Research Projects


News & Events  arrow

The Nonpoint Source (NPS) Annual Monitoring Initiative

The Nonpoint Source (NPS) annual monitoring initiative and on-line reporting system for water quality was created for ODNR’s Division of Mineral Resources Management in 2005. Voinovich School staff, faculty and students continue to evaluate the success of the acid mine drainage reclamation projects throughout the coal-bearing region of Ohio in term of stream mile recovery, acid load reductions, and project costs annually. All reports, maps, water quality data, and stream health maps can be accessed at www.watersheddata.com.

Zero Waste Business Webinars

The Appalachia Ohio Zero Waste Initiative (AOZWI), a partnership in Southeastern Ohio between the Ohio University Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs’ Consortium for Energy, Economics & the Environment (CE3) and community organization Rural Action, will offer a series of zero waste webinars to explore how different industries are implementing waste minimization and waste diversion practices. Join us as we explore zero waste concepts and learn more about zero waste best practices. Watch for these upcoming webinars:

Zero Waste in the Health Care Sector: June 29, 2016, 12:00-1:00 PM
Thank you to our panelists and participants. Below please find the presentations from the webinar. A recording of the webinar is archived here on the CE3 YouTube Channel.

  • Moderator: John Glazer, Director, TechGROWTH Ohio (presentation as .pdf)
  • Sydney Webber, Director of Marketing and Communication, OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital (presentation as .pdf)
  • Mike Long, President, Resource100 LTD, Network Leader, Ohio By-Product Synergy Network and Member, Mount Carmel Health System “Green Team” (presentation as .pdf)
  • Britta Harman, Director of Business Operations, MedWish International (presentation as .pdf)
  • Webinar flyer (.pdf)

Zero Waste in Manufacturing: Coming Soon!
Zero Waste in the Food & Beverage Sector: Coming Soon!

Please think before you print!


Securing America’s Energy Future

In 2006, CE3 released Ohio: Securing America’s Energy Future, the first statewide energy policy plan in more than 10 years, which informs energy policy strategies evolving today in Ohio. Click here to read the 2006 report, and click here to read the 2008 update.

The Raccoon Creek Partnership

Since 1999, the Voinovich School has coordinated the efforts to restore the Raccoon Creek Watershed from acid mine drainage. The Raccoon Creek Partnership, sponsored by Ohio University, works toward conservation, stewardship, and restoration of the watershed for a healthier stream and community. Nearly $20 million has been spent on 17 successful reclamation projects (as of 2015), resulting in improved stream health for more than 42 miles of streams in areas previously impacted by acid mine drainage. For more information visit www.raccooncreek.org or find us on Facebook. A short video titled a “Raccoon Creek a Wonder to Wander,” created by OU student, Nora Rye, and the Raccoon Creek Partnership, can be found on YouTube.

OHIO Zero Waste

OHIO Zero Waste is part of the Appalachia Ohio Zero Waste Initiative (AOZWI), with a specific goal of bringing together student organizations and OHIO administrative and academic units to promote green events and zero waste choices. Led by a student coordinator, OHIO Zero Waste works with campus events of all sizes, including large events like Athens Beautification Day, OHIO Commencement and Move Out to reduce waste and promote reuse and recycling. To learn more about Green Events, or to register your event as a Green Event, please visit http://www.ohio.edu/sustainability/programs/Green-Events.cfm or contact zerowaste@ohio.edu. Interested in where to recycle your stuff during Move Out? Here's a pdf map of donation sites around the city! Or click here for the web link, which is great for mobile devices: www.ce3.ohio.edu/15. . For updates about our projects and to be part of the #ZeroWasteCrew, follow us at @OHIOzerowaste on Twitter.


