1) How do carbon cycling (generally) and metabolic processes (specifically) in lakes and other aquatic ecosystems vary between ecological regions, and how are they responding to anthropogenic stressors such as eutrophication and climate change?
2) What role do benthic/littoral processes play in potential short- and long-term shifts in aquatic ecosystem functioning?
3) Can the conceptualization of ecosystems as exhibiting self-stabilizing regimes assist our efforts to conserve and manage these ecosystems?
4) Can our understanding of the above processes be used to improve management and restoration planning in aquatic systems?
Within these themes, we focus on a broad spectrum of topics and ideas, ranging from microbial processes, up through food web relationships, and all the way to local, regional, or global patterns in the way lakes interact with their surrounding landscapes and the Earth’s atmosphere.
Desiccation of Great Salt Lake In collaboration with Drs. Janice Brahney (USU), Clark Rushing (USU), Jennifer Givens (USU) and Emily Burchfield (Emory), this project examines multiple facets of the environmental and social implications of the desiccation of Utah's Great Salt Lake.
Eutrophication and paleolimnology of Utah Lake In collaboration with Dr. Janice Brahney (USU), this project examines the historical establishment of eutrophication in Utah Lake since the 1800s, and models primary production thresholds to provide lake managers with ecologically-derived clear-water restoration targets.
Assessing the effects of climate change on the net metabolism and carbon cycling of Arctic Lakes In collaboration with Dr. Trisha Atwood, Dr. Janice Brahney, and Dr. Phaedra Budy (all at USU), this project examines the long-term relationships between climate change and tundra lake metabolism, focusing on lakes at the Toolik Long-term Ecological Research Station.
Henry's Fork water quality response to Island Park management In collaboration with Dr. Phaedra Budy (USU) and the Henry's Fork Foundation, this project examines the food web and nutrient cycling dynamics of the Henry's Fork River (ID), with a particular focus on the role of long-term changes in submerged macrophyte communities.