LSU Environmental Sciences Professor Recognized for Coastal Stewardship
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 25, 2019
BATON ROUGE – Linda Hooper-Bùi, a professor of environmental sciences within LSU’s College of the Coast & Environment, is one of six honorees to receive the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana’s 2019 Coastal Stewardship Award, which recognizes her extensive contributions to Louisiana wetlands restoration and conservation. The 24th annual award ceremony will be held on May 17, at the Hilton Baton Rouge Capital Center.
“I’ve been in awe of current and past award winners, and to be counted as one of them is a highlight of my career. This award is so special. It recognizes the hard work of our Disaster Ecology team throughout the years—graduate and undergraduate students and staff members who have worked tirelessly beside me to study the complex marsh ecosystem, the impact of the Deepwater Horizon drilling disaster, and relative sea-level rise,” Hooper-Bùi said.
Hooper-Bùi has served as an ecologist and entomologist at LSU since 1998 and has been conducting environmental research in coastal Louisiana for many years. She studies the impacts of stressors on insects, fish, birds, and plants along the Gulf of Mexico and the impacts of multi-stressors on ecosystem ecology along coastal Louisiana. Lately, she has been researching the causes of the Roseau cane dieback, which has resulted in the loss of an estimated 100,000 acres of Roseau cane in Plaquemines Parish and has been blamed on an invasive scale insect.
According to Chris D'Elia, professor and dean of LSU’s College of the Coast & Environment, “This is a monumentally important problem that is affecting coastal erosion, and faculty from the College of the Coast & Environment, like Dr. Bùi, are playing an essential role in understanding this serious scale infestation."
Currently, Hooper-Bùi serves as the director of LSU’s chapter of EnvironMentors, an award-winning, after-school science mentoring initiative that pairs high school students from Scotlandville Magnet High with LSU undergraduate and graduate mentors who help them improve their understanding of science. Last year, LSU EnvironMentors was named National Chapter of the Year by its parent organization, the National Council for Science and the Environment, and the program has a record of success, with 98 percent of program completers graduating from high school and 70 percent choosing to pursue higher education or join the military. Much of the research and field trips EnvironMentors conduct address coastal issues.
“I am especially proud of our EnvironMentors program. Our student mentors provide underserved students with the personal tools and skills essential to meet challenging life goals. Nearly every student so far has received a high school diploma. In fact, many alumni have received scholarships and gone to college, which is a primary aim of the program. Thirteen have already graduated from college. This is a remarkable accomplishment," D’Elia said.
Hooper-Bùi attributes her success to her belief that collaboration is the cornerstone of effective research and education.
“We need the brain trust of all coastal scientists cooperating to solve the immense problems of Roseau cane dieback, coastal land loss, impacts of hurricanes and sea-level rise, and impacts of restoration processes on coastal forests, marshes, and fisheries. Further, mentoring of the next generation will fuel an inclusive future to solve complex problems Louisiana faces in the time to come,” Hooper-Bùi said.
LSU’s College of the Coast & Environment performs research on every continent. To learn more about our current research projects, view our interactive global impact map.
Learn more about LSU EnvironMentors.
Contact Christine Wendling
LSU College of the Coast & Environment
LSU Media Relations