Recently Jim drove an Emriver Em3 geomodel stream table and Emflume1 flume down to Baton Rouge. He helped the team at the Louisiana Art & Science Museum (LASM) install their new models. LASM is right on the bank of the Mississippi River.
The team at the museum was incredibly hospitable, excited about their new Emriver equipment, and generous in sharing their mission.
This school year, they’ll use our models to educate around 4,000 visiting 8th graders about human-river interactions. Their new interdisciplinary program was featured recently in the news.
Here’s an excerpt from the news article:
Created through a new partnership with the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, ‘The River Dynamics Experience,’ offered free exclusively for eighth grade students, includes a visit to the LSU Center for River Studies and same-day, hands-on classes and programs at the museum that are aligned with the Louisiana Student Standards for Science.
The River Dynamics Experience is one of many exciting opportunities for students who visit LASM because it introduces them to the challenges of land loss and coastal erosion, inspiring them to discover solutions to these real-world issues,’ said Nita Mitchell, director of education. ‘Not only will they visit one of the most technologically-advanced river models in the world, but they will also engage with our new stream table and play with the principles of river dynamics.
As part of this program, they’re working with their neighbors Louisana State University (LSU) and the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) to design their curriculum and help students connect with the region’s critical river and delta environment.
After the stream table and flume installation, Jim was able to join the museum staff on a tour of the CPRA’s large Mississippi River model where they’re conducting research on various management techniques.
The Mississippi River Delta and coastal Louisiana are disappearing at an astonishing rate: a football field of wetlands vanishes into open water every 100 minutes. Since the 1930s, Louisiana has lost over 2,000 square miles of land, an area roughly the size of Delaware. Many factors have contributed to this collapse.
Restore the Mississippi River Delta attributes the collapse to a combination of leveeing of the Mississippi River, shipping channels and canals, oil and gas infrastructure, dames upriver, subsidence, sea level rise, hurricanes, the BP Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion, and invasive species.
Baton Rouge is an area highly impacted by its changing environment, and we like seeing our river models used in locations where they are extremely relevant to people’s lives in numerous ways.
Find out more about our models at museums here.
Updated November 24, 2019 to include information about Lousiana land loss.