Dairy farmers can adapt to climate change

January 5, 2022

Dairy farmers in the Northeast — facing a warming climate that exacerbates nutrient pollution but lengthens the growing season — can reduce the environmental impact of their operations and maximize revenues by double cropping and injecting manure into the soil, rather than broadcasting it.

College of Ag Sciences helps students offset carbon footprint when traveling

December 2, 2021

A new program in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences is helping students reduce their carbon footprints while studying abroad. The Sustainable and Accessible Study Abroad initiative began last year to encourage students to incorporate sustainable practices into their study abroad experiences by supporting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

College of Ag Sciences professor elected president of professional association

November 29, 2021

Karen Fisher-Vanden, professor of environmental and resource economics and public policy in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, has been elected president of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.

Penn State professor helps spearhead global plant-health conference in France

November 18, 2021

If action isn’t taken to protect the health of the world’s plants, the prognosis for some species is poor, especially in regions that lack plant protection policies and extension services, according to scientists who participated in an international workshop and conference that was co-led by a plant pathologist at Penn State.

New tool weighs costs and benefits of managing evolution of pathogens and pests

November 16, 2021

Spend money now on antibiotic stewardship practices or save the money but run the risk of potentially deadly antibiotic-resistant bacteria emerging later? A new economic tool can help physicians, farmers and other people whose activities may influence the evolution of biological organisms, such as pathogens and insects, decide when they should invest in evolution management strategies.

Urbanization not always bad for food and land use diversity

November 16, 2021

Widely accepted myths that urbanization negatively impacts food and land use biodiversity are incorrect, according to a team of researchers who developed a framework for evaluating this intersection. Their results could also affect nutrition and food insecurity in urban areas.

Penn State awarded nearly $39M for global research on threats to crops

November 9, 2021

Reducing the negative effects of pests, diseases and weeds on crops in a climate-changed world is the goal of a multi-institution team led by Penn State and funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) as part of the organization’s initiative to end global hunger. The award was announced today (Nov. 6) by Administrator Samantha Power of the United States Agency for International Development at the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference.

Popular perennial flowering plants can attract diverse mix of pollinators

October 28, 2021

Co-author Christina Grozinger, Publius Vergilius Maro Professor of Entomology and director of Penn State's Center for Pollinator Research, explained that in urban and suburban areas, people often select varieties of ornamental plants for their gardens because of their appearance and growth habits. "Many of these varieties have been developed by breeders to appeal to consumer, rather than pollinator, preference," said Grozinger, who also directs the Insect Biodiversity Center in the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences. "There has been concern that these plant varieties are no longer attractive to pollinators.

Honey Has Numerous Health Benefits for Bees

October 26, 2021

From pesticide detox to increased longevity, the pros of the sweet stuff go well beyond simply nourishing the hardworking insects in the hive

Penn State-led team awarded $17M to study climate risk and adaptation strategies

October 21, 2021

A multi-institutional research team led by Penn State has been awarded a $17 million, five-year cooperative research agreement with the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science to understand how interconnected systems are exposed to natural hazards that create vulnerabilities and risks for society and how societies respond and adapt to these risks.

Novel lighting system designed for machine vision module of agricultural robots

October 12, 2021

A novel camera system using active lighting devised by Penn State researchers may be a crucial step in developing machine vision systems that allow robotic devices to more clearly "see" the agricultural targets with which they will react.

Phase 3 Winners of Nittany AiChallenge guided by SAFES Associate Director of Research

September 29, 2021

Many congratulations to the InsectEye team, who were one of two teams selected for Phase 3 funding in the Nittany AI Challenge!

Urban stormwater study finds little difference between managed, unmanaged flows

September 15, 2021

At a time when many municipalities are seeking to control urban stormwater by investing heavily in green infrastructure — such as water-quality ponds, infiltration basins, porous pavement and riparian plantings — a new study suggests that these expensive efforts may not have much of an impact.

Software tool that finds spots for water-quality devices will work in Northeast

September 15, 2021

A computer software package widely used in the Midwest to strategically position riparian buffers and other structures aimed at protecting water quality on agricultural land can be used effectively in the eastern United States, with some limitations, Penn State researchers report in a new study.

Proposals for energy, environment research projects being accepted

September 13, 2021

The Institutes of Energy and the Environment (IEE) announced its 2021–22 Seed Grant Program. The funding is intended to foster basic and applied interdisciplinary energy and environmental research that leverages faculty expertise across the University. The deadline to submit proposals is 5 p.m. on Nov. 19.

National society to recognize two Penn State entomologists

September 13, 2021

Two entomologists in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences will receive prestigious awards from the Entomological Society of America during its 2021 annual meeting, which will take place in person and online Oct. 31 to Nov. 3 in Denver, Colorado.