Webinar: Jobs and Workforce Development in Ohio’s Shale Industry

On December 7, 2016, from 12:00-1:30 pm, the Voinovich School hosted a complimentary webinar which examined workforce development in Ohio related to oil and gas development. Our panel of experts also presented innovative measures that can deepen and diversify opportunities for the regional workforce. The webinar can be watched in full on our CE3 YouTube Channel at https://youtu.be/rtrmHThAw7Q. To read the supporting white paper, please click here to be redirected. Our speakers included:

  • Rhonda L. Reda, Executive Director, Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) and the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Foundation (Foundation): Before helping to form OOGEEP in 1997, Rhonda Reda served as vice president, internal affairs and public information for the Ohio Oil and Gas Association and also worked for several oil and gas companies.  Collectively, she has more than 28 years of experience in the crude oil and natural gas industry. Reda is an active member of the Ohio Oil and Gas Association (OOGA), Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA), Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) and the Ohio Geological Society (OGS).  She is a graduate of OHIO and Edison State College. Click here for Ms. Reda's presentation in .pdf.
  • Dan Schweitzer, Director, Oil & Gas, Environmental, CDL, Stark State College and Director, ShaleNET: Dan Schweitzer’s responsibilities include project scoping, curriculum development, degree program steering, community and industry outreach, course instruction, and workforce training development. One of Dan’s primary duties is to integrate the needs of the Appalachian Basin laborshed into college degree and workforce training programs. Schweitzer received his B.S. and M.S. in geology from Kent State University and has more than 10 years of experience as a geologist and project manager in environmental remediation, assessment and contaminant fate and transport. Click here for Mr. Schweitzer's presentation in .pdf.
  • Joel S. Yudken, Ph.D., Principal, High Road Strategies, LLC: Joel Yudken is the founder of High Road Strategies of Arlington, VA, an economic policy research, analysis and design consultancy, with a focus on sustainable manufacturing, energy and workforce issues. His clients have included industry, labor, public policy, environmental, academic, and government organizations. Yudken has held positions previously with AFL-CIO, NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and as congressional staff. He holds a B.S. in electrical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and a M.S. in management science and engineering and Ph.D. in technology and society from Stanford University. Click here for Mr. Yudken's presentation in .pdf.
  • Moderator: Jonathan Norris, Researcher, Ohio University Voinovich School: Jonathan Norris is a researcher with OHIO’s Shale Innovation Project. His research interests include energy policy, innovation systems, and the transition of communities historically dependent on resource extraction toward sustainable, carbon-constrained, and economically diverse futures. Previously, Norris worked as a consulting engineer for Tata Consultancy Services in Cincinnati. He has a B.S. in engineering technology and management from OHIO and is currently pursuing his M.S. in environmental studies from OHIO. Click here for Mr. Norris' presentation in .pdf.


GeoVisualization tools provide stakeholders with the ability to make balanced environmental decisions using available information on a complex set of environmental data and examining a number of scenarios or policy options to determine a best fit. Design systems with effective visual displays, direct manipulation interfaces and dynamic queries, allow users to responsibly and confidently pursue even more ambitious projects and strategies.

Modeling the Recovery of Streams

American Electric Power (AEP) has supported watershed programs for more than a decade at the Voinovich School, through a series of programs that focus on sound science and data collection to drive water restoration efforts. Currently, AEP funds provide for the AEP professorship award, as well as AWRG collaborative project titled “Modeling the Recovery of Streams.” This is a regionally-specific model that quantifies biological recovery potential after acid mine drainage reclamation. Hewett Fork, a major tributary to Raccoon Creek, is being used as a case study for this research.

Abandoned Coal Mine Drainage Investigation in Wills Creek and White Eyes Creek

The Voinovich School has partnered with the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to engage local watershed groups to conduct a water quality investigation of abandoned coal mine drainage in Wills Creek and White Eyes Creek in Coshocton and Muskingum Counties. The School will analyze the data and provide a summary report of impacts from acid mine drainage in these streams. Once Jen Bowman, senior environmental project manager, and Gary Conley, research supervisor for Ohio University’s Air Quality Center, present their findings, the MWCD will develop a viable and cost-effective restoration plan to provide cleaner water for Ohio. An article about the project can be found here.

