“I was shocked because I haven’t heard of anyone winning this award twice, let alone consecutively,” said Galinato, who is a former editor of the journal. “I’m extremely grateful and proud that my peers feel this paper is worthy of being honored.”
This year’s winning paper looks at how to best use revenue neutral tax money to incentivize the purchase of cellulose-based biofuels to include in gasoline, while trying to move away from the relatively more polluting crude oil. Revenue neutral taxes means a new tax is added, but it is used to reduce another revenue stream.
In this case, a tax is added on a polluting input like crude oil, while the overall sales tax rate is reduced, so that taxes collected from crude oil offset the losses in sales tax revenue.
The higher price in crude oil would reduce demand for this input and incentivize the purchase of other types of inputs that are relatively cheaper (and less polluting), like bio-ethanol. One type of bio-ethanol is cellulose-based biofuels, which come from products like switchgrass or tree residues. They don’t include biofuels produced using corn.
He and co-author Tristan Skolrud, who earned a doctorate at WSU in economics and is now a tenure track assistant professor at the University of Saskatchewan, created a model that looked at the impacts on cellulose-based biofuels sales when taxes on carbon-based non-sustainable fuels are increased and sales taxes for consumers are reduced.
“Our model found that this only increased biofuel sales a very small amount,” Galinato said. “The hope for these policy plans is to reduce crude oil use, which becomes more expensive, and to increase demand for cellulosic ethanol.”
Money saved from reduced sales tax would help compensate consumers for any increase in overall gasoline prices that they might face.
“We did not see any substantial increase in demand for cellulosic ethanol,” Galinato said. “However, overall welfare increased for the state.”
The results of the paper surprised the authors, who expected a larger benefit for the biofuel industry.
“If you reduce sales tax, you help a lot of people, which explains the overall increase in welfare,” Galinato said. “But it doesn’t directly affect cellulose-based biofuel producers much at all. Revenue neutral taxes are helpful, but it depends on who you want to help.”
The authors also wrote a companion paper that used their models to look at using revenue neutral taxes to directly subsidize cellulosic biofuel producers using the money raised from the crude oil tax. Not surprisingly, that paper found that method had major benefits to the cellulosic biofuel industry, but significantly lower impact on overall welfare.
Galinato hopes the papers will help policy makers as they work to help boost the biofuel industry.
“Since 2007, policy makers have wanted the biofuels industry to grow and reduce reliance on non-renewable energy sources,” Galinato said. “We’re still working on that. With a revenue neutral tax policy, we identified one instrument that can affect overall welfare for society or be more focused on helping a particular industry in the state.”
New from Extension: launching an online food market; managing weeds in wheat
Every month, the WSU Extension Publications Store shares free guides that support better farms and businesses. The latest publications help farmers identify and manage a troublesome weed, and assist community groups and business owners in choosing software to run an online food market.
Integrated Management of Feral Rye in Winter Wheat (PNW660). Feral rye, also known as volunteer, or cereal rye, plagues winter wheat growers in low rainfall zones of eastern Washington and Oregon and southern Idaho. This guide examines the biology, characteristics, and management of this troublesome weed. Authored by Drew Lyon, WSU Endowed Chair Small Grains Extension and Research, Weed Science; Andrew Hulting, Oregon State University Extension Weed Science Specialist; Judit Barroso, OSU Weed Scientist; and Joan Campbell, University of Idaho Weed Science Principle Researcher.
Online Local Food Markets Choosing the Right Software (FS345E). Online local food markets support farms and specialty businesses, increasing access for customers. Starting an online market demands time, planning, and many decisions. Markets are driven by software, and it’s hard to know how to get started. This free guide help businesses, cooperatives, farmers, and organizations identify which software to choose. Authored by WSU Kitsap Extension Director and Community and Economic Director Laura Ryser and Clallam County Extension Director Clea Rome.
EDEN is the Extension Disaster Education Network. 1890 refers to the group of 19 historically black land grant colleges and universities that were part of the Second Morrill Act of 1890.
