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Earth 101: Where Does Your Water Come From?


Where does our water come from?

In free public lecture at UC Riverside environemntal scientist Daniel Schlenk will outline steps needed to maintain both water quality and quantity

By Iqbal Pitalwala April 30, 2012

water imageTurn on the faucet, and out pours water — a familiar experience for the majority of us in the United States.  But where does this water come from?

The public has an opportunity to find out on May 10, when Daniel Schlenk, a professor of aquatic ecotoxicology at the University of California, Riverside, will give a free lecture on campus in which he will provide an understanding of the unique aspects of water transport and generation.  He also will address what we will need to do in the future to maintain the quality and quantity of water we currently enjoy in California.

His hour-long lecture is titled “Earth 101: Where Does Your Water Come From?”  It will begin at 6 p.m. in Rooms D-E, University Extension Center (UNEX).

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Seating is open.  Parking at UNEX will be free for lecture attendees.

“Water is necessary for life and western society has come to ‘expect’ clean water, but most of the world’s population does not have access to adequate drinking water,” said Schlenk, a faculty member in the Department of Environmental Sciences.  “Not only do we in the west have adequate drinking water, we have enough to use ‘drinking water’ to groom our lawns and flush our sewage down the drain.  Let’s be thankful for the water we have.  Let’s cherish and conserve it.”

Schlenk’s research interests focus upon mechanisms of action of pesticides and emerging compounds in aquatic organisms.  He received his Ph.D. in toxicology from Oregon State University in 1989.  He was supported by a National Institute of Environmental Health Science postdoctoral fellowship at Duke University from 1989 to1991.  He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and, since 2007, he has been a permanent member of the USEPA FIFRA Science Advisory Panel which he currently chairs.

Photo shows Daniel Schlenk in his office.

Daniel Schlenk is a professor of aquatic ecotoxicology at UC Riverside. Photo credit: UCR Strategic Communications.

He serves on the editorial boards of Toxicological Sciences, Aquatic Toxicology and Marine Environmental Research.  He has co-edited a 2 volume series entitled “Target Organ Toxicity in Marine and Freshwater Teleosts” and has published more than 165 peer reviewed journal articles.

He is a recipient of the Ray Lankester Investigatorship of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, and has served as a visiting scholar at the Instituto Del Mare, Venice, Italy; a visiting scholar at the Chinese University of Hong Kong; a visiting scientist at the CSIRO Lucas Heights Laboratory, Sydney, Australia; and a distinguished fellow at Xiamen University, China.

This year’s lecture series, titled “Earth 101: What You Need to Know About Life on Our Planet,” aims to boost the public’s awareness and understanding of science and of how scientists work.

Schlenk’s lecture, the last one in the series, will be introduced by Dean Nielsen, a science teacher in the Murieta Unified School District.

The talks are being hosted by UCR’s College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences and the Science Circle, a group of university and community members committed to advancing science in Inland Southern California.

More information about the lecture series can be obtained by visiting www.cnas.ucr.edu, calling (951) 827-6555 or emailing Carol Lerner.

Teachers interested in receiving professional development credit for attending the lecture series must make arrangements in advance with University Extension [awebb@ucx.ucr.edu; (951) 827-1653].


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