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Ecohydrology @ Marquette

Our research integrates experimental data, theory, and models to study interactions between hydrology and ecosystems. We apply this understanding to solve ecological engineering problems, such as the design of urban water systems to protect water quality.

 

Research

 

Here are our current research topics.

Green roof at Engineering Hall, Marquette University.

Green roof at Engineering Hall, Marquette University.

Soil biogeochemistry in engineered ecosystems

Nutrients like Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorus (P) are crucial to growing food and keeping lawns green. However, N and P pollution of surface waters is one of the costliest water quality issues faced in the United States. To address this problem, farms and cities use engineered ecosystems, called green infrastructure, designed to remove N, P, and other pollutants from stormwater runoff. We study the hydrologic controls on N and P cycling in these ecosystems to inform design practices for improved nutrient management.

Support: Fund for Lake Michigan, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District

 

Watershed hydrology and smart stormwater systems

Urbanization alters watershed hydrology by reducing infiltration into soils and increasing stormwater runoff. Increased stormwater runoff leads to flooding, rapid pollutant transport to urban streams, and erosion - negative impacts that need to be mitigated through design of urban water systems. We study urban landscapes and water systems from a number of perspectives, including the role of soil on runoff production and “smart” real-time control technologies to optimize system performance.

Support: Water Equipment & Policy Industry-University Cooperative Research Center

Representative publications:

Stewart, R.D., A.S. Bhaskar, A.J. Parolari, D.L. Herrmann, J.Jian, L.A. Schifman, and W.D. Shuster (2019). An analytical approach to ascertain saturation-excess versus infiltration-excess overland flow in urban and reference landscapes. Hydrological Processes, doi:10.1002/hyp.13562.

Sharior, S., W. McDonald, and A.J. Parolari (2019). Improved reliability of stormwater detention basin performance through water quality data-informed real-time control. Journal of Hydrology, 573, 422-431. doi:10.1016/j.jhydrol.2019.03.012.

Parolari, A. J., Pelrine, S., & Bartlett, M. S. (2018). Stochastic water balance dynamics of passive and controlled stormwater basins. Advances in Water Resources, 122, 328-339, doi:10.1016/j.advwatres.2018.10.016.

Bartlett, M.S., A.J. Parolari, J.J. McDonnell, and A. Porporato (2016) Framework for event-based semi-distributed modeling that unifies the SCS-CN method, VIC, PDM, and TOPMODEL. Water Resources Research, 52(9), 7036-7052, doi:10.1002/2016WR19084.

 
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Ecohydrology: climate variability and ecosystem structure and function

Climate, and its influence on soil water availability, is arguably the most important driver of the density and diversity of plants found in ecosystems. Interactions between plants and water play a central role in the energy, water, and carbon cycles, which we rely on to grow food and maintain a habitable climate. To improve quantitative models that forecast critical earth system functions such as water availability and agricultural productivity, we study how rainfall variability at daily, seasonal, and inter-annual scales impacts ecosystem structure and function. Two of our main interests are grassland productivity and seasonally-dry tropical forest structure.

Representative publications:

Parolari, A.J., K. Paul, A. Griffing, R. Condit, R. Perez, S. Aguilar, and S. Schnitzer (in press). Liana abundance and diversity increase with rainfall seasonality along a precipitation gradient in Panama. Ecography, doi:10.1111/ecog.04678.

Parolari, A.J. and A. Paschalis (in review). Precipitation variability can bias estimates of ecological controls on ecosystem productivity response to precipitation change.

Schwantes, A.M., Parolari, A.J., Swenson, J.J., Johnson, D.M., Domec, J.C., Jackson, R.B., Pelak, N. and Porporato, A., 2018. Accounting for landscape heterogeneity improves spatial predictions of tree vulnerability to drought. New Phytologist, 220(1), 132-146, doi:10.1111/nph.15274.

Liu, Y., A.J. Parolari, M. Kumar, C.W. Huang, G.G. Katul, and A. Porporato (2017) Increasing atmospheric humidity and CO2 concentration alleviate forest mortality risk. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1704811114.