“The 1890 land grant universities are really interested in expanding the resources and programs they can provide for disaster education,” Sanders said. “These schools are historically underfunded, but still want to do the best they can to expand the positive impacts in their states and communities.”
She talked to the advisory group about the unique way WSU Extension and emergency preparedness work together.
“Extension doesn’t typically play a direct role in emergency management at any of the 1890 schools,” Sanders said. “Here, I’m the Emergency Management director for the university and have an Extension appointment. I shared how we work with other institutions on campus and in the community.”
“There was a lot of interest from those in attendance wanting to learn more following their conference,” Sanders said. “Many attendees don’t have much experience with CERT, and don’t know how to get started, but are eager to build their emergency planning and preparedness capacity. That’s where we are able to help.”
The 1890-EDEN Advisory Group provides guidance for increasing the participation of 1890 Land-Grant Universities in EDEN. The group also leverages resources through partnerships to improve disaster programming for limited resource clientele.
Meet newest leaders of WSU Research and Extension Centers
The WSU College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences is proud to announce the newest group of leaders at Research and Extension Centers across the state, at Mount Vernon, Wenatchee, and Puyallup.
• Starting July 1, 2020, Carol Miles is the new interim director of Washington State University’s Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center (NWREC) at Mount Vernon.
A horticulturist who finds solutions for growing better vegetables, Miles has worked for 25 years at WSU.
“I like to say I have soil in my blood,” said Miles, whose father was a Dust Bowler, walking off the family farm in South Colorado at 6 years old “with a suitcase in one hand.”
• Chad Kruger, current director of WSU’s Northwestern Washington Research & Extension Center (NWREC) in Mount Vernon, the Puyallup Research & Extension Center, and the Center for Sustaining Agriculture & Natural Resources (CSANR), will become the next director of the Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center (TFREC) at Wenatchee, Wash.
This appointment will be a return to familiar territory for Kruger, who started at WSU in 2004: he worked for 11 years in Wenatchee as part of CSANR.
“Although I have generational family farming roots in both sides of the state, I’ve always considered myself an east-sider,” Kruger said.
Read more about Kruger’s role and mission at Wenatchee here.
• Todd Murray, entomologist and Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Program director, will become the next director of the WSU Puyallup Research and Extension Center (Puyallup REC) on July 1.
A WSU alumnus bringing more than 20 years of service to counties across Washington state, Murray takes over from outgoing director Chad Kruger, who has led the center since 2017.
“I see great opportunities to lead a team that integrates watershed science, production agriculture, urban landscape management, and human health in ways that can transform Puget Sound, Washington state, and the world,” Murray said.
Read more about Murray’s WSU career and ambitions for Puyallup in the WSU news release.
New from Extension: Field grafting grapes, rules for micro food companies, community risk prevention, and resilience after wildfire
Every month, experts with WSU Extension share free online guides aimed at helping agriculture, community health, and Northwest industry. In May, scientists shared new information that helps grape growers graft vines, community professionals reduce health risks for youths and families, small food companies adjust to new rules, and shows cattle producers how to make their operations more resilient from wildfire.
Building resilience through engagement: Brenda and Tony Richards – Rancher-to-Rancher Case Study series (PNW737). This publication is part of the Rancher-to-Rancher Case Study Series, which helps increase resilience among ranchers in the Pacific Northwest. Learn how owners of a family cow-calf operation responded to a wildfire that burned the majority of their grazing lands, along with accompanying information on invasive annual grasses and fire, post-fire rehabilitation, grazing to improve rangeland health, engagement and resources such as Rangeland Fire Protection Associations, and more. Authors include Sonia Hall, Tipton Hudson, K. Scott Jensen, Shannon Neibergs, Matthew Reeves, Georgine Yorgey, and Emily Jane Davis.
