ES Summer Internship Presentations
September 16 and Sept 23

Come here ES Majors talk about their diverse and amazing summer internship opportunities! Some of the organizations that will be represented include: Oceana, Sebasticook Regional Land Trust, American Wind Energy Association, The Nature Conservancy, National Institutes of Health, the list goes on!!!

Young Alums in Conservation Panel
September 30, Robins Room, Roberts
Garrison Beck, Damariscotta Lake Watershed Associations
Emmie Theberge, NRCM
Aaron Megquier, Friends of Baxter State Park
Kaitlyn Bernard, Appalachian Mount Club

The panelists will provide a quick background of their various organizations and then answer the question, “”what do you see as the strengths and weaknesses for the future of conservation here in Maine?”

The Dollars and Sense of Ballot Propositions: Imputing Environmental Values from Voting Behavior
Nathan Chan, Assistant Professor of Economics, Colby College
October 21

Environmental valuation techniques seek to compute dollar values for environmental goods and services. Such analysis helps place environmental amenities on equal footing with business concerns and aids decision-makers faced with public policy tradeoffs. Historically, environmental valuation has played a critical role in efforts to curb pollution and conserve ecosystems.

We develop and discuss an innovative approach to environmental valuation that estimates people’s willingness to pay (WTP) for public goods using referendum voting data. We demonstrate this approach by applying it to a series of ballot propositions in California spanning a wide range of public goods. We find a range of annual WTP values for successful propositions from $2.21 per person for water quality, flood control, and coastal protection to $38.85 per person for public school funding. Our work is useful on two fronts: we develop a new revealed preference approach for estimating WTP for public goods, and we provide ex-post benefit-cost analysis for policies that occur through referenda.


Marine conservation in Maine and beyond
Loren McClenachan, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies, Colby College
Oct 28

Prof. McClenachan will provide an update on her research


Soils Year 2015: Inseparability of Science and Socio-Politics
Jodi Koberinski, Colby Oak Fellow
Dec 2

“The eco-social context of soil scientists is as important as the soil quality indicators measured. An end to a pretense of neutrality would be of scientifc and wider social benefit, so as to promote an open discussion on political positions, the sscope of science and the role of scientists relative to the state and the rest of society, among many other unspoken, yet unerlying issues… ultimately the issue of soil quality is a “social problem”…”                 Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro

We will discuss the intersection of soils science and socio-politics as a microcosm of a larger conversation long overdue in capitalist countries about the nature and role of “science” more broadly, as well as the impact of a lack of biophysical training and understanding amongst forces for social change.