OHIO Webinar: Shale Midstream Market Trends in Ohio River Valley


On September 20, 2017 from 12:00-1:30 pm, the Voinovich School hosted a webinar exploring the connections between resource extraction and wealth retention.

The webinar discussed how drilling for oil and gas in the Marcellus and Utica shale plays may have slowed in recent years, but the region is poised for the next phase of industry development: the midstream. It focused specifically on these questions: As midstream operations evolve in the Marcellus and Utica area, will new transmission and refining capacity benefit regional manufacturers and their supply chains by attracting capital investments and the jobs that come with it? What is the current state of the midstream sector of the industry, what is on the horizon, and what impacts may these investments have on regional economic development and job creation? 

The webinar included speakers Jenn Klein, President of the Ohio Chemistry Technology Council, Chris Zeigler, Executive Director of API Ohio, and Kevin Petak, Managing Director for Natural Gas and Liquids Markets. It was moderated by Dr. Daniel Karney, Assistant Professor of Economics in Ohio University’s College of Arts and Sciences. The full webinar can be watched on our CE3 YouTube Channel at https://youtu.be/PUNa7PqXbrY

View Jenn Klein's presentation here, Chris Zeigler's presentation here, and Kevin Petak's presentation here

Energy Policy for Ohio Manufacturers

The CE3 team is working with The Ohio Manufacturers’ Association to help them develop a roadmap for energy policies and practices beneficial to Ohio’s manufacturing sector. Based upon the feedback received during member interviews and in combination with research conducted by CE3, OMA is leading the charge in Ohio to make energy a top issue for industry.

Southeastern Ohio Energy Business Inventory

The Voinovich School recently completed a southeastern Ohio energy business inventory as part of a grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission. The online inventory used a Web-based survey to identify, build a database of, and build a map of energy‐related businesses in the region. Additional funding received from the U.S. Economic Development Administration complements this project to expand the inventory statewide. The evolving project Web site is: http://www.ohio.edu/ce3/resources/energylocations.cfm.

Appalachia Ohio Zero Waste Initiative

The Voinovich School, in partnership with Rural Action, has been awarded multi-year funding from The Sugar Bush Foundation to continue the important work of the Appalachia Ohio Zero Waste Initiative (AOZWI). The research conducted by the Voinovich School, including case studies of select Ohio recycling programs, a residential recycling survey, wasteshed mapping, and a materials recovery facility feasibility study, helped inform the development of a community-supported Zero Waste Action Plan. Year Five activities will continue to grow tools and services for communities and businesses and increase on-campus efforts including a Principles of Waste Management course at the Voinovich School and numerous green initiatives (see “OHIO Zero Waste” project). More information can be found at http://ruralaction.org/programs/zerowaste/. Check out this YouTube video about the AOZWI called "Changing the Way We Think About Waste," and for a unique perspective on the project, watch the video of former Voinovich School Graduate Research Assistant Megan Chapman, as she shares her experience working with AOZWI.

Wind Supply Chain Mapping

The Voinovich School is completing phase six of a Wind Supply Chain Mapping Project for the Great Lakes Wind Network (GLWN). This is a database and map of more than 300 companies that are building and supplying parts for the wind energy industry. The School built and maintains this site for GLWN. The map can be found at http://map.glwn.org/default.aspx. The School also worked to develop a similar database and website for Ohio’s solar supply chain which can be found at http://www.ohiosolarenergy.org/default.aspx.

Rain to River: Raise Awareness about Stormwater Pollution Webinar

On March 28, 2017, the Voinovich School hosted a webinar to inform regional organizations and communities on protecting local waterways by organizing storm drain stenciling volunteer events. The events are meant to connect residents to their local watershed by empowering them to stencil educational messages next to storm drains. Sarah Cornwell, environmental specialist at the Voinovich School, discussed the how-tos on holding a successful stenciling event, including how to borrow all of the supplies (for free!) from Voinovich School. This webinar was targeted to units of local government, non-profit community organizations, and organizations seeking public service activities. Tailored to the Appalachian region of the Ohio River Watershed, webinar and stenciling supplies are funded by a grant from Ohio EPA’s Ohio Environmental Education Fund.