Field Grafting Grapevines in Washington State (EM121E), by Eric Gale, viticulturist at Ste Michelle Wine Estates in Prosser, and WSU Viticulture Extension Specialist Michelle Moyer. Learn how to keep pace with market demands in the vineyard with this guide, which includes a field grafting overview, discussion of different types of grafts, and step-by-step how-to’s.
Washington State Very Small Food Processors: An Overview of What You Need to Know About FSMA (FS343E). Part of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the most significant update to food production laws in decades, the Preventive Controls for Human Food rule regulates all companies that process, pack, and hold food for human consumption. This free guide helps very small companies understand how the rule applies to them; by WSU School of Food Science interim director Girish Ganjyal, SFS research associate Ewa Pietrysiak, and WSDA Food Safety Program Manage David Smith.
Using NEAR Sciences to Address Community Health: A Primer (FS342E). This guide helps Extension professionals and prevention practitioners use and understand the NEAR sciences—neuroscience, epigenetics, adverse childhood experiences, and resilience—to address risk factors that impact life-long health. Authors are Joy Lile, Kitsap 4-H Extension Regional Specialist, and Laura Ryser, Director and Community and Economic Development Specialist, Kitsap County Extension.
Cedric Habiyaremye, a research associate and alumnus with the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, shared challenges and opportunities facing international food security due to the COVID-19 pandemic, speaking with global news organizations this spring.
At WSU, Habiyaremye leads and facilitates research collaborations with farmers in Africa to find ways to improve crop diversity and nutrition.
COVID-19 will double the number of people suffering from food crises, increasing to 265 million according to an estimate by the United Nations World Food Programme.
Interviewed by BBC World News, the crop scientist stressed that food security during the pandemic must be viewed “through the lens of public health and nutrition, rather than producing more calories.” Noting challenges in crop diversity, Habiyareme mentioned his work in introducing nutritious quinoa in Africa, and talked about how plant scientists and breeders are working on ways to stop devastating pests.
Unless speedy measures are taken to support the global food supply chain, he stated, low-income countries in Africa and south Asia will see rapid increases in hunger. That in turn increases vulnerability to disease. Countries should focus on maintaining the market flow of agricultural inputs, food, and feed.
“The protection of food security is inseparable from actions to protect the health, family welfare, commerce and other sectors,” Habiyaremye wrote. “It must be urgently integrated into all COVID-19 planning and policy.
“This an opportunity to reflect on the transformation needed if we want to develop a food system that nourishes all people, regenerates, and sustains the environment, and enables the resilience and flourishing of culture and community,” he told Forbes.
Habiyaremye’s work is supported by the Global Participatory Quinoa Research Fund, which helps WSU’s Sustainable Seed Systems Lab and collaborating farmers develop regionally-adapted quinoa varieties high in protein and minerals.
Virtual collections draw awards for WSU Apparel, Merchandising, Design and Textile students
Students in WSU’s Department of Apparel, Merchandising, Design, and Textiles (AMDT) won awards in design, potential industry impact, leadership and service this spring, based on their senior ePortfolios and projects, showcased online.
In AMDT, WSU’s comprehensive four-year apparel and textiles program, students are challenged to understand all aspects of the textile, apparel, and fashion industry, from concept to consumer.
Senior Fashion Awards
Although this year’s Mom’s Weekend Fashion Show was canceled due to the need for social distancing amid COVID-19, students were able to share their designs using photographs, drawings, and mood boards, submitted electronically for virtual judging.
One of the highlights of the annual Fashion Show is a recognition of the work of student designers, as well as the efforts of students that occur less visibly to make the show a success.
“For our design judging process, we had a great panel of eight judges, four from the apparel industry, and each judge reviewed 20 seniors’ ePortfolios,” explained AMDT Assistant Professor Chanmi Hwang, who teaches the Senior Design capstone course. This year, four designers and three students working behind the scenes were recognized. For Senior Design Awards, judges weighed competitiveness, price, quality, and purpose. The ePortfolios showed conceptual drawings and images of progress on physical garments.
