Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Environment Lecture Series begins with dam removal

The first event in this year’s Environmental Lecture Series will be a presentation by Bill Zawiski, an environmental scientist with the Division of Surface Water, Ohio EPA.  That presentation will be Thursday, Jan. 22 at 7:30 pm in the Ronk Lecture Hall, COE.

Zawiski’s talk is titled “Dam Removal in Ohio: A fish is swimming upstream and hits its head and what does it say...?”

Deconstruction of Mill Dam, Cuyahoga Falls, OH (credit: Ohio Environmental Protection Agency).

Zawiski will focus initially on the ecology of streams influenced by dams and will discuss the decision-making process for evaluating sites, as well as the process for removing a dam in Ohio. He also will discuss some specific projects and the consequences of removal on stream ecology.

Bill Zawiski, environmental scientist, Division of Surface Water, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency showing off a small-mouthed bass (Micropterus dolomieu)

Zawiski has been with Ohio EPA for more than 25 years and focuses on surface water quality assessments and facility regulation. In addition, he was a lecturer at the University of Akron for 12 years, teaching classes in Water Resources and Environmental Regulation.

Zawiski has been a co-author on several peer-reviewed publications that reported research into Ohio fish and mussel communities, pollutants and the effects of dam removal. His interest in the aquatic realm started in the Rocky River, was important throughout his education, and continues to this day.

This year’s Environmental Lecture Series explores “People and Environment: Restoration and Rehabilitation of Natural Areas,” with perspectives from experts in dam removal and urban rehabilitation. The series will explore different examples of projects intended to restore or rehabilitate the natural functions of habitats that have been heavily affected by development projects. 

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