Contact Sarah Cornwell at landerss@ohio.edu if you have questions or are ready to organize an event!

The powerpoint presentation (in pdf) can be accessed here.
To view the recorded webinar from March 28, 2017 (via our CE3 YouTube channel), click here.

This webinar was hosted by the Ohio University Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs with support from the Ohio EPA and the Ohio Environmental Education Fund, in partnership with Rural Action and the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.

Webinar: Severance Taxes & Wealth Retention in Shale Country

On December 6, 2017, Ohio University hosted a Shale Innovation Project webinar entitled, "Severance Taxes & Wealth Retention in Shale Country." Severance taxes are important sources of revenue to many state governments in the U.S. that can be used for a variety of purposes such as funding current expenditures or creating permanent trust funds. Our panel of experts discussed energy taxes as they relate to regional wealth management and economic development strategies to bolster local economies. To view the speakers' presentations in .pdf, click on their names below.

Click here to view the webinar which is archived on the Voinovich School YouTube channel.

Second OHIO Shale Policy & Technology Symposium April 4-5, 2018

Ohio University’s Russ College of Engineering and Technology, Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs and College of Arts & Sciences hosted the OHIO Shale Policy & Technology Symposium on April 4-5, 2018. The 2018 Symposium built off of an inaugural event in 2017 in Athens. More than 80 attendees from across the state and region joined our OHIO research team to discuss the changing landscape of shale development. The purpose of the event is to explore ways in which regional communities and businesses can achieve a balanced, durable and long-lasting regional energy future using innovative policies, partnerships and technologies. Visit the Symposium Website for more details.

Questions? Contact Elissa Welch at welche@ohio.edu or 740-537-0112.

The Shale Innovation Project is an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Ohio University Russ College of Engineering and Technology, the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs and the College of Arts and Sciences examining the impact of shale development on businesses and communities in Ohio’s shale region. This project is generously supported by a three-year Innovation Strategy Award from the Ohio University Research Division.

Analysis of Voluntary BMPs in Reducing GHG Emissions from Appalachian Oil and Gas Sites

Increased oil and gas exploration and production come hand in hand with environmental and economic outcomes. The adoption of industry best management practices (BMPs) can help companies large and small to mitigate the negative consequences of natural resource extraction such as increased air emissions while balancing financial goals. Ohio University is working with the Bureau of Land Management regarding the opportunities and challenges associated with voluntary BMPs in the Northern Appalachian Basin oil and gas industry. For questions related to the project, please contact Elissa Welch at welche@ohio.edu.

Assuring Ohio’s Competitiveness in a Carbon-Constrained World

The Voinovich School and project partner, The Ohio State University, received a grant from the Ohio Department of Development (ODOD) to develop a framework for appropriate and useful decision support tools for state policymakers relating to energy and climate policies. The project, entitled “Assuring Ohio’s Competitiveness in a Carbon-Constrained World,” 1) identified the state’s major contributors of GHGs in an emissions database; 2) conducted an analysis of federal climate legislative proposals and the opportunities and challenges the legislation may present to the state’s economy, 3) presented policy considerations for Ohio policymakers, and 4) modeled the economic consequences of climate change legislation and energy regulations on the state’s economy. The project findings can be found at www.ohioenergyresources.com.

Carbon Footprint Analysis (Cleveland)

The Center received funding from the EPA to support a carbon footprint analysis for the city of Cleveland and has worked in northeast Ohio (with Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency), central Ohio (with Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission), and southwestern Ohio (with Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission) on a broad range of air quality issues.

PORTS Habitat Project

The PORTS Habitat Project, part of our PORTS Future contract with the U.S. Department of Energy, demonstrates the breadth of skills of the CE3 Land Team. The team is conducting detailed field assessments of 150 sample plots on the 3,700-acre DOE facility and some neighboring private lands. The result of this process will be a georeferenced database and land use map that can be utilized as a land planning tool and for wildlife management.