Armyworms wreak havoc on lawns, crops in 'unprecedented' outbreak

September 7, 2021

Ben McGraw, an associate professor of turfgrass science at Pennsylvania State University, surveyed dead turf on a Pennsylvania golf course Friday. The turf recently had been attacked by fall armyworms.

No-till production farmers can cut herbicide use, control weeds, protect profits

September 2, 2021

Farmers using no-till production — in which soil never or rarely is plowed or disturbed — can reduce herbicide use and still maintain crop yields by implementing integrated weed-management methods, according to a new study conducted by Penn State researchers.

Penn State centers collaborate on pollinator education project

September 2, 2021

Kathy Hill, associate professor of education (science education) in the College of Education and director of the Center for Science and the Schools (CSATS), and Christina Grozinger, Publius Vergilius Maro Professor of Entomology in the College of Agricultural Sciences and director of the Center for Pollinator Research (CPR), are leading a team that has been awarded a $300,000 grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The grant will allow the team to partner with elementary school teachers in Pennsylvania to develop cross-disciplinary curricula to support their students in understanding pollinator research in the areas of food, agriculture and natural resources.

Nitrous oxide emissions, coming from legume cover crops, manure, can be reduced

August 2, 2021

The application of manure after the growth and demise of legume cover crops in rotations is a recipe to increase nitrous oxide releases during ensuing corn growth, according to a team of Penn State researchers who conducted a new study. They suggest that innovative management strategies are needed to reduce these emissions.

Penn State agricultural research highlighted on Ag Progress Days tours

July 16, 2021

A variety of research and educational programs related to agriculture and natural resources will be in the spotlight on several tours to be offered during Penn State's Ag Progress Days, Aug. 10-12 at Rock Springs.

Water resources professor receives 2021 Black Award for excellence in research

July 8, 2021

Elizabeth Boyer, professor of water resources in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, is the 2021 recipient of the Alex and Jessie C. Black Award for excellence in research.

Ag Sciences student finds research, extracurricular opportunities abound

June 21, 2021

As a high school junior, Alyssa Curry thought she wanted nothing to do with Penn State when her parents suggested that she consider the school for college.

Interdisciplinary projects awarded seed grants from IEE

June 18, 2021

The Institutes of Energy and the Environment (IEE) has awarded seed grants to 22 groups of interdisciplinary researchers at Penn State for the 2020-21 award cycle. IEE established a Seed Grant Program in 2013 to foster basic and applied research addressing IEE’s research themes. Since then, IEE has awarded grants to more than 148 interdisciplinary projects across 15 Penn State colleges and campuses.

Biodiversity seed grants support innovative collaborations across Penn State

June 17, 2021

Seven Penn State faculty teams have received seed grants for biodiversity research as part of the 2021 “Mainstreaming Biodiversity in a Decade of Action” symposium, developed by Christina Grozinger, Publius Vergilius Maro Professor of Entomology and director of the Center for Pollinator Research, in collaboration with Penn State’s Sustainability Institute (SI).

Novel study looks at nitrogen credit trading to spur growth of riparian buffers

June 9, 2021

Watershedwide nutrient credit trading has been suggested as a mechanism for reducing pollution entering the Chesapeake Bay, but a new study by Penn State researchers suggests that the high cost of producing nitrogen credits through the establishment of riparian buffers on Pennsylvania farmland currently does not provide an incentive for buffer establishment.

Computational scientists help enable, scale agricultural research

May 25, 2021

In her 20 years of bee research, Christina Grozinger had not faced a data management problem quite like the one she encountered in 2020. Grozinger, Publius Vergilius Maro Professor of Entomology at Penn State, studies ways to counteract declining bee populations, and her research requires her to acquire, send and analyze data across teams in a precise way.

Institutes partner to connect researchers with computing resources

April 19, 2021

The Institute for Sustainable Agricultural, Food, and Environmental Science (SAFES) in the College of Agricultural Sciences has announced a partnership with the Institute for Computational and Data Sciences to help faculty leverage the computing services of the Research Innovations with Scientists and Engineering (RISE) team.

USDA grant to support expansion of online tool for pollinator conservation

April 16, 2021

A Penn State-led research team has received a nearly $950,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture grant to create the next generation of an online decision-support tool designed to help conserve pollinator populations across the United States.

EarthTalks: Sir Dieter Helm to discuss carbon pricing as tool to reach net zero

April 15, 2021

Technology is not the only means of achieving net-zero carbon emissions. Economics can also supply the needed incentives for individuals and businesses to reduce their carbon footprints. Sir Dieter Helm, professor of economic policy at the University of Oxford and fellow in economics at New College, Oxford, will discuss the need for a carbon price as a means of lowering emissions at a talk at noon on Monday, April 19. The seminar, which is free and open to the public, will be broadcast via Zoom.