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DGE Newsletter, January 2007
Field & Berry Labs
Seminar, Jan. 31: Dr. Donald R. Zak, School of Natural Resources & Dept. Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, Univ. Michigan, spoke on Plant-microbe interactions in soil mediate ecosystem response to elevated carbon dioxide and ozone.
Jan. 10: At this first meeting of the Quarter, we decided to continue meeting on Wednesdays at 1 PM. A schedule was outlined in which each member of the group, will present some aspect of his/hers current research or update except on those days when an outside Seminar Speaker is visiting and willing to meet with us. The presenter will also provide the Tasting that day.
Today Chris provided the Tasting of six kinds of chocolate chip cookies. Three were baked from mixes from Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, and Safeway (Nestles). Two were from Bakeries and one was in a package from Nabisco. All were delicious.
Jan. 17: Ulli Seibt has developed both foliage oxygen isotope and soil oxygen isotope models and then integrated the two into a whole ecosystem isotope model. She showed how the "Flood of the Century" in a central German forest rained an unusual amount of isotopically light water into the system, which allowed her to explore the importance of bidirectional fluxes of water into and out of the leaf.
Ulli's Tasting was of commercial popcorn, three popped varieties and two microwaveable; Trader Joe's White Cheddar and Lite Gold Rush, Kettle (organic), Act II Microwave, and Paul Newman Microwave. Each popcorn was unique, i.e. saltier, sweeter, cheesier, plainer. Many people were ambivalent and would choose any among them for light snackage. (Reported by Adam)
Ulli added: The Paul Newman Microwave popcorn was the organic, "light butter" version. People liked its taste (it was gone faster than the others) but there was a lot more unpopped residue than for the Act II. The Trader Joe's white cheddar had an artificial taste, was the least favorite, and most of it is still there. The Gold Rush Kettle was the favorite, but it is also the most expensive ($4.95 at Andronico's).
Jan. 24: Jason Funk presented a paper that he intends to give next month in New Zealand titled: Lessons from a carbon sequestration pilot project on Maori land, linking science, culture & policy. Much of Maori land is communally owned, and therefore, requires special laws and policies when it's to be used for carbon sequestration. Jason is trying to work out a model for doing this.
Tasting: Jason brought five kinds of olives from Whole Foods Store including Black Ceriignola, Cracked Sicilian Green, Australian Manzenilla, Pitted Kalonata, & Fide's Sicilian Mixed. All were good, but the spicy Sicilian Green disappeared first.
Jan. 31: Don Zac (today's seminar speaker) spoke about large scale experiments being conducted in his laboratory to measure coherence between plants and microbial communities at a landscape perspective. They are studying the relationships between heterotrophic soil microbes in three forests including maples and oaks, each with different plant understories.
Tasting: (provide by Yuka) was of six varieties of prepared mustard, purchased at Whole Foods Inc., including Annie's Horseradish, Garlic Honey, Napa Valley chili & garlic, Creole, Mendocino Spicy with beer (ale), and Maine Maple Champagne. The Mendocino Spicy was the favorite, but all were enjoyed with small slices of French bread.
Special Projects Coordinator, Mary Smith is now in residence in the DGE Building, Room 208, Ph. 650-462-1047 ext 236.  Same e-mail address.  She welcomes visitors.

Chris Field and Joe Berry, with Adam Wolf assisting, are teaching a Stanford Graduate Course titled Biosphere/Atmosphere Interactions during the current Winter Quarter.

Two radio shows that Ken Caldeira did in November are available on the web. One of them was on the PRI/BBC program called "The World" and was about the warming influence of forests in high latitudes. It is available at: <http://www.theworld.org/wma.php?id=12157>. It lasts about 5 minutes and went out nationally.
The other program was the Frontiers program on BBC Radio 4 -- the main British "intellectual" talk radio channel. The program was on geoengineering and is available at: <http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/science/frontiers.shtml>. It lasts about 30 minutes.
Ken is also working on his Web site and has placed Tom Schelling's talk from last November (See Archives) on the Web. It is available at
Thanks to Geoff Brady of Pacifica Radio for recording the talk, and to Geoff and Tom Schelling for permission to post this talk on the web.
On Jan. 16, an OP-ED letter by Caldeira was published in the New York Times titled When Being Green Raises the Heat. Also on the 16th, Ken was interviewed again on KQED's Radio Forum talking about the cold spell.
Jan. 30: Both Ken and Chris appeared on several Network News Channels worldwide discussing Climate Change.

Asner Lab

From mid December to Mid January Angelica Almeyda and Eben Broadbent conducted field work in the MAP region, where we worked the previous summer. The aim of the field work was to conduct interviews with small farmers and households in general in Peru, Brazil and Bolivia. As this was the rainy season it was a real adventure. To view photos see: <http://picasaweb.google.com/ebennb/AmazonChristmas200607>
Most of the Asner crew are working in Hawaii to test the the new Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO) program, which brings together new remote sensing technologies on an airplane to study ecosystems at the regional level.  (See November 06 Archive)

Archives and PDF Archives of past Newsletters,
Click on photos for enlargement.
Alumni News

Jan. 19: Dave Kroodsma is biking south from Santiago, Chili!

Editor Jan Brown, e-mail: jbrown1@stanford.edu