berry - Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Colorado Boulder

Light absorption by ice is extremely low in the visible and near ultraviolet wavelengths, so small concentrations of light-absorbing impurities can have a large effect on snow and ice albedo. Snow samples containing light-absorbing impurities were collected alongside measurements of spectral albedo on the Juneau Icefield in Alaska to investigate this effect. An Integrating Sphere/Integrating Sandwich Spectrophotometer (ISSW) was constructed to infer black carbon and non-black carbon light-absorbing particle concentrations in snow. Although calibration of the ISSW is incomplete, Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis and SEM-EDX images of particles from meltwater show a wide range of particle sizes and distribution across the icefield.

Chemical and Physical Alterations of Acid-Treated Aluminosilicate Clay Minerals and Impacts on Heterogeneous Ice Nucleation

By Kevin Jansen - Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Colorado Boulder

Mineral dust aerosol is a major contributor to global ice nucleation, although atmospheric processing of mineral dust by sulfuric and nitric acids has been found to alter its ice nucleation ability. Samples of kaolinite and montmorillonite, two aluminosilicate clay minerals, were treated with aqueous sulfuric and nitric acid to simulate atmospheric processing. The samples were studied X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, and inductively coupled plasma–atomic emission spectroscopy were used to study the structural changes due to acid treatment, which were correlated to observations found in ice nucleation experiments. On the basis of lattice spacing arguments, the observed reduction in ice nucleation activity of acid-treated minerals were correlated to physical and chemical alterations to the mineral structure and the formation aqueous salts on the mineral surface.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-11-16
 
 
Cryospheric and Polar Processes Seminar: Drew Slater

Cryospheric and Polar Processes Seminar: Drew Slater

Will the Terrestrial Arctic turn to Mush?

By Dr. Drew Slater  - NSIDC/CIRES, University of Colorado Boulder

Projections regarding the future of permafrost in the terrestrial Arctic have been many and varied, with some debate having occurred in the literature. How can we interpret various results, what can we learn about our models and how does that inform us about future directions? These matters will be investigated using results from the CMIP5 models (as used in the IPCC reports) and provide us with insights regarding model and data needs.

location

RL-2 (on East Campus) room 155
2015-11-18
 
Colorado’s Floods and Fires

Colorado’s Floods and Fires

Risk Mitigation and Disaster Recovery Through a Policy Lens

By Deserai Anderson Crow, Center for Science and Technology Policy Research and ENVS

location

Sustainability, Energy and Environment Complex (SEEC), S101 and Auditorium

Event Type

CSTPR

Amenities

Refreshments provided

2015-11-18
 
CGA Student Speaker Series

CGA Student Speaker Series

Aleya Kaushik "Investigating climate in the atmospheric surface layer using stable water isotopes"

The moisture balance of the continental boundary layer plays an important role in regulating the exchange of water and energy between the land surface and atmosphere. The surface layer moisture balance is controlled by a number of factors including precipitation, infiltration, evaporation and transpiration. Measurements of stable isotope ratios in water can be exploited to better understand the mechanisms controlling atmosphere-land surface water fluxes. This talk will focus on the use of stable water isotopes as a tool to study climate and variability in the water cycle in the Front Range. I will present three years of in situ tower-based measurements of stable isotope ratios of water (δD and δ18O) in vapor, precipitation, vegetation and soil from the Boulder Atmospheric Observatory, a semi-arid 300 meter tall-tower site in Erie, Colorado. Co-located meteorological and disdrometer measurements at the surface and 300m allow us to explore key aspects of continental moisture cycling in a semi-arid environment such as the important contribution of sub-surface vapor diffusion to the surface water vapor budget and its implications for partitioning in dry ecosystems, and the role of rain evaporation during precipitation events on inter-event and seasonal time scales.

Lunch will be provided.

location

Duane Physics (Gamow Tower 11th Floor Commons)

Event Type

CGA

Amenities

Lunch provided

2015-11-18
 
Reading the IPCC Report: Mary Hayden

Reading the IPCC Report: Mary Hayden

Human Health by Mary Hayden

IPCC WG III Mitigation

ATOC/CIRES Seminar Series

Ever wonder what the IPCC report says? Attend the ATOC/CIRES Seminar Series Reading the IPCC Report and hear experts in the IPCC chapter areas explain how climate change may impact us, and how it might be mitigated.

location

CIRES Auditorium
2015-11-19
 
 
 
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Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Eve-Lyn Hinckley

Analytical Chemistry Seminar: Eve-Lyn Hinckley

Analytical & Environmental Chemistry Division and Atmospheric Chemistry Program Seminar

Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program

Immediate fates of the world’s oldest pesticide in California’s most lucrative crop

By Eve-Lyn S. Hinckley - Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies, Fellow of the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research University of Colorado Boulder

Elemental sulfur (S0) has been used as an effective pesticide in agricultural systems since ancient Egyptian civilization. Today, in California’s winegrowing regions, applications of S0 dust are used as a preventative against powdery mildew infestation. Throughout the growing season, average applications are 150 kg S ha-1 yr1, and over Napa Valley vineyards alone, the applications total 810 Mg S0. Based on decades of research in northeastern U.S. forests that documented devastating ecosystem consequences of inadvertent reactive S and nitrogen deposition, I was inspired to understand how intensive, widespread, purposeful additions of S0 affect local-to-regional scale soil and water quality in agricultural systems. In Napa Valley vineyards, I have explored (1) What are the immediate fates of S0 locally in soils? and (2) What are the unintended consequences of its intensive, widespread use for downgradient ecosystems? In this talk, I will show the connection between hydrologic controls and the fate of S0 in California vineyards, and discuss how the pattern and consequences of continued applications might change under current drought conditions in the State. Ultimately, decisions about S pesticide management and water use in California’s winegrowing regions have implications for the sustainability of this industry, as well as the function of surrounding terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

location

CIRES Fellows Room, Ekeley S274
2015-11-30