Ohio Shale Supply Chain Database

The Ohio Shale Energy Conference in April 2012 informally launched CE3’s business outreach efforts related to shale: the event convened more than 500 attendees interested in exploring opportunities to grow the local supply chain for shale in Ohio. The resulting Ohio Shale Supply Chain Database, funded by the USDA’s Office of Rural Development, has grown to include more than 1300 companies in regional shale supply chain. The database serves as a tool to help buyers and suppliers connect to source their shale development needs locally and, on a larger scale, showcases Ohio’s strengths to support economic development through an important regional strategic resource.

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Assistance Services

In October 2009, the Voinovich School received a $100,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission to provide energy efficiency and renewable energy assistance services to businesses and communities through the Ohio Energy Resource Center. This current project will support business development, economic development, and smart energy usage in communities throughout the region. Click here to view a recent presentation.

Appalachian Ohio’s Open Geographic Information System Web Access

The Appalachian Ohio’s Open Geographic Information System Web Access project will help counties in southeastern Ohio to more effectively create and manage their parcel data. The project will create a shared web mapping service allowing counties to publish their data online and make it available to the public. This will allow citizens, as well as public and private interests, to have access to the data for real estate, investment, and economic development purposes, and more.

Report Measures Local Pre-Fracking Baseline Water Quality

In Eastern and Southern Ohio, oil and gas leases are rapidly being signed for drilling in the Utica Shale. In order to quantify impacts of shale gas exploration, baseline environmental conditions must first be measured. With start-up funding from Ohio University and The Sugar Bush Foundation, the Voinovich School partnered with OU's Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment Laboratory (ISEE), The Sugar Bush Foundation, and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to conduct a regional shallow aquifer groundwater study. This study measured baseline water quality parameters prior to the commencement of controversial high-volume horizontal hydraulic fracturing drilling activities in and around Athens and Belmont Counties in Ohio.

Findings: The baseline establishment suggests that there is not widespread organic groundwater pollution in Athens and Belmont Counties, despite a long history of coal mining and oil and gas extraction. This information will assist rural landowners, elected officials and regulators to learn more about the complex issues surrounding hydraulic fracturing, especially as it relates to local water resources. Read the 2013 final report here.

U.S. EPA GHG Reporting Program Outreach

CE3 is working with the U.S. EPA to conduct outreach to Ohio companies whose facilities will be required to report their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under federal law. The CE3 Policy Team is working to conduct webinars, workshops and online resources that will help to inform this effort.

To visit CE3's Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program Portal, please visit: www.ohio.edu/ce3/ghgrp.

Site Repurposing Efforts for the US DOE PORTS Facility

The U.S. Department of Energy former Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PORTS) near Piketon, Ohio has been an important economic player in the Pike, Scioto, Ross, and Jackson County region for many decades. As the decommissioning and decontamination process continues at the PORTS site, it is expected that this transition period will lead to further changes in the region’s socio-economic profile. The extent to which decision-makers can minimize transitional stress and maximize the economic prospects for the region hinges greatly upon the cleanup and transfer of the PORTS site and site assets for other economic use.

Through a grant from the US DOE Office of Environmental Management Portsmouth/Paducah Project Office, the Voinovich School’s contributions to PORTS site repurposing efforts build upon findings from the School’s PORTSfuture public outreach task completed in 2011. Under the outreach task, Ohio University conducted a 15-month, broad-based, grass-roots, public participation process to identify the community’s future-use preferences for the PORTS campus. Based upon the community preferences, site repurposing activities are focusing on integrating the results of the public preference voting with the overall plan for the future of the site. The Voinovich School is part of a collaborative team engaged in a data-driven process to identify viable industries to target for site reuse and identify marketing tools aimed at potential future users at PORTS. Energy sector opportunities are explored in the white paper, Energy Sector Opportunities for the PORTS Campus (pdf). For more information on the PORTSfuture project site repurposing efforts, please visit: http://www.portsfuture.com/siterepurposing.aspx.

