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Science on Tap

"Science on tap" A small robot with a mug it its hand.

'Science on tap' A small robot with a mug it its hand.

Green Stormwater Infrastructure for Community Well-being and Environmental Justice
Monday February 14, 2022
6 p.m.

An aerial view of the vine street express way.

Online event hosted on Zoom

The Philadelphia Water Department is currently in the middle of a 25-year, billion-dollar infrastructure project that will protect the City’s rivers and streams from sewage pollution. Called “Green City, Clean Waters,” this initiative is groundbreaking in its unusual reliance on innovative green stormwater infrastructure: engineered soil and plant systems that reduce the amount of stormwater flowing into the City’s aged sewer system while providing numerous co-benefits, like local cooling, air quality improvements and stress reduction.

In February’s virtual Science on Tap, Alexis Schulman, PhD, Dolan fellow for innovation in water research at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, will discuss Philadelphia’s pollution prevention project and how it might be leveraged to provide community benefits to neighborhoods suffering from chronic underinvestment and cumulative environmental hazards.

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About the Speaker: Alexis Schulman, PhD, is the Dolan fellow for innovation in water research at the Academy of Natural Sciences’ Patrick Center for Environmental Research, and assistant research professor in Drexel University’s Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Sciences Department. An environmental planner and social scientist, she is interested in understanding what drives "green," resilient innovation in urban infrastructure, policy and planning.

Much of her work starts from the questions: Why do some communities and governments choose to embrace more sustainable practices, and how do those practices become entrenched as the new status quo? Her research has focused on the adoption of green stormwater infrastructure in U.S. cities; the use of local ecological knowledge in natural resource management science; and the promises and pitfalls of adaptive management programs. She received her PhD in urban and regional planning and Masters in city planning from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and she holds a BSE in environmental engineering from Princeton University.