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Dr. Jeffrey McDonnell, a watershed hydrologist and eco-hydrologist, will discuss the issues faced by the world’s freshwater resources during the 2013 Keohane Lecture.

McDonnell will present “Tracking raindrops: Basic science for understanding global change impacts on fresh water” at 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 16 in the Nelson Mandela Auditorium in the FedEx Global Education Center.

McDonnell is a faculty member at the Global Institute for Water Security at the University of Saskatchewan and Distinguished Professor at the University of Aberdeen and Oregon State University.

As the 2013 Nannerl Keohane Distinguished Visiting Professor, McDonnell will spend January through March in North Carolina, working primarily from UNC’s Institute for the Environment and spending one day a week at Duke University working with colleagues at the Nicholas School of the Environment.

The Nannerl Keohane Distinguished Professorship was created in 2004 by then UNC Chancellor James Moeser to honor Keohane, Duke’s president at the time. The professorship is to spark collaboration between the two universities.

In his lecture, McDonnell will discuss issues freshwater resources face and outline new research that tracks individual rainstorms using stable isotopes. These fingerprints of the water molecule offer new insights into the main processes governing water cycling in watersheds and how these processes portend change in water availability, supply, quality and resulting ecosystem services.

Water is the subject of Carolina’s first campus-wide academic theme, “Water in our World.”

Published January 7, 2013.