water drop

People

Core Faculty

Trent BiggsTrent W. Biggs, Ph.D.
Professor, Geography
College of Arts and Letters
Email: [email protected]

Trent Biggs' research interests include the impacts of land use on hydrology, water quality, and sediment.  Dr Biggs and his students use satellite imagery, fieldwork, and modeling to diagnose and analyze water-related problems that impact the environment and human welfare.  His field locations include American Samoa, southern India, the Himalaya, and the US-Mexico border region.  Most recently he and a team of students have analyzed the environmental consequences of urbanization on the US-Mexico border, with an emphasis on the origins of sediment that has damaged local estuaries.

Featured Publications

Biggs, T. W., Petropoulos, G. P., Velpuri, N. M., Marshall, M. T., Glenn, E. P., Nagler, P. L., & Messina, A. T. (in press). Remote Sensing of Evapotranspiration from Cropland. In Handbook of Remote Sensing. Wiley & Sons.

Biggs, T. W., Lai, C.-T., Chandan, P., Lee, R. M., Messina, A., Lesher, R. S., & Khatoon, N. (2015). Evaporative fractions and elevation effects on stable isotopes of high elevation lakes and streams in arid western Himalaya. Journal of Hydrology, 522(0), 239–249.

Lee, R. M., & Biggs, T. W. (2014). Impacts of land use, climate variability, and management on thermal structure, anoxia, and transparency in hypereutrophic urban water supply reservoirs. Hydrobiologia, 1–22.

Biggs, T. W., Gangadhara Rao, P., & Bharati, L. (2010). Mapping agricultural responses to water supply shocks in large irrigation systems, southern India. Agricultural Water Management, 97(6), 924–932.

Biggs, T. W., Atkinson, E., Powell, R., & Ojeda-Revah, L. (2010). Land cover following rapid urbanization on the US-Mexico border: Implications for conceptual models of urban watershed processes. Landscape and Urban Planning, 96(2), 78–87

 

Christy M. DykstraChristy M. Dykstra, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering
Email: [email protected]

Christy Dykstra's research focuses on energy and nutrient recovery from wastewater. She uses bioelectrochemical systems (BESs) to "recycle" wastewater-derived carbon dioxide into methane for energy recovery, as well as to recover nutrients from wastewater in the form of struvite, a slow-release fertilizer. Her research develops new systems for energy and nutrient recovery, and investigates the associated bioelectrochemical processes and microbial communities.

 

Temesgen GaromaTemesgen Garoma, Ph.D.
Professor, Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering
Email: [email protected]

Temesgen Garoma is a Professor of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering. The emphasis of his research and teaching is on water and wastewater treatment, resource recovery, and renewable energy. His current research is focused on biofuels and bioproducts production from algal biomass, resource recovery from wastewater, and integration of wastewater treatment with energy production. In the past, he has worked on research projects that focused on the application of advanced oxidation processes, e.g. ozone/UV, ozone/H2O2, and H2O2/Fenton and on the formation of disinfection byproducts during ozonation and chlorination of drinking water and wastewater effluents.

Featured Publications

Garoma, T.; Janda, D. 2016. Investigation of the effects of microalgal cell concentration and electroporation, microwave and ultrasonication on lipid extraction efficiency. Renewable Energy 86,117–123.

Garoma, T.; Nguyen, D. 2015. Anaerobic Co-digestion of Microalgae Scenedesmus sp. and TWAS for Biomethane Production. Water Environment Research doi:10.2175/WERD1400167.1

Garoma, T.; Shackelford, T. 2014. Electroporation of Chlorella vulgaris to enhance biomethane production. Bioresource Technology 169, 778-783.

Garoma, T.; Williams, C. 2013. Enhanced anaerobic digestion as a sanitation and energy recovery technology. Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development 4, 572-581.

Liu, X.; Garoma, T.; Chen, Z.; Wang, L.; Wu, Y. 2012. SMX degradation by ozonation and UV radiation: A kinetic study. Chemosphere 87, 1134-1140.

