ISGS Fall 2014 Seminar Series

ISGS Seminar Series: Human viruses as tracers of recent groundwater and indicators of human impacts on groundwater systems

Monday, August 25, 2014 - 11:00am

Room 439, Natural Resources Building

Presented by: Ken Bradbury, Wisconsin Geological Survey

Please note the room number is 439 while the former meeting room is under renovation.

The finding of human viruses in deep groundwater in Wisconsin is causing hydrogeologists to rethink long-held ideas and conceptual models for groundwater movement and groundwater protection in southern Wisconsin.  Over the past ten years our research group has repeatedly detected human enteric viruses in water produced from deep (over 800 ft) bedrock water-supply wells.  Some of these viruses are infectious and could cause disease if the water were not treated before use.  The likely source of the viruses is leakage from urban sewers.  These virus detections have been surprising because human enteric viruses were previously thought to have relatively short (1-2 yr) viable lifetimes in groundwater environments and the predicted travel times from near-surface sources to the wells were tens to hundreds of years.  Wells of this depth were generally assumed to be well-protected from contamination from near-surface sources.

How and why do viruses turn up in the wells?  In evaluating potential virus pathways and transport mechanisms we have become convinced that the viruses originate from a widespread, distributed source, probably sanitary sewers,  related to the entire urbanized area rather than to one or more discrete point sources.  Several lines of evidence support this concept.  These findings are potentially very significant for several reasons. 

About speaker:  Dr. Bradbury serves as Assistant Director for Science at the Wisconsin Survey, and Program Leader for water and environmental programs. Current research interests include virus transport in groundwater, groundwater flow in fractured media, aquitard hydrogeology, groundwater recharge processes, wellhead protection, regional groundwater simulation, and the hydrogeology of glacial deposits.  Ken is the author of numerous scientific papers and reports, is a Fellow in the GSA, has chaired the National Research Council Committee on Water Resources Research for the USGS.  

Presentation: PowerPoint slides (pdf)


ISGS Seminar Series: NO SEMINAR (Labor Day)

Monday, September 1, 2014 (All day)

ISGS Seminar Series: Urbana’s draft Climate Action Plan Phase 2

Monday, September 8, 2014 - 11:00am

Room 439, Natural Resources Building

Presented by: Scott R. TessEnvironmental Sustainability Manager, City of Urbana, IL

Urbana’s first 2 year phase of the City’s Climate Action Plan concludes at the end of 2014.  Phase 2 of the Climate Action Plan zeroes in on a smaller number of strategies that the city can employ to reach a 25% reduction in community greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 from a 2007 baseline.  As part of the plan development process, an updated greenhouse gas inventory tool was used to create a 2013 inventory and update the 2007 baseline inventory. 

The City is now accepting public comment on the plan at    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/W32QN3K.

About speaker:  Scott R. Tess earned his B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his Masters of Planning from Rollins College. As the Environmental Sustainability Manager for the City of Urbana, IL, Scott oversees the Recycling and Environmental Compliance programs and is responsible for working with the Sustainability Advisory Commission to implement the City’s Climate Action Plan and Sustainable Water Management Plan. Prior to his current appointment, Scott was the Pollution Prevention (P2) Coordinator for the Orange County, FL Environmental Protection Division. He also worked in the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Program for Orange County, FL. Before joining Orange County, Scott worked for the Florida Department of Health, Division of Environmental Health in the well and septic programs. Scott is also a LEED Green Associate.

Please note, this seminar will be held in room 439.


ISGS Seminar Series: Film viewing: Alan Alda: Helping the public get beyond a blind date with science

Monday, September 15, 2014 - 11:00am

Room 439, Natural Resources Building

Alan Alda, award-winning actor and visiting professor at the Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University, talks about his experiences with communicating science to the general public. Looking to close the gap between the scientific community and the public, Mr. Alda discusses what needs to be improved, and how science can be better understood.

Discussion to follow.


ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, September 22, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, September 29, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: NO SEMINAR (GHGT-12 Conference)

Monday, October 6, 2014 (All day)

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, October 13, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: NO SEMINAR (GSA meeting)

Monday, October 20, 2014 (All day)

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, October 27, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, November 3, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, November 10, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, November 17, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: NO SEMINAR (Thanksgiving Holiday)

Monday, November 24, 2014 (All day)

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, December 1, 2014 - 11:00am

ISGS Seminar Series: TBD

Monday, December 8, 2014 - 11:00am