Interns Madison, Chelsey, Frances, Shad, Daniel, Shirley, Aramis, Emma, and Michael spent the summer working on the University of Vermont campus focusing on several projects.
Aramis, Emma, and Michael worked to understand the Act 250 process, focusing on the operation and interplay of the various permitting processes in operation in Vermont that are relevant to water quality management. They examined the separate processes, seeking ways that one process could be used to augment or circumvent another, and documenting current permit holdings, primarily by Vermont's Agency of Agriculture, Farms, and Markets, and assigned through the Act 250 development permitting process.
Daniel and Shirley focused on the decision-making processes of Vermont's large farms and how the decision making processes of the large farms are different from smaller farms. They worked to categorize the Vermont large farm permits housed in the Vermont Agency of Agriculture and then analyzed the categorized data to sort out the decision heuristics of the large farms.
Frances and Shad worked with Best Management Practices (BMPs) aimed at mitigating nutrient loads into water-bodies, working towards systematically quantifying the effectiveness of these BMPs. They spent their efforts uncovering effectiveness magnitudes reported in a body of literature and then summarized the effectiveness with meta-analysis.
Madison and Chelsey focused on supporting efforts to improve understanding of how voluntary water quality management efforts operate and the impacts that they have. They reviewed, described, and analyzed regulations and regulatory enforcement decisions to identify patterns in identifying regulatory violations to prosecute and in the decisions made. They wanted to understand the patterns in the application of water quality enforcement programs and the patterns in how new regulations are adopted in Vermont.