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Sustainability and Ecoroofs

February 11, 2016

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Through the Katherine Bisbee II Fund of the Oregon Community Foundation, the Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges & Universities awards $15,000 grants to support collaborative undergraduate conservation research projects. Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies Jessica Kleiss is collaborating with the University of Portland and the City of Portland’s Bureau of Environmental Services on one such recently funded project entitled, “How sustainable are ecoroofs? An evaluation of the cooling effect, water retention, and water quality from ecoroofs in the Portland Area”. This project will involve undergraduate students from both Lewis & Clark and the University of Portland in research with a broad spectrum of real-world implications. Students will collect climate and rainfall data, monitor runoff events, and collect runoff samples from two sample sites–the top of Shiley Hall at the University of Portland and the top of the new Career Center in Templeton at Lewis & Clark. By evaluating water retention and runoff water quality, the project will help determine how ecoroof performance can be improved for the benefit of receiving waters. In addition to providing students with research experiences and enhancing professional collaborations, this analysis will provide the City of Portland and other constituencies with accurate ecoroof data, thereby informing the development of ecoroof standards and guidelines. (February 2016)

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