Webinar: OHIO Shale Policy & Technology Symposium Recap

This installment of the Shale Innovation Webinar Series, hosted by Ohio University on May 31, 2017, highlighted key policy research activities discussed at the OHIO Shale Policy & Technology Symposium in April. From understanding the industry's impacts on public infrastructure and regional communities to exploring best practices for leveraging economic contributions for wealth retention, researchers at Ohio University are on the front lines of studying the boom and bust cycles of regional oil and gas development. Our Ohio University panel was pleased to host Dana Saucier, Managing Director, Shale Energy & Petrochemical at JobsOhio, as a panelist. The webinar can be watched in full on our CE3 YouTube Channel at https://youtu.be/syz6jgvRLq8.

  • Moderator: Michael J. Zimmer, Executive in Residence, OHIO Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs. Mike Zimmer has been an Executive in Residence at the Voinovich School and Russ College of Engineering since 2007 and currently works with Ohio University on food, energy and water development issues; energy efficiency, technology and finance; and project management and public-private partnership development issues in the Appalachian region. A national expert on energy policy, corporate sustainability, clean tech transactions and finance, Mr. Zimmer has held many prestigious positions of leadership and counsel on behalf of trade associations, advisory groups and boards of directors across the energy landscape. He retired from Thompson Hine LLP and private law practice at the end of 2013 and continues in numerous research and consulting roles. He received his J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law.
  • Dana Saucier, Managing Director, Shale Energy & Petrochemical, JobsOhio. Dana Saucier is the managing director for Shale Energy & Petrochemicals and Agribusiness & Food Processing Industries at JobsOhio. He assists existing and new companies looking to expand in Ohio understand and leverage Ohio’s diverse energy markets and infrastructure. In addition, Mr. Saucier supports Ohio entrepreneurs seeking to create, launch, and grow new businesses in the state. Prior to joining JobsOhio, he spent more than 20 years in the energy industry with Accent Energy and Enron. He is a graduate of the University of Maine.
  • Dr. Daniel Karney, Assistant Professor, OHIO Department of Economics. Dr. Karney is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Economics at Ohio University. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2014. From 2004-2007, Dr. Karney worked at ICF International in Fairfax, VA as a consultant in energy and environmental policy. In 2004, Daniel received his B.A. in economics and mathematics from Grinnell College. Click here for Dr. Karney's presentation in .pdf.
  • Dr. Gilbert Michaud, Adjunct Assistant Professor & Cluster Analyst, OHIO Voinovich School. Dr. Michaud is an adjunct assistant professor and cluster analyst at the Ohio University Voinovich School. In this role, he conducts economic impact and feasibility studies, industry cluster analyses, program evaluations, and other research associated with Ohio University’s U.S. Economic Development Administration University Center and the Consortium for Energy, Economics & the Environment (CE3). Broadly, his research focuses on economic development and renewable energy policy. Previously, Dr. Michaud worked as an economics content author for Sapling Learning, Inc., as well as the lead researcher for the Energy & Power segment of U.S. Business Executive Journal. He holds a Ph.D. in public policy & administration from Virginia Commonwealth University. Click here for Dr. Michaud's presentation in .pdf.
  • Jonathan Norris, Researcher & MSES Candidate, OHIO Voinovich School. Jonathan Norris is a first-year candidate for a master of science in environmental studies. In 2014, he graduated from Ohio University with a degree in engineering technology and management. Mr. Norris then worked as a consulting engineer for an international consulting firm based in Cincinnati, OH. His research interests include energy policy, innovation systems, and the transition of communities that have been historically dependent on resource extraction toward sustainable, carbon-constrained, and economically-diverse futures. Click here for Mr. Norris's presentation in .pdf.

Please contact Elissa Welch at welche@ohio.edu with any questions or suggestions for future webinar topics.

