Dr. Stephanie Stotts, Associate Professor of Environmental Science, Wesley College, and faculty members at the University of Delaware, University of Maryland, George Washington University, Boston University, and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science College of William and Marry were awarded a National Science Foundation Critical-Zone Collaborative Network grant titled, “The Coastal Critical Zone: Processes that transform landscapes and fluxes between land and Sea”. Dr. Holly A. Michael, Professor, Unidel Fraser Russell Career Development Chair for the Environment, University of Delaware, serves as the principal project lead.
The multi-year cooperative agreement provides over $2M in research funding to the collaborating institutions. Sea-level rise is driving changes in both forest and agricultural areas in the Mid-Atlantic region. This research project seeks to explore the fluxes and interactions between land and sea using high-tech monitoring at paired forest-agricultural field sites in Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware. Dr. Stotts and undergraduate researchers at Wesley College will contribute to the project by compiling tree-ring chronologies from the field sites using Wesley’s tree-ring laboratory. Dr. Stotts’ team will also assist with the installation, maintenance, and monitoring of various soil, water, and tree monitoring equipment at the Delaware Field Site which is located at the St. Jones Reserve.