California’s Central Valley has some of the most productive agricultural land in the world, but the accumulation of salt from irrigation water is decreasing crop productivity and threatening the industry’s long-term sustainability.
A new project out of UC Merced — funded by a $2.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation — seeks to address this problem by developing an innovative, environmentally friendly and economically feasible system to desalinate and reuse agricultural drainage water.
It’s before dawn on a Saturday morning in mid-May — not a time anyone would expect the UC Merced campus to be busy. But it is.
This is Spring Commencement, and there is much work to do.
Parking and transportation staff are placing signage and temporary fencing. In the kitchens, dozens of dining and catering workers are preparing breakfast for thousands of people, including the police officers and transportation employees who will spend the morning guiding traffic, answering questions and maintaining order.
A new effort is underway to lay the groundwork for the next major development at UC Merced — a fourth school, this one with the Gallo family name on it.
The planning initiative is a faculty-led effort to create a new, transdisciplinary school that draws upon the expertise of scientists, researchers and practitioners from broad backgrounds to instill the next generations of leaders with the skills and knowledge needed to understand, design and manage complex systems.