ViewTogether Visualization

Information visualizations with multiple coordinated views enable users to rapidly explore complex data and discover relationships. ViewTogether is a tool for creating these coordinated views.

Ohio Real-Time Air Quality Mapping

The Ohio University Center for Air Quality housed at the Russ College of Engineering and Technology manages the only university-based air quality assessment “supersite” for monitoring SO2, particulates, mercury, ozone, CO2, CO, and NOX in Ohio. With more than $5 million in external research grants, the Center supports every metropolitan area in the state with modeling, monitoring and policy input data. Click here to see Ohio Real-Time Air Quality Mapping.

Research on the Reuse of CO2 Using Microalgae

The Ohio Coal Research Center and the Biofuels Lab, partnering with the Center for Air Quality's Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment (ISEE), has engaged in more than a decade of research on the reuse of CO2 using microalgae. With more than $2 million in funding from the Department of Energy, researchers have created bioreactor technologies to enhance the growth of microalgae from coal flue gas. Researchers are also developing technologies to convert the energy within the algae into biofuels, such as biodiesel and syngas.

U.S. EPA Mercury Monitoring

The Center was recently awarded a highly-competitive U.S. EPA mercury monitoring project through the National Atmospheric Deposition Program. The Center’s researchers, two full-time research staff and graduate students, are currently engaged in studying the fate of mercury emissions from local power plants, as well as worldwide sources, to understand the economic and environmental value of implementing control systems on local power plants. Click here to view a recent presentation.

Appalachian Housing Initiative Report

As part of a project funded by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency’s Office of Affordable Housing Research and Strategic Planning and the Governor’s Office of Appalachia, the Voinovich School in 2012 examined the ongoing impact of shale development on rental housing availability and cost and on homelessness in Carroll County and four contiguous counties. The findings show that demand for affordable housing has risen significantly. The influx of shale workers, limited availability of affordable housing in the county for residents, and housing per diems provided to temporary workers, have enabled rental market prices to climb. Additional factors have led to a strain on the existing housing infrastructure. The project is intended to help the Agency choose Ohio communities to monitor long-term. Click here for more information.

Webinar: Methane Regulations: Federal, State and Local Trends

On October 18, 2017, Ohio University hosted a Shale Innovation Project Webinar entitled, “Methane Regulation: Federal, State, and Local Trends.” Our expert panel of speakers covered the evolution and impact of methane regulations, the future of industry activity in response to regulation and other voluntary emissions reduction programs, and how policymakers can balance growth and environmental best practices. To view the speakers' presentations in .pdf, click on their names below.

The webinar is archived for viewing on the Voinovich School YouTube Channel here.

Shale Innovation Project

In 2016, the Voinovich School began work on the project “Preventing a Bust: Innovations for Sustainable & Enhanced Economic Outcomes from Shale,” an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Russ College of Engineering and Technology, the Voinovich School, and the College of Arts and Sciences to examine the impact of shale development on businesses and communities in Ohio’s shale region. Referred to as the Shale Innovation Project, this seven-pronged body of work in policy and technology is generously supported by a three-year Innovation Strategy Award from the Ohio University Research Division. In April 2017 and again in April 2018, Ohio University hosted OHIO Shale Policy & Technology Symposiums which convened oil and gas industry leaders, government agencies and officials, academic experts, and regional stakeholders to explore ways in which communities and businesses can achieve a balanced, durable and long-lasting regional energy future. More information about the 2018 Symposium can be found here. For more information and to stay apprised of related upcoming events, please contact Elissa Welch at welche@ohio.edu.

A New Energy Climate for Ohio Manufacturers

In late 2010, Ohio University hosted its third one-day workshop entitled, “A New Energy Climate for Ohio Manufacturers.” Ohio University partnered with The Ohio Manufacturers’ Association to present this series of workshops funded by Ohio EPA’s Environmental Education Fund. The goals of the workshops were to educate Ohio manufacturers on energy- and climate-related policies that may affect their operations, and explore the ways in which manufacturers can reduce energy costs and mitigate the effects of such policies on their operations and their bottom line. Click here to view the agendas from the three workshops.

