The heat is on across N.J. Will records be set?

If you’re drenched with sweat when you’re walking or working outside on Friday, just remember how bad it was exactly five years ago. That’s when New Jersey was sweltering through a brutal summer heat wave, and the mercury on July 22 climbed to a record-shattering 108 degrees at Newark Liberty International Airport… That was, and still is, the hottest temperature on record in Newark and just two degrees shy of the highest temperature ever recorded anywhere in the Garden State – 110 degrees, according to New Jersey State Climatologist David Robinson at Rutgers University.

Read the entire article at The Star Ledger »

Americans support GMO food labels, don’t know much about safety

Americans widely support the mandatory labeling of genetically modified foods, which is required in a bill approved by Congress on July 14 and sent to the White House to await President Obama’s signature… William Hallman, a 2016-17 visiting scholar at the Annenberg Public Policy Center and professor of the Department of Human Ecology at Rutgers University, noted that while nearly 60 percent of Americans reported having only a fair or poor understanding of GMOs, the new labeling law might ultimately change this if consumers are willing to use QR codes to find out more about the products they buy.

Read the entire article at Ag Professional »

New peach and nectarine varieties help Eastern growers compete

Peach growers and shippers in the Northeast who market to large retailers are seeing increasing competition from shippers in California, Georgia, South Carolina and even countries in the Southern Hemisphere… Traditionally, the market has hung its hat on yellow-fleshed peaches, said Jerry Frecon, a Rutgers University emeritus professor  ‘said there are plenty of new peaches and nectarines being developed. Many in the Mid-Atlantic states are coming from Rutgers University’s Tree Fruit Breeding Program, under the direction of plant biology and pathology professor Joseph Goffreda, at Cream Ridge, New Jersey.

Read the entire article at Good Fruit Grower »

How to make a yummy, consistent beer: Rutgers team is on a mission

There’s a lot of science that goes into making a tasty beer. But not all brewers and hop farmers — especially the small ones — have access to the tools and information they need to arrive at the perfect product… “What we really wanted to do was try to respond to what breweries and growers were asking of Rutgers,” said Jim Simon, principal investigator of the project. “They were asking: how do we position ourselves to level the playing field, to try to get the same type of information that some of the big breweries have?”

Read the entire article at NJ 101.5 »

We could be days away from a drought

Earlier this year, parts of New Jersey were under a drought watch. The watch was discontinued in March, but the state Department of Environmental Protection could soon issue a new one, perhaps in the next few days… "During the summer there is no real way to project the amount of rainfall that will hit a particular region, or even a municipality," he said. "One side of town versus another can differ by several inches when it comes to an individual storm or storms over a couple of days," says Dave Robinson, the state climatologist at Rutgers University.

Read the entire article at NJ 101.5 »

Majority of US consumers ‘lack understanding’ of GMOs – survey

Almost 60% of American consumers have "a fair or poor understanding" of GMO foods, despite generally supporting a recently approved bill to introduce mandatory labelling of GMOs in the US… William Hallman, also a visiting scholar at the Annenberg Public Policy Center and professor of human ecology at Rutgers University, said that the bill could help consumers to improve their understanding of genetically modified foods.

Read the entire article at FoodBev Media »

Climate tipping points: What do they mean for society?

The phrase “tipping point” passed its own tipping point and caught fire after author Malcolm Gladwell’s so-named 2000 book. It’s now frequently used in discussions about climate change, but what are “climate tipping points”? And what do they mean for society and the economy?.. “I hear from a lot of people in the general public who wonder whether we’ve passed a tipping point with respect to the climate, but frequently they don’t know precisely what the term means,” said Robert E. Kopp, the study’s lead author and an associate professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Rutgers. “And that’s on the scientific community. Oftentimes, we use the term in a way that doesn’t quite jive with popular understanding.” Study authors also include, among others, Rachael L. Shwom, an associate professor in the Department of Human Ecology at Rutgers.

Read the entire article at My Central Jersey »

Youngest Summer Scholar Ever, 9-Year-Old Ennyn Chiu, Finds a Perfect Fit at Rutgers

Ennyn Chiu, along with her 11-year-old sister Enna, standing in front of Lipman Hall. Photo: Michael Rayes.

Ennyn Chiu, along with her 11-year-old sister Enna, standing in front of Lipman Hall. Photo: Michael Rayes.

Ennyn and her 11-year-old sister Enna are studying green-fluorescent protein and other scientific concepts with William Ward, Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology.

The high, sweet voice of Ennyn Chiu sounds every bit like that of a 9-year-old girl, exuberant with a touch of singsong. But the words she uses, an extensive vocabulary combined with confident, well-reasoned discourse, would confuse any listener into thinking she is beyond her years.

It is this precocity and love of learning that led her to the Rutgers Summer Scholars program. This summer, Ennyn became the youngest Rutgers student ever by joining a three-week class called “Experimenting with Green Florescent Protein,” a biochemistry instructional program for gifted and talented pre-college and college students.

“At first I was nervous that I would not understand what was going on,” says Ennyn. “But as my first day progressed, I understood most of it. I like that fact that we are learning biochemistry at such an early age and that we can also have lots of fun while learning.”

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Rains Ease Drought Worries for Now, but Officials Warn of Potential Water Shortage

Recent rains have eased concerns about possible drought conditions in some areas of northern and eastern New Jersey but stream-flow remains sharply below normal in most localities, and officials are warning that they may call for voluntary water-conservation measures if the latest uptick in rainfall is not sustained… State Climatologist David Robinson of Rutgers University said the state was "in better shape water wise" by mid-July than it was at the start of the month, thanks to rains that have slowed the drying out of soils, raised river levels, and reduced the drawdown on reservoirs.

Read the entire article at NJ Spotlight »

Rutgers Equine Centers Kicks Off “15 Years Of Excellence”

Summer Showcase #12 Group Shot

Presentation of the New Jersey Joint Legislative Resolution by Ann Dorsett to the Rutgers University Equine Science Center. Left to right: Ann Dorsett, Liz Durkin, Sharon Ortepio, Karyn Malinowski, Carey Williams, Brad Hillman, and Wendie Cohick.

The 2016 Rutgers Equine Science Center Summer Showcase was a huge success! Close to 100 people participated in the kickoff celebration of the Center’s 15-year anniversary on July 13th. Welcoming remarks were given by Karyn Malinowski, director of the Equine Science Center, and Wendie Cohick, chair of the Department of Animal Sciences, and Brad Hillman, senior associate director of the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station and director of Research.

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