A new department at Oklahoma State University will focus its research on conservation and sustainability of Oklahoma's natural resources. The Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management opened its doors in July 2006.
"We have had an interest for some time on campus to bring together several disciplines of natural resource management which we thought could better foster instruction, research and educational opportunities," said interim department head Tom Hennessey.
Research conducted by the department will focus on four core programs:
" rangeland ecology and
"We're interested in overall management practices to try to link the concepts of sustainability to profitability," Hennessey said. "We are interested in developing models and practices that will conserve and, in some cases, restore ecosystems " practices that will allow for long-term conservation and sustainability but also allow for the economic enterprise to be profitable."
Another goal of the department is to educate the community about conservation of resources, both through public projects and by graduating students who have an understanding of resource management.
"What we're after here, our vision, would be to produce economically prudent practices for sustaining resource production, maintaining landscapes and biodiversity, and improving the quality of natural resources of Oklahoma," Hennessey said. "Our vision is that this department and OSU would lead the way in creating a more environmentally conscious and responsible society." "Chris Willard