Assistant Professor, Department of Ecosystem Science and Sustainability, Colorado State University
Ed Hall is a systems scientist working to understand how microorganisms control and constrain transformative processes in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. His research crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries, linking physical and ecological sciences and scales from single-cell microbiology to integrated watershed analyses of coupled human and natural systems.
Resident Fellowship Year: 2020-2021
Research Focus: Freshwater aquaculture, a potential sustainable solution to meet growing food demands, can have a substantial negative effect on surrounding freshwater ecosystems. Ed Hall will establish the first set of science-based sustainability standards to mitigate the impact of net-pen aquaculture on inland water ecosystems by examining aquaculture operations on Lake Yojoa, a large tropical lake in Honduras, Central America. He will work closely with several stakeholders: a major producer of tilapia, a large tilapia importer, and local watershed managers who work to mitigate the impact of human activities on the lake. By synthesizing legacy and contemporary datasets from Lake Yojoa, Hall will be able to assess the impact of aquaculture on the Lake Yojoa ecosystem and compare the impact of net-pen aquaculture with the impact of all other activities within the watershed. In concert with stakeholders mentioned above, Hall will work to establish a series of standards that can be applied industry wide to mitigate the impact of inland water aquaculture and create a more sustainable freshwater aquaculture industry. Hall’s time as a Resident Fellow will demonstrate the power of fundamental ecosystem science to create sustainability practices that have large societal benefits.
Sustainability Leadership Fellow Cohort: 2011-2012
Postdoctoral Fellow, USGS Medenhall Fellow
Research Summary: Natural ecosystems provide humans with innumerable services – clean drinking water, clean air, sufficient oxygen, high fish yields for consumption and sport fishing. As the human population grows from it‘s current size of 6 billion towards a projected 8 billion people over the next 40 years how will we ensure that these services are continuously provided to most if not all of the human population. My research helps us gain basic understanding of how elements are processed in the natural environment and in effect how ecosystem services are renewed and maintained. Defining these relationships will help us manage our ecosystem services under increasing anthropogenic demands.