Leopold Center and Iowa Water Center Embark On Climate Study

Leopold Center and Iowa Water Center Embark On Climate Study

Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Iowa Water Center are collaborating on new climate change/water resource research.

Climate variability and how it impacts the way we manage water resources is the focus of a new research venture between the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and the Iowa Water Center.

The Leopold Center is supporting the Iowa Water Center's 2014 Institute Research Grants 104(b) program funded by the U.S. Geological Survey. This annual competitive program funds up to two years of a research project that tackles water resources problems. The program encourages collaboration among water-resource researchers who work in Iowa universities, state agencies and federal offices located in Iowa.

FOCUS ON CLIMATE AND WATER: The Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University, and the Iowa Water Center, also based at ISU, announced this week they are joining forces on a research project that will look at climate variability and how it impacts the way Iowa is managing its water resources.

"We are happy to partner with the Iowa Water Center to support this important research, given our similar interests in protecting and improving the quality of Iowa's water resources," says Leopold Center director Mark Rasmussen.

Leopold Center, Iowa Water Center to work together on this new climate study

The partnership between the two centers will be for one year. Leopold Center funds will used to reduce the 2:1 local match required from investigators to a 1:1 match.

The 2014 grant program, administered in Iowa by the Iowa Water Center, will focus on understanding climate variability in relation to water management. In Iowa, this variability includes extreme events from one year to the next: major flooding followed by drought. Changes in total amount of precipitation and in its frequency and intensity directly affect the magnitude and timing of runoff as well as the intensity of floods and droughts. According to the Request for Proposals, water management relative to climate variability includes a variety of potential topics, from crop water stress and nutrient management to impacts on in-stream ecosystems and water-based recreation.

Proposals are due to the Iowa Water Center no later than 5 p.m., November 18, 2013. The RFP is on the IWC website (go to "IWC Grant Tools" under Quick Links).~~~PAGE_BREAK_HERE~~~

Located on the ISU campus, the centers have complementary missions and legislative mandates. The Iowa Water Center is part of a national network created by the U.S. Congress in 1964 to safeguard the nation's water resources. The Leopold Center was created by the Iowa Legislature in 1987 as part of the Iowa Groundwater Protection Act to research alternative methods of farming that conserve Iowa's natural resources.

Both Rasmussen and Cruse signed the recent "2013 Iowa Climate Statement: A Rising Challenge to Iowa Agriculture"—a document that encourages action to reduce heat-trapping gases and implement adaptation and mitigation strategies relate to climate change. The statement was supported by 155 science faculty and research staff from 36 Iowa colleges and universities.

Research Results from the Leopold Center for October 2013

In other news from the Leopold Center this week, following are summaries of five recently completed projects sponsored by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture. These summaries are now available online.   

"You'll find multi-page summaries and one-page briefs for each project available for download in an easy-to-read format," says Mark Rasmussen, director of the Leopold Center. "Summaries from earlier projects are available as well. The Leopold Center has funded more than 500 competitive grant projects since 1988 under four initiatives: Marketing & Food Systems, Ecology, Policy and Cross-cutting."

Below is a list of the newest research reports--click on the link the title for information about the grant, including links to project summaries and related information.

* Investigating opportunities for enhancing farmer adoption of a strategically targeted prairie strips in Iowa

* Iowa Farm Energy Working Group

* Micro-Farming: Reducing rural and urban food deserts through job training

* Research and development of an online local foods buying club cooperative

* The University of Iowa Biomass Partnership Project

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