Cohort Level: Cohort - II
Career Goal: Emergency Management, NYC Government
Expected Graduation Date: December 27, 2022
Degree: PhD Earth & Environmental Sciences
Research Title: Mapping the Green Infrastructure Landscape and Green Gentrification in Brooklyn and Queens, New York
Research Synopsis: Water released from combined sewer outfalls (CSO) contains raw sewage, litter and large debris, organic material, nutrient loads, particulate matter, lipids/petrochemicals, and even pharmaceuticals. Storms increase stress on the NYC sewer system, contributing to increased CSO discharge into open water.
Exploratory research on CSO overflow volume changes from 2006 to 2016 will be used as an empirical framework to promote planning for adaptability to storms, and climate and weather stressors, including creating public warning and public education strategies for before, during, and after inclement weather. Preliminary research was conducted to analyze the trends of CSO discharge in Brooklyn and Queens following city initiatives to reduce CSO volume. Goals of the NOAA-CESSRST initiative to integrate social sciences into research and education training include “defining and measuring the impact of NOAA and CESSRST research products on society, [as] well as how the research supports societal decision making” with regard to Decision Science, Risk Assessment, and Risk Communication. For these elements, a critical human health geography desk study is being undertaken.
Issues that may affect health, safety, and quality of life and require public warning are: safety during rain events, safe recreation strategies in precarious waters, avoiding physical dangers of CSO discharge safe consumption of fishes caught from bodies of water surrounding New York City and/or affected by CSO overflow. This includes recreational and subsistence and requests for volunteer maintenance, i.e., clearing clogged sewer grates
These public warning strategies can be extrapolated to other necessary warnings, including, but not limited to, increasing understanding of weather forecasts, preparation for extreme weather events, and community emergency preparedness. Safe interaction with water bodies may increase quality of life in New York City.