ISTC Looks Back, and to the Future During Anniversary
VIDEO 5: Jeff Levengood, spoke about the strong collaboration between ISTC and the other four state surveys during its history. The diverse expertise of the scientists at the Prairie Research Institute’s four other surveys — spanning water, geology, natural history, and archaeology — enabled them to examining complex, place-based, legacy environmental contamination and degradation issues.
The work resulted in research reports published by the center, but also in refereed journal articles. He said this work helped communities around Illinois in managing their contamination problems but the collaborations also made significant contributions to the knowledge base in the field.
At Lake Calumet, Waukegan Harbor, Lake DePue and other post-industrial natural habitats, the surveys studied exposure and uptake of pollution by wildlife. They tracked changes in habits including nesting, foraging, reproduction in the birds, fish and the greater ecosystem. The information helped lead to innovative restoration projects at compromised sites in the state.
“I think we have to be proud,” Levengood said, “anybody that was involved in those early studies, because we really kind of kicked this off and helped to show what could be, what was possible.”
He quoted Nicole Kamins Barker, who worked on the Lake Calumet restoration as part of the Chicago Department of Environment, who said “The Surveys’ involvement took our work in the Calumet region to a new level of effectiveness by merging the latest scientific research with natural resource planning and management.”
NEXT UP: Timothy Lindsey, “Incorporating Innovation into Pollution Prevention and Sustainability.”