UHCL professor receives grant to determine water quality

University of Houston-Clear Lake Associate Professor of Biology and Environmental Science George Guillen has been awarded $204,300 from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Environmental Protection Agency to study the water quality of the rivers and streams in Texas. Guillen serves as executive director of UH-Clear Lake’s Environmental Institute of Houston

Working with Environmental Institute of Houston scientists, graduate students and student interns, Guillen’s study will measure stream flow, water quality, habitat and biota of Texas streams and rivers to evaluate environmental conditions and whether there is a need for additional management or restoration including changes to water quality standards, criteria and regulations. This data will be used in a statewide and nationwide assessment of streams and rivers by EPA.

“Funding will be used to acquire new research equipment, support graduate student research and Environmental Institute of Houston scientists,” says Guillen. “The goal of this research is to characterize Texas stream fish and benthic invertebrate communities and their response to varying hydrology, urban development, water quality and habitat.”

Guillen and his team will follow the protocol set by the National Rivers and Streams Assessment and EPA to ensure that the results can be compared throughout the country. Their work will become part of a series of studies being conducted in order to evaluate the condition of the nation’s boatable rivers and wadeable streams.

“Data and results from this study will form the basis for the assessment of aquatic stream communities by the EPA and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality for both the National and Texas Rivers and Streams Assessment,” says Guillen.

UHCL’s Environmental Institute of Houston addresses environmental concerns regionally and across the state and has since become a leader in research, outreach, and education. For more information about the institute, visit http://www.eih.uhcl.edu or call 281-283-3950.

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University of Houston-Clear Lake offers more than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs, including a doctoral program, from its four schools, which include the School of Business, School of Education, School of Human Sciences and Humanities, and School of Science and Computer Engineering. In 2011, the university gained approval from the state to add freshman- and sophomore-level courses to its roster and is currently planning for its first freshman class in fall 2014. For more information about the university, visit http://www.uhcl.edu.

 

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