100 Water Heroes: Elizabeth Boyer

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Associate Professor of Water Resources at Penn State University

Elizabeth Boyer is an Associate Professor of Water Resources at Penn State University. She has also been named the Director of the Pennsylvania Water Resources Research Center, as well as Assistant Director of the Penn State's Institutes of Energy and the Environment.

Elizabeth’s research interests include unpacking the ecological and hydrological systems that impact upon water quality and quantity. Her academic career is filled with a range of varied publications, including a number of papers on the impacts of nitrogen, phosphorus, and carbon on watersheds throughout America. This topic is particularly important because it “provide[s] a scientific basis for design and implementation of land management programs and policies to mitigate the effects of pollution, and to protect, conserve, and restore surface waters.”

Speaking on her interest in how changes to eco-hydrologic systems impact water quality and scarcity, Elizabeth stated:

Many parts of the world already lack clean water, many landscapes are being degraded, and many surface and ground waters are being polluted.  Water scarcity will be an even greater problem in the coming years as demand for water increases with population and economic growth. Concepts and tools from ecohydrology can help achieve sustainable management of water, and to help solve global water problems.

Elizabeth is a member of numerous advisory committees, including the US Environmental Protection Agency where she focuses on air pollution and water resources. She also serves on the National Academies Advisory Committee, evaluating the New York City Watershed Protection Program. Elizabeth’s vast career in the water sector continues on to include being the Editor of the international journal of Hydrological Processes, on the Board of Directors of the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrological Sciences and a leader of one of the National Institutes for Water Resources’ centres.

Elizabeth is one of our #100WaterHeroes for helping us to make sense of the hydrological and ecological processes that impact upon water quality and water scarcity.

Twitter: @bethboyerPSU