Hazard Mitigation Planning Services

The CE3 Land Team provides hazard mitigation planning services. Hazard mitigation is a process that assists a community to reduce its risk of being negatively impacted by an unplanned event. The hazard may be natural such as a flood or tornado, a spill of hazardous materials, or a terrorist incident. Degree of risk is assessed and a series of options is provided that can help reduce that risk to varying degrees.

OHIO Campus Zero Waste Survey 2015

In Fall 2015, the OHIO Zero Waste Initiative at the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, in partnership with the Office of Sustainability and Campus Recycling, launched an electronic Campus Zero Waste Survey.  The purpose of the survey was to gauge attitudes and perceptions of waste reduction, recycling composting, and zero waste efforts on the Athens campus.  This survey was made possible the generosity of the Sugar Bush Foundation, supporting organization of the Ohio University Foundation, as part of the Appalachia Ohio Zero Waste Initiative. Click here to see the summary of the results in .pdf form. To view the full report in .pdf, click here. Please contact Elissa Welch, welche@ohio.edu with any questions regarding the research.

DynamicMap and Water Quality

Data User Interfaces Dynamic map is an interface designed to facilitate easier viewing and dynamic query sliders for the analysis of map-related water quality and biology data trends data.

Ohio Shale Development Community Impact Survey

In 2013-2014, the Voinovich School conducted the first of what is anticipated to be a longitudinal investigation of the impact of shale development activities on communities in eastern Ohio. The 2014 report was based on the results of surveys conducted with local officials across 17 Ohio counties. The findings included what types of shale development activities were being reported and how shale development has impacted local populations, housing, public safety, infrastructure, employment, environment and the local economy. To learn more about the project, click here. For more information, contact Jason Jolley at jolleyg1@ohio.edu.

Appalachian Watershed Research Group

Since 2001, the Appalachian Watershed Research Group (AWRG) has been a pioneer in acid mine drainage research and Appalachian water quality restoration, effectively reclaiming 47 miles of stream in the southeast Ohio region. Now, in partnership with Rural Action, a regional non-profit organization, the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs can expand the focus of the AWRG to include water quality improvement projects, education, and training in areas of water quality beyond acid mine drainage. With funding assistance from the United States EPA (USEPA), the formation of the Appalachian Ohio Clean Water Initiative will allow for the Voinovich School (spearheaded by the AWRG) and Rural Action to tackle complex, interdisciplinary water quality issues across the entire coal-bearing region of Ohio, while also providing education and training resources for affected community members and local school districts.

Comprehensive Land Use Plan Update

The GIS team worked with the Athens County Regional Planning Commission to provide the detailed mapping needed for a comprehensive land use plan update. Land use issues were identified with a corresponding mapping component. Key land use features that were mapped included: transportation infrastructure (rail, highway, bicycle, barge); natural hazards (landslip, flood, mine subsidence); utilities infrastructure (water, wastewater, major electric, major natural gas); demographics by township, village, and city; historic and cultural sites; critical facilities; watersheds; and government-owned property.

Laboratory for Sustainable Energy and Advanced Materials

The Laboratory for Sustainable Energy and Advanced Materials (SEAM Lab) has demonstrated expertise in the areas of alternative fuels, coal and biomass utilization, hydrogen technology, waste and drinking water treatment processes, polymerization and material compatibilization, supercritical fluid technology, and chemical process engineering and design. The laboratory is engaged in alternative clean liquid fuel synthesis via single stage dimethylether, waterless and sand-free fracking technology, enhanced oil and gas recovery technology, and advanced hydrogen generation using unconventional feedstocks such as crude ethanol beer, crude glycerin, mixed transportation fuels, and more. The laboratory is well equipped with state-of-the-art processing and analytical equipment for energy and environmental research.­ For more details, please visit our website at http://www.ohio.edu/people/lees1/altfuels.html.