 

Richard M. GersbergRichard Gersberg, Ph.D.
Professor, Environmental Health Division Head, Public Health
College of Health and Human Services
Email: [email protected]

Richard M. Gersberg is currently a Professor (and Head of the Division) of Environmental Health in the Graduate School of Public Health at San Diego State University (SDSU). He has an M.S. degree in biology and a Ph.D degree in environmental microbiology from the University of California, Davis. Dr. Gersberg specializes in water quality research, and has broad experience with both drinking water and wastewater treatment, constructed wetlands for water purification, and ecological and human health risk assessments for chemicals of concern. Dr. Gersberg has conducted a number of studies on the detection, quantitation, and risk posed by metals, viruses, pesticides, and pharmaceuticals and person care products in aquatic systems all over the world including the Venice Lagoon, Italy, the Salton Sea, California and the Elbe River, Germany.  He is currently a member of the Independent Advisory Panel for two indirect potable reuse projects in the region- the City of San Diego’s Water Purification Demonstration Project and Padre Dam Municipal Water District’s Full Advanced Water Treatment (FAT) Demonstration Project.

Featured Publications

Zhang,  D., Hua, T., Xiao, F., Chen, C., Gersberg, R.M., Liu, Y., Stuckey, D., Ng, W.J. and S.K. Tan. 2015. Phytotoxicity and bioaccumulation of ZnO nanoparticles in Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani. Chemosphere 120:211-9.

Zhang,  D.Q., Jinadasa, K.B., Gersberg, R.M., Liu, Y., Ng, W.J. and Tan S.K. 2014. Application of constructed wetlands for wastewater treatment in developing countries--a review of recent developments (2000-2013). J. Environ. Manage. 141: 116-31.

Stigler-Granados, P., Quintana, P.J.E., Gersberg, R., Zuniga, M.L., and T Novotny. 2014. Comparing health outcomes and point-of-use water quality in two rural indigenous communities of Baja California, Mexico before and after receiving new potable water infrastructure. J. Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Develop. 4: 672-680.

Zhang, D.Q., Tao, H., Xiao, F., Chen, C., Gersberg, R.M., Liu, Y., Ng, W.J. and S.K. Tan. 2014. Uptake and accumulation of CuO nanoparticles and CdS/ZnS quantum dot nanoparticles by Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani in hydroponic mesocosms. Ecological Engineering 09; 70:114–123.

Zhang, D.Q., Gersberg, R.M., Ng, W.J. and S.K. Tan. 2014. Removal of pharmaceuticals and personal care products in aquatic plant-based systems: a review. Environ Pollut.: 184:620-39.

 

Eunha HohEunha Hoh, Ph.D.
Professor, Environmental Health Division Head, Public Health
College of Health and Human Services
Email: [email protected]

Eunha Hoh’s research interests focus on the investigation of diverse environmental pollutants in the environment and their impact on human health. Most of her work involves the application of chromatography and mass spectrometry. Dr. Hoh developed a nontargeted analytical approach for detection of a broad range of organic chemicals in various environmental samples. She is working on further development of the nontargeted analytical approach and its application towards chemical analysis of treated water and surface water.

 

Alicia KinoshitaAlicia Kinoshita, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering
Email: [email protected]

Alicia Kinoshita investigates the disturbance of natural watershed processes to improve the prediction and management of hydrologic fluxes. She incorporates field data, remote sensing products, and modeling to evaluate the response and recovery of impacted watersheds. Her research primarily focuses on post-fire hydrology water quality, vegetation recovery, and long-term flow regimes.

Featured Publications

Florsheim, J. L., Chin, A., Kinoshita, A. M., and Nourbakhshbeidokhti, S.* (2017) Effect of storms during drought on post-wildfire recovery of channel sediment dynamics and habitat in the southern California chaparral, USA. Earth Surf. Process. Landforms, doi: 10.1002/esp.4117.

Kinoshita, A. M., Chin, A., Simon, G. L., Briles, C., Hogue, T. S., O’Dowd, A. P. O'Dowd, A. K. Gerlak, & Albornoz, A. U. (2016). Wildfire, Water, and Society: Toward Integrative Research in the “Anthropocene”. Anthropocene, 16, 16-27.

Kinoshita, A.M. & Hogue, T. S. (2015). Increased dry season water yield in burned watersheds in southern California. Environmental Research Letters 10(1). DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/10/1/014003.

Kinoshita, A. M., Hogue, T. S., & Napper, C. (2014). Evaluating Pre‐and Post‐Fire Peak Discharge Predictions across Western US Watersheds. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 50(6), 1540-1557. DOI: 10.1111/jawr.12226.

Kinoshita, A.M., Hogue, T.S., Napper C. (2013). A guide for pre- and post-fire modeling and application in the Western U.S. General Technical Report (GTR), USDA Forest Service.

