Tag Archives: Connecticut River

Feet to the Fire Meeting


From Sewon Kang ’14: 

Feet to the Fire does more than give you a free t-shirt during orientation. F2F is a committee made up of faculty, staff, students, and community members, and it’s being totally revamped! Instead of discussing environmentalism-related programming and events, we want to experiment with the idea of having the committee be programming creators. We want to reach our goals by developing creative outputs that contextualize F2F, communicate SAGES initiatives, and make F2F the culture creator on campus around environmentalism.

At this upcoming info session/meeting, we will be discussing the details of what is meant by “creative outputs” as well as three pilot projects we will focus on for 2014-2015:

  1. increasing composting on campus and in Middletown
  2. promoting the Wes to Wes initiative
  3. bringing awareness to the Connecticut River.

Email skang(at)wesleyan(dot)edu if you have any questions or want to attend the info session on Wednesday, November 13 at 4:15pm at the Downey House lounge.

Date: Wednesday, November 13th, 2013
Time: 4:15 PM
Place: Downey House Lounge (294 High Street)
Cost: FREE

Wes Research Team Finds High Mercury Levels in CT River

If you see Johan Varekamp today, give him a high-five and/or fist bump of your choice: the Wesleyan earth science professor and geochemist just led a research team that discovered an estimated more than 500 pounds of mercury in Wethersfield Cove on the Connecticut River. And here you thought earth science professors just sat around classifying rocks all day. (That’s just all night.)

Also included in the research team were Wesleyan grad students Kristen Amore, Luis Rodriguez, and Julia Rowny.

Professor Varekamp presents his findings (working title: “Wethersfield Cove: A 300 Year Urban Pollution Record”) this week at the Geological Society of America’s annual meeting on Minneapolis. According to Courant coverage, Varekamp compares his research to CSI investigation:

Varekamp, a tall, bearded, genial man, likens his studies of sediments in Long Island Sound and the Connecticut River to crime scene investigation. It was his sleuthing 10 years ago that traced mercury pollution in the Housatonic River to historic Danbury hat factories. In Wethersfield Cove, the Wesleyan professor believes high mercury levels are also linked to past industry – in this case an experimental electrical generating station that used mercury vapor turbines to produce power.