Release Date: June 15, 2005
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The streams of Western New York are a workshop this summer for biologists, ecologists, engineers and environmental planners who want to learn techniques for restoring inland waterways to their natural state.
The Great Lakes Program at the University at Buffalo is offering two "Stream Restoration and Design" workshops, taught by instructors from UB, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, The Nature Conservancy and Ecology and Environment, Inc.
The workshop "Riverine Ecosystem Restoration," will be held June 27 through July 1, and will provide an overview of natural stream restoration techniques. It will focus on the physical makeup of riverine ecosystems, including analysis of sediment transport, vegetation, hydraulics and fluvial geomorphology -- how land is formed by running water.
"Innovative Bioengineering Methods and Planting Techniques to Enhance Streams and Riparian Areas," will be held July 11 through July 15 and will focus on understanding native plant communities and invasive exotics, with instruction in bioengineering planting methods and demonstrations.
The workshops will be held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in 414 Bonner Hall on UB's North Campus and at five stream-restoration sites throughout the area. Cost is $1,250 per workshop or $2,000 for two workshops. Participants can earn continuing education credits for Professional Engineer licensure requirements. To register, go to http://www.eng.buffalo.edu/glp/events/summer2005.htm or call 645-2768, ext. 1106.
"The workshops will focus on how engineering techniques can be used to replicate the way nature restores and preserves its streams," says workshops coordinator Joseph Atkinson, Ph.D., director of UB's Great Lakes Program. "The idea is to bring perturbed water systems back to their natural state."
According to Atkinson, UB's Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering soon may develop a graduate-level program in stream restoration.
Western New York is an ideal area to focus on stream restoration, according to workshop instructor Dave Derrick, a research hydraulic engineer at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Research and Development Center in Vicksburg, Miss.
"This area has great varieties of waters and wetlands, but many are not functioning properly and need anywhere from some rehabilitation to complete restoration of the stream and riparian corridor," he says.