Ecological Assessment

Water sources are threatened by both point and nonpoint source pollutants. Studies of the chemical impacts of these pollutants on ecosystem health are made by the Center's researchers and can lead to best management practices for nonpoint source pollution control.

Potentially cancer-causing chemicals from nursery or industry runoff can be analyzed through their fate and transport through the soil. Center researchers are studying these characteristics to limit the effects of the chemicals on aquatic and human life. Wetlands perform the important functions of surface water storage, nutrient cycling, and pollutant and sediment trapping. Natural wetland systems are being classified based on hydrology, plant and animal ecology, and soil composition to develop functional assessment models for these ecosystems.


On August 16 and 17, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the Center sponsored a meeting to discuss relevant issues regarding wetlands in the State of Tennessee.  The topics included wetlands assessments, wetland delineation supplements, Army Corps of Engineers Mitigation Rules and Updates, the TDEC Anti-degradation Policy, water quality standards for wetlands, and the in-lieu fee program for (streams and wetlands).  Below are some of the presentations that were made during the workshop: 

Endangered Species Act Listing and Candidate Conservation  (PowerPoint file)
Nationwide Permits Reissuance  (PowerPoint file)
Antidegradation and Alternatives Analysis (PowerPoint file)
Eastern Mountains and Piedmont Regional Supplement (PowerPoint file)
Mitigation Options in Tennessee  (PDF file)
MYSO Mitigation in TN (PowerPoint file)
Petitioned Species in Tennessee (Excel file)
TDEC's Qualified Hydrologic Professional Certification Program (PowerPoint file)
Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation: What We Are and What We Do  (PowerPoint file)

The following are ecological assessment-related projects that were activated in the 2012-2013 fiscal year:

logo_ttualert Center Hill RCC Stability Berm Petrographic Examination
H. Wayne Leimer
Funding by:  AMEC Environmental and Infrastructure, Inc.  

 logo_ttualert Collecting Biological Data at TWRA Deer Check Stations
T.H. Roberts
Funding by: Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency

logo_ttualertGSE/RES Uncovering Tacit Knowledge about Gender, Communication
and Interpersonal Interactions in Engineering

E. Powell
Funding by:  Carnegie Mellon University

 logo_ttualertMonitoring Hydrologic and Vegetative Conditions at the Three River Mitigation Bank in Obion County
T.H. Roberts and K. Morgan
Funding by:  Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency 

 logo_ttualert Permit Compliance and Characterization of Wetland Mitigation Efforts in Tennessee
T.H. Roberts and K.L. Morgan
Funding by:  United States Environmental Protection Agency


  logo_ttualertHistoric Ecological Assessment Products