 

People

 
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Anthony J. Parolari, PHD

I am a hydrologist and civil engineer by training with research interests in the role of water in ecosystems, particularly engineered ecosystems like agriculture and green infrastructure. My research develops quantitative models that link hydrologic variability to ecosystem processes, including plant productivity and soil biogeochemistry. I also study the social-ecological feedbacks that drive human interaction with the water cycle. These models are used to advance theory and to interpret empirical data, which improves basic understanding of ecosystem dynamics that can be leveraged to solve engineering and control problems.


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students

We are looking for talented and motivated graduate students to join our team. Information regarding the Masters and PhD graduate programs in Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering at Marquette can be found here and here. Please feel free to contact me directly with questions or interest.

 
LAINE HAVENS / MS  Soil moisture and redox dynamics in green infrastructure

LAINE HAVENS / MS
Soil moisture and redox dynamics in green infrastructure

THUY LAM / PhD  Salt dynamics and hydraulic performance of green infrastructure

THUY LAM / PhD
Salt dynamics and hydraulic performance of green infrastructure

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ISABELLE HORVATH / MS  Soil moisture and nutrient cycling in green infrastructure

ISABELLE HORVATH / MS
Soil moisture and nutrient cycling in green infrastructure

KAMILA TURCZEWSKI / UG  Climate change and runoff generation

KAMILA TURCZEWSKI / UG
Climate change and runoff generation


ALUMNI

Graduate students

Sazzad Sharior

Degree

MS 2019

Current position

PhD student, UT Austin

Undergraduate students

Mark Gesior
Kassandra Paul
Steven Pelrine
Joseph Sizemore
Jeffrey Strasser
Olivia Wycklendt

teaching

I teach courses in hydraulic engineering (undergraduate), urban hydrology and stormwater management (undergraduate/graduate), modeling in water resources engineering (graduate), ecohydrology (graduate), and environmental fate and transport (undergraduate/graduate). My current teaching schedule is:

Spring 2019:

  • CEEN1210 Introduction to Computing, Analysis, Design, and Communication

  • CEEN3210 Hydraulic Engineering

Fall 2019:

  • CEEN4230/5230 Urban Hydrology & Stormwater Management

  • CEEN6350 Modeling in Water Resources Engineering

Previous courses:

  • CEEN4560/5560 Environmental Fate & Transport

  • CEEN6932 Ecohydrology

  • Optimal Environmental Sensing

  • Duke Research Integration Voyage for Engineers

 

Publications

See a full list of publications and citations here.         

  1. Parolari, A.J., K. Paul, A. Griffing, R. Condit, R. Perez, S. Aguilar, and S. Schnitzer (in press). Liana abundance and diversity increase with rainfall seasonality along a precipitation gradient in Panama. Ecography, doi:10.1111/ecog.04678.

  2. Stewart, R.D., A.S. Bhaskar, A.J. Parolari, D.L. Herrmann, J.Jian, L.A. Schifman, and W.D. Shuster (2019). An analytical approach to ascertain saturation-excess versus infiltration-excess overland flow in urban and reference landscapes. Hydrological Processes, doi:10.1002/hyp.13562.

  3. Sharior, S., W. McDonald, and A.J. Parolari (2019). Improved reliability of stormwater detention basin performance through water quality data-informed real-time control. Journal of Hydrology, 573, 422-431. doi:10.1016/j.jhydrol.2019.03.012.

  4. Parolari, A. J., Pelrine, S., and Bartlett, M. S. (2018). Stochastic water balance dynamics of passive and controlled stormwater basins. Advances in Water Resources, 122, 328-339, doi:10.1016/j.advwatres.2018.10.016.

  5. Schwantes, A.M., Parolari, A.J., Swenson, J.J., Johnson, D.M., Domec, J.C., Jackson, R.B., Pelak, N. and Porporato, A. (2018). Accounting for landscape heterogeneity improves spatial predictions of tree vulnerability to drought. New Phytologist, 220(1), 132-146, doi:10.1111/nph.15274.

  6. Calabrese, S., A.J. Parolari, and A. Porporato (2017) Hydrologic transport of dissolved inorganic carbon and its control on chemical weathering. Journal of Geophysical Research - Earth Surface, doi:10.1002/2017JF004346.

  7. Liu, Y., A.J. Parolari, M. Kumar, C.W. Huang, G.G. Katul, and A. Porporato (2017) Increasing atmospheric humidity and CO2 concentration alleviate forest mortality risk. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi:10.1073/pnas.1704811114.

