Can the delicate mustard plant protect important crops—including potatoes and mighty fir trees—from ravaging fungal disease? Can dairy farms become manufacturers of renewable energy and help fight global climate change? Can new ways of composting shield crops from a host of illnesses and save farmers millions of dollars in pest control, fertilizers, and soil enhancements, now and well into the future?
At WSU, leaders in sustainable and organic agriculture research are poised for significant breakthroughs in the scientific and practical applications of their far-reaching studies. Lynne Carpenter-Boggs and Chad Kruger, both of the Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources, are examining effects of nitrogen and bacteria, and working with small- and large-scale farmers, agri-industry leaders, and policy makers to help increase crop yields, create new products, reduce air and water pollution, manage agricultural waste, and improve income and human welfare across Washington and around the globe.
Featuring: Chad Kruger
Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources
Chad Kruger is interim director of the Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources (CSANR) at WSU. In addition to administering a research policy network, for the past five years he has coordinated CSANR’s Climate Friendly Farming Project, developing practices and technologies that save energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, sequester carbon in soils, and provide renewable, biomass-based fossil fuel alternatives. The project recently won a USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture Partnership Award for Innovative Program Models.
Professor Kruger is an affiliate faculty member of the University of Washington Climate Impacts Group, and was a member of the 2007/2008 Washington State Climate Action Team, co-chairing the Agriculture Sector Carbon Market Workgroup. He studied ecointensive agriculture technologies at Northwest College in Kirkland, Wash., and earned a master’s degree in land resources from the Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin, where he was an Au Sable graduate fellow.
Featuring: Lynne Carpenter-Boggs, Ph.D.
Lynne Carpenter-Boggs serves as research leader for biologically intensive and organic agriculture (BIOAg), a unique interdisciplinary program at that brings together researchers and resources from several WSU colleges and departments. She previously was an instructor and research associate in the University’s crop and soil sciences department. Dr. Carpenter-Boggs also serves as director for the Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Agriculture, enabling greater understanding among post-baccalaureate students of the science, practices, and current issues in sustainable agriculture.
She conducts research into composting unusual wastes, the use of compost teas for plant growth promotion and disease management, high nitrogen-fixing legumes and rhizobial bacteria, weed control for organic apples, integrated organic crop-livestock systems, and green manure crops for biological disease control. Dr. Carpenter-Boggs’s undergraduate work at Northland College focused on biophysical environmental studies. She earned a master’s degree in soil microbiology and biochemistry at Iowa State University and her doctorate in soil science at WSU.