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RAP opportunity at U.S. Environmental Protection Agency     EPA

Solutions for Addressing Nutrient Impacts on Water Quality and Ecosystem Services


Center for Public Health and Environmental Exposure, Pacific Ecological Systems Division

opportunity location
22.10.04.B7165 Corvallis, OR 97333


name email phone
Jana E. Compton 541.754.4620


Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorus (P) inputs to the biosphere have increased by nearly five-fold under human influence in the conterminous US. These nutrient inputs have been used to feed, clothe, heat, and transport human communities, yet their environmental effects include a cascade of impacts to air, land, freshwater, and coastal ecosystems. This project will quantify the inputs, sources, transformations, and effects of nutrients in order to improve management and policy decisions for air and water quality. Models, GIS analyses, and literature review will be used to estimate the nutrient inputs, outputs, and removal within many ecosystem types within the US, including wetlands, riparian areas, and river networks (headwater streams, perennial streams, and large rivers). Our previous work has assembled national inventory and mapping of current and legacy nutrient inputs to the US landscape at varying watershed scales, modeling comparisons to examine the agreement for nutrient source attribution, and modeling of scenarios of nutrient use at the national scale. The primary duty station is the Freshwater Ecology Branch of the Pacific Ecological Systems Division (PESD) located in Corvallis, Oregon. The Associate will work closely with WED and other EPA scientists as part of a national EPA program in the impacts of nitrogen within EPA’s Sustainable and Healthy Communities Research Program.

We seek an Associate to conduct assessments of the social, environmental, and economic implications of interventions in nutrient cycles designed to achieve reductions in inputs and improvements in water quality and ecosystem services. Work would involve combining information with nutrient source data to model options for reducing nutrient inputs to groundwater and surface water at national or large regional scales.  These reductions could be associated with on-farm nutrient management, edge-of-field practices, conservation activities, targeted nutrient reductions or other approaches.  The Associate would also contribute to and maintain a recently developed database of ecosystem service response functions related to nutrient loads. Analyses should focus on spatially explicit data sets (both existing and emerging) to enhance understanding of spatial and temporal dynamics of nutrient impacts on water quality and ecosystem services.  

key words
Ecosystem services; Ecology; Nitrogen; Phosphorus; Modeling; Biogeochemistry; Water quality; Air quality; Natural resource economics; Behavioral Economics; Conservation; Nutrient Management


Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral and Senior applicants


Base Stipend Travel Allotment Supplementation
$65,000.00 0.00

$1,365 Supplement for Medical Screening Exams


$10,000 Supplement for Seniors

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