  8. Parolari, A.J., M.L. Mobley, A.R. Bacon, G.G. Katul, D. deB. Richter, and A. Porporato (2017) Boom and bust carbon-nitrogen dynamics during reforestation. Ecological Modelling, 360, 108-119, doi:10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2017.06.023.

  9. Bartlett, M.S., A.J. Parolari, J.J. McDonnell, and A. Porporato (2017) Reply to Comment on "Beyond the SCS-CN method: A theoretical framework for spatially lumped rainfall-runoff response." Water Resources Research, doi:10.1002/2017WR020456.

  10. Huang, C.W., J.C. Domec, T. Duman, G. Manoli, A.J. Parolari, and G.G. Katul (2017) The role of plant water storage on water fluxes within the coupled soil-plant system. New Phytologist, doi:10.111/nph.14273.

  11. Parolari, A.J., D. Li, E. Bou-Zeid, G.G. Katul, and S. Assouline (2016) Climate, not conflict, explains extreme Middle East dust storm. Environmental Research Letters, 11(11), 114013, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/11/11/114013.

  12. Bartlett, M.S., A.J. Parolari, J.J. McDonnell, and A. Porporato (2016) Framework for event-based semi-distributed modeling that unifies the SCS-CN method, VIC, PDM, and TOPMODEL. Water Resources Research, 52(9), 7036-7052, doi:10.1002/2016WR19084.

  13. Bartlett, M.S., A.J. Parolari, J.J. McDonnell, and A. Porporato (2016), Beyond the SCS-CN method: A theoretical framework for spatially lumped rainfall-runoff response. Water Resources Research, 52(6), 4608-4627, doi:10.1002/2015WR018439.

  14. Parolari, A.J. and A. Porporato (2016), Forest soil carbon and nitrogen cycles under biomass harvest: stability, transient response, and feedback. Ecological Modelling, 329, 64-76, doi:10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2016.03.003.

  15. Pelak, N.F., A.J. Parolari, and A. Porporato (2016), Bistable plant-soil dynamics and biogenic controls on the soil production function. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, doi:10.1002/esp.3878.

  16. Bartlett, M.S., E. Daly, J.J. McDonnell, A.J. Parolari, and A. Porporato (2015), Stochastic rainfall-runoff model with explicit soil moisture dynamics. Proceedings of the Royal Society A, 471, 20150389, doi:10.1098/rspa.2015.0389.

  17. Porporato, A., X. Feng, S. Manzoni, Y. Mau, A.J. Parolari, and G. Vico (2015), Ecohydrological modeling in agroecosystems: examples and challenges. Water Resources Research, 51(7), 5081-5099, doi:10.1002/2015WR017289.

  18. Parolari, A.J., G.G. Katul, and A. Porporato (2015), The Doomsday Equation and 50 years beyond: new perspectives on the human-water system. WIREs Water, 2(4), 407-414, doi:10.1002/wat2.1080.

  19. Parolari, A.J., M.L. Goulden, and R.L. Bras (2015), Ecohydrological controls on grass and shrub above-ground net primary productivity in a seasonally dry climate. Ecohydrology, 8(8), 1572-1583, doi:10.1002/eco.1605.

  20. Parolari, A.J., G.G. Katul, and A. Porporato (2014), An ecohydrological perspective on drought-induced forest mortality, Journal of Geophysical Research Biogeosciences, 119, 1-17, doi:10.1002/2013JG002592.

  21. Parolari, A.J., M.L. Goulden, and R.L. Bras (2012), Fertilization effects on the ecohydrology of a southern California annual grassland, Geophysical Research Letters, 39, L08405, doi:10.1029/2012GL051411. (Open access at: DSpace@MIT)

  22. Bain, D.J., M.B. Green, J.L. Campbell, et al. (2012), Legacy Effects in Material Flux: Structural Catchment Changes Predate Long-Term Studies. BioScience, 62(6), 575-584, doi:10.1525/bio.2012.62.6.8. (Open access at: DSpace@MIT)

  23. Pastore, C.L., M.B. Green, D.J. Bain, et al. (2010), Tapping environmental history to recreate America's colonial hydrology. Environmental Science and Technology, 44(23), 8798-8803, doi:10.1021/es102672c.

  24. Parolari, Anthony. The nitrogen cycle and ecohydrology of seasonally dry grasslands. Ph.D. Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2012. (DSpace@MIT)