Kinoshita, A. M., Hogue, T. S., Barco, J., & Wessel, C. (2013). Chemical flushing from an urban-fringe watershed: hydrologic and riparian soil dynamics. Environmental Earth Sciences, 1-11. DOI: 10.1007/s12665-013-3011-x.

Burke, M. P., Hogue, T. S., Kinoshita, A. M., Barco, J., Wessel, C., & Stein, E. D. (2013). Pre-and post-fire pollutant loads in an urban fringe watershed in Southern California. Environmental monitoring and assessment, 185(12), 10131-10145. DOI: 10.1007/s10661-013-3318-9.

Stein, E. D., Brown, J. S., Hogue, T. S., Burke, M. P., & Kinoshita, A. (2012). Stormwater contaminant loading following southern California wildfires. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 31(11), 2625-2638. DOI: 10.1002/etc.1994.

 

Hilary McMillanHilary McMillan, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Geography
College of Arts and Letters
Email: [email protected]

Hilary McMillan investigates how large-scale watershed hydrology dynamics arise from multiscale water interactions with soils, plants, people and landscape. Her research has included developing public and commercial hydrologic models to forecast river flow and floods, and conducting fieldwork in environments from pristine mountain watersheds to high-yield agricultural regions. In the San Diego area, Hilary and her students are using methods such as hydrologic process mapping and water isotope tracking, to discover how humans alter watershed dynamics in urban areas.

Featured Publications

McMillan, H., (2020). Linking hydrologic signatures to hydrologic processes: A review. Hydrological Processes. 34: 1393– 1409. https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13632

Branger, F, McMillan, H., (2020). Deriving hydrological signatures from soil moisture data. Hydrological Processes. 34: 1410– 1427. https://doi.org/10.1002/hyp.13645

McMillan, H., Seibert, J., Petersen-Overleir, A., et al. (2017). How uncertainty analysis of streamflow data can reduce costs and promote robust decisions in water management applications. Water Resources Research 53, 5220–5228. https://doi.org/10.1002/2016WR020328

de Boer‐Euser, T., McMillan, H., Hrachowitz, M., Winsemius, H. C., Savenije, H. H. (2016). Influence of soil and climate on root zone storage capacity. Water Resources Research 52, 2009–2024. https://doi.org/10.1002/2015WR018115

McMillan, H., Booker, D.J., Cattoën, C., (2016). Validation of a national hydrological model. Journal of Hydrology. 51 (b): 800:815. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2016.07.043

 

Natalie MladenovNatalie Mladenov, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering
Email: [email protected]

Natalie Mladenov's research is motivated by the increasing importance of protecting and restoring surface water and ground water quality in the face of water scarcity.  Her research probes the fundamental processes that drive the cycling of carbon and nutrients and influence the mobility of contaminants in aquatic ecosystems. She is also passionate about promoting internationalization in engineering research and education on topics related related to water, sanitation, and water reuse.

Featured Publications

N. Mladenov, Y. Zheng, B. Simone, T. M. Bilinski, D. M. McKnight, D. Nemergut, K. A. Radloff, M. M. Rahman, and K. M. Ahmed. 2015. "Dissolved Organic Matter Quality in a Shallow Aquifer of Bangladesh: Implications for Arsenic Mobility" Environmental Science & Technology, DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.5b01962.

J. Rüegg, J. J. Eichmiller, N. Mladenov, and W. K. Dodds. 2015. "Dissolved organic carbon concentration and flux in prairie streams: spatial and temporal patterns and processes from long-term data." Biogeochemistry, Published online first: DOI 10.1007/s10533-015-0134-z.

N. Mladenov, D.M. McKnight, S.A. Macko, M. Norris, R.M. Cory, and L. Ramberg. 2007. “Chemical characterization of DOM in channels of a seasonal wetland.”  Aquatic Sciences, 69(4): 456-471, DOI: 10.1007/s00027-007-0905-2.

N. Mladenov, D.M. McKnight, P. Wolski, and M. Murray-Hudson. 2007. “Simulation of DOM fluxes in a seasonal floodplain of the Okavango Delta, Botswana” Ecological Modelling, 205: 181-195.

N. Mladenov, K.M. Strzepek, and O.M. Serumola. 2005. “Water Quality Modeling of an Effluent-Dominated Stream, the Notwane River, Botswana.”  Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, Vol. 109/1-3: 97-121.

