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Center for Policy Studies
Public Affairs Discussion Group

What's Happening in Lake Erie?

Gerald Matisoff, Ph.D. - Professor of Earth, Environmental, and Planetary Sciences at Case Western Reserve University
Friday September 25, 2015
12:30-1:30 p.m.
Dampeer Room
Kelvin Smith Library
Case Western Reserve University

Dear Colleagues:

The Plain Dealer reports that, "Lake Erie is running out of time – again." An August 30 article reminded readers how the lake was called "dead" in the early 1970s, prompting government response in what some called "the second battle of Lake Erie." But now algal blooms are becoming more prominent again, even causing a drinking water crisis in Toledo in August of 2014.

Professor Matisoff has been helping explain the lake's condition since the late 1970s, both in his own research and as an editor of the Journal of Great Lakes Research. He wrote in 2005 that the research which showed the effects of phosphorous and other human-generated nutrients on the lake led to the policies which helped the lake recover, so that, "twenty years later this process was heralded as one of humankind's greatest environmental success stories." But in 2014 he reported "a decline in water quality in Lake Erie over the past decade, despite increased efforts to limit nutrient loading." So what is happening, why, and what can be done about it?

All best regards,
Joe White
Luxenberg Family Professor of Public Policy and Director, Center for Policy Studies

About Our Guests

Gerald Matisoff specializes in sedimentary and environmental geochemistry. He joined our faculty at CWRU in 1977 and served as Chair of the Department of Geological Sciences, then re-named Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences, from 1999 to 2014. Professor Matisoff served as Editor of the Journal of Great Lakes Research from 1999-2003, and has been on its editorial board since 1980. Among his many research projects on the status of Lake Erie, he directed an EPA-funded grant on "Lake Erie Trophic Status," testifying to a U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works hearing on developments in the lake; and has a current EPA grant that supports his research on the internal cycling of phosphorus in the western basin of Lake Erie.

Where We Meet

The Friday Public Affairs Lunch convenes each Friday when classes are in session, from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. We usually meet in the Dampeer Room of Kelvin Smith Library. The Dampeer Room is on the second floor of the library. If you get off the elevators, turn right, pass the first bank of tables, and turn right again. Occasionally we need to use a different room; that will always be announced in the weekly e-mails.

Parking Possibilities

The most convenient parking is the lot underneath Severance Hall. We regret that it is not free. For a few weeks construction on East Boulevard will block northbound traffic to the Severance garage. So if you are coming from Euclid Ave, please turn north at Ford Drive, then left at Bellflower and left from Bellflower onto East Boulevard, heading south. From the Severance lot there is an elevator up to street level (labeled as for the Thwing Center); it is less than 50 yards from that exit to the library entrance. You can also get from the Severance garage to the library without going outside. Near the entry gates - just to the right if you were driving out - there is a door into a corridor. Walk down the corridor and there will be another door. Beyond that door you'll find the entrance to an elevator which goes up to an entrance right inside the doors to Kelvin Smith Library.

Friday Lunch Upcoming Topics and Speakers:

October 2: Moving Towards Health Care Justice: Navigating the ACA and Beyond. With Rachel Rosen DeGolia, Director, Universal Health Care Action Network and Health Benefits Exchange navigator.

October 9: China’s Aging Population: Policy Decisions and Program Challenges. With M.C. “Terry” Hokenstad, Distinguished University Professor and Ralph S. and Dorothy P. Schmitt Professor, Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. ***Alternate Location: Mather House Room 100***

October 16: The Issues About Issue 3, The Ohio Marijuana Legalization Initiative. With Mark Naymik, Columnist, The Plain Dealer.

October 23: Energy, Climate, and the Historian's View of the Future. With Peter A. Shulman, Associate Professor of History.

October 30: From "9 to 5" to What? New Work Patterns and Their Implications. With Jenny Rae Hawkins, Visiting Assistant Professor of Economics.

November 6: A Year Away from the 2016 Election…. With Paul Herrnson, Professor of Political Science, University of Connecticut.

November 13: Why Virtual Schools are Growing So Fast, and What it Might Mean for the Future of Public Education. With Peter Robertson, Senior Vice President of School Operations, Connections Education.

November 20: Integrating the Inner City Through Mixed-Income Development. With Mark Joseph, Associate Professor at MSASS and Director, National Initiative on Mixed-Income Communities; Taryn Gross, Project Coordinator for the Initiative, and Emily Miller, Project Associate for the Initiative. Co-sponsored with the Schubert Center for Child Studies. ***Alternate Location: Mandel Community Studies Center Room 115, 11402 Bellflower Road***

November 27: Thanksgiving Break

December 4: Making Clean Energy Work. With Walter Money, Whole House Energy Solutions.

September 21, 2015

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Upcoming Events

From Baghdad to Cleveland and Back: My personal journey through modern Iraq

Shwan Ibrahim Taha, CWRU Alumnus

Wednesday, September 30, 2015, 4:30pm, Tinkham Veale University Center, Ballroom C, 11038 Bellflower Road, Cleveland, OH. This program is sponsored by the Northeast Ohio Consortium for Middle East Studies.

Attending CWRU in 1986 at the height of the Iran-Iraq war and returning to a devastated country in 2003, Shwan Ibrahim Taha has witnessed some of the Middle East’s most profound changes. A biomedical engineering graduate, Mr. Taha nevertheless charted an impressive 20 year career in Middle East banking and finance. He is the Chairman and Owner of Rabee Securities, Iraq's premier financial institution. With offices in Baghdad, Erbil, Sulaymaniyah, and Istanbul, Mr. Taha brings a unique perspective to the rapid changes which have shaken this important part of the world.

The Revenge of the Nerds, and Other Dispatches from the Intellectual Property Wars

A Global Currents Lecture Discussion with Susan K. Sell, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, The George Washington University.

Monday October 5, 2015, 4:00 p.m.-5:30 p.m., Case Western Reserve University, Tinkham Veale University Center, Senior Classroom A, 11038 Bellflower Road, Cleveland, OH. This program is made possible by the generosity of Ms. Eloise Briskin and sponsored by the Center for Policy Studies.

In the 1980s the United States government made negotiation and enforcement of strong “intellectual property” rights one of the guiding principles of its foreign policy. It was backed by major corporations and in many cases governments from developed nations. One stage was the 1994 Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), but TRIPS, as Susan Sell argues, in retrospect was only a step in a much more extensive series of restrictions that have been achieved in a series of forums since.

Yet this campaign has met major setbacks. In 2001 the WTO Doha Declaration underscored countries’ rights to put public health before patents. In 2012, legislation to restrict downloading, streaming, and file-sharing on the internet was breezing through Congress, until it was suddenly swamped by a tidal wave of net-based protest.

The newest battle in the now nearly Thirty-Years War about intellectual property involves the Trans-Pacific Partnership. What might we learn from the past about what could happen next? To help us understand the battle and the war, we will be joined by Professor Susan Sell, one of the leading scholars of the conflict.

September 2015






































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