Amy QuandtAmy Quandt, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Geography
College of Arts and Letters
Email: [email protected] 
Website

I am an environmental social scientist and human ecologist in the Department of Geography.  My work addresses issues of environmental conservation, sustainable development, and building livelihood resilience to the impacts of climate change. Recent research projects have focused on agroforestry in East Africa and the use of mobile technology in agricultural development, and understanding local perceptions of drought and climate change.  I have spent 5 years living and working in East Africa working with international organizations that place an importance on grassroots movements and local participation including the World Agroforestry Centre, Kenya Red Cross Society, Peace Corps Tanzania, and USAID, and I am fluent in Swahili.  Lastly, I am working in Imperial County, California to better understand farmer decision-making in the face of recent environmental, economic, and policy changes.

Featured Publications

Quandt, A. 2021. Coping with drought: narratives from smallholder farmers in semi-arid Kenya. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction 57: 102168. doi: 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2021.102168.

QuandtA., Salerno, J., Neff, J., Baird, T. Herrick, J., McCabe, J. T., Xu, E., and J. Hartter. 2020. Mobile phone use is associated with higher smallholder agricultural productivity in Tanzania, East Africa. PLoS ONE 15(8): e0237337. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0237337.

Quandt, A., Herrick, J., Peacock, G., Salley, S., Buni, A., Mkalawa, C., and J. Neff. 2020. A standardized land capability classification system for land evaluation using mobile phone technology. Journal of Soil and Water Conservation 75(3): 1-11. doi:10.2489/jswc.2020.00023.

Quandt, A. and A. Kimathi. 2017.  Perceptions of the effects of floods and droughts on livelihoods: lessons from arid Kenya. International Journal of Climate Change Strategies  and Mitigation 9(3): 337-351. doi: 10.1108/IJCCSM-11-2014-0132

Kari SantKari Sant, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Environmental Health Division, Public Health
College of Health and Human Services
Email: [email protected]

Kari Sant is a toxicologist who investigates the health consequences resulting from developmental exposures to common drinking water pollutants. Most of her research has examined how exposures to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) affect embryonic and juvenile development, and predispose to metabolic diseases such as diabetes and kidney dysfunction later in life. She currently uses the zebrafish model to investigate how emerging surface and drinking water contaminants influence both human and marine reproduction and health throughout the lifespan.

 

Hassan Tavakol-DavaniHassan Tavakol-Davani, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering
Email: [email protected]

Hassan Tavakol-Davani is an Assistant Professor at the SDSU Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering, specialized in water resources and hydraulic simulation. All his experience in academia and industry has focused on application of advanced computational techniques to discover sustainable methods to face emerging water resources and flooding challenges, in a changing world. He has presented his research in +20 conferences in +10 different countries. In addition, he has published 7 peer-reviewed papers in top tier journals, including Elsevier and ASCE publications. He serves a committee member for two ASCE committees: International Participation Committee, and Urban Water Resources Committee.

Kathryn ThorbjarnarsonKathryn Thorbjarnarson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Geological Sciences
College of Sciences
Email: [email protected] 

Kathryn Thorbjarnarson’s research in hydrogeology includes modeling and assessment of groundwater fluxes and water quality.  Past studies have included groundwater flow in wetlands, modeling of treated wastewater injection in small fractured bedrock groundwater basin, assessment of aquifer heterogeneities by tracers and impacts of geology on geochemistry of springs in the local mountains.

 

Matthew E. VerbylaMatthew E. Verbyla, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
College of Engineering 
Email: [email protected] 

Matthew E. Verbyla directs research at the Safe WaTER Lab at SDSU, which seeks to better understand the health-related microbiological processes in engineered natural systems and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) systems, especially those that incorporate water reuse and resource recovery. His research focuses on the fate, transport, and detection of pathogens and pathogen surrogates in wastewater systems and the environment, quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA), microbial source tracking (MST), and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WaSH) for development.

 

Matthew WeingartenMatthew Weingarten, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Geological Sciences
College of Sciences
Email: [email protected]

Matthew Weingarten's research in hydrogeology includes numerical modeling and optimization techniques in the analysis of groundwater flow. His research aims to understand how fractures and faults effect groundwater flow and saltwater intrusion at the basin-scale as well as probe how anthropogenic sources have perturbed ambient hydrogeologic conditions at depth.

Additional Faculty

Paul Ganster, Ph.D.
Institute for Regional Studies of the Californias 
Email: [email protected]

Jillian Maloney, Ph.D.
Geological Sciences
Email: [email protected]