Sovann Robinson was awarded Most Marketable/Ready to Wear. Michael Damaso took home Best Overall Collection Design, and Justin Janke was awarded Most Innovative Functional Design. Best Digital Product Development went to Jhon Dimaculangan.
The Leadership and Service Awards for Behind the Scene Fashion Show Production went to Bridgette Bacon, McKenzie Duquaine, and Tara Kelly.
Shanna Hiscock, academic and internship coordinator for AMDT, said it was difficult to select only three winners for the production crew.
“McKenzie stood out with her efforts, keeping our social media content fresh. Bridgette devoted hours focusing on the art for the show, and without Tara, we would not have had any photos or the amazing videos,” she said.
The challenge of social distancing led to creative solutions by students.
“In the past, we haven’t showcased these garments online,” said Hiscock, “I think that’s something that we can now start doing.” View the senior ePortfolios at wsuamdtfashionshow.squarespace.com.
Case Studies and Community Impact
Every spring semester, AMDT partners with industry members in their senior merchandising capstone course, creating experiences for students working on real-world case studies.
The judges evaluated the projects based on seven criteria: visual concept, aesthetic impact, textiles and supporting materials, target market, technical sketches and illustrations, level of difficulty, visual presentation, and creativity.
This year, Bridgette Bacon, Brooke Carson, Camden Clark, Jhon Dimaculangan, Cali Flynn, and Haley Simmonds were awarded first place in the Cotton Case Study, awarded by Mark Messura of Cotton Incorporated for their team design CODDLE; a reuseable cotton diaper.
The second-place prize went to Jess Daher, Julianna Diaz, Justin Janke, Kaley Mozell, Eilish Rising, and Olivia Taylor for their design Toasty, a weatherproof parka for kids.
The KINONA Case Study, awarded by Dianna Jefferies Celuch, CEO and CO-Founder of KINONA SPORTS, awarded first place to Maddie Egberg, Tara Kelly, Kendra Kranc, Regina Pozzi, Jackie Sauvage, and Macayla White for their project featuring extended sizes. Ryan Falk, Mackenzie Hansen, Nicole Ilewicz, Emily Kazmark, and Yeburzing Mengistu were awarded second place as a team for their travel extension. Jennifer Jackman, Economic Developer Manager of the City of Pullman, Aziz A. Makhani of the Washington Small Business Development Center in Pullman, and Adam Jones of Pullman Marketing made up the judging committee.
First place was awarded to the Coug Store Team: Ariana Andino, Jeanette Arellano, Camilla Costa Goetz, Sophie Jacobs, Sarah Parchman, and Gisela Valderrama.
Second Place was awarded to the team representing Lily Bee’s Boutique, Bridal, and High-End Consignments: Hugo Barragan, Olga Berezyuk, Hailey Cribbs, Kyung Lee, Sydney McAvinew, and Donovan Moi.
Due to the challenges facing Pullman businesses regarding COVID 19, the winning teams chose to return the prizes donated by the businesses to show continuous support for the local community.
Judges appreciated the varied methods of online presentation and mixed media, despite not being able to see the actual garments in person, Hwang said.
“They felt the ePortfolio format is the way designers need to learn to express themselves and their ideas in a world of social media and technology, she said.
Learn more about the academic opportunities at WSU’s Department of Apparel, Merchandising, Design and Textiles by visiting amdt.wsu.edu.
New guides from Extension: Food, water, energy; apples and pumpkins
The latest guides from WSU Extension, available for free online, help Northwest farmers and orchardists, food importers, and agricultural stakeholders learn about new rules, improved practices, and changing conditions.
New publications include:
Economic Feasibility of Using Alternative Plastic Mulches: A Pumpkin Case Study in Western Washington (TB68E). Laid in the field for weed control, moisture conservation, soil warming, and improved yields, biodegradable mulches are an environmentally friendly alternative to conventional polyethylene mulch. This guide helps Washington growers estimate the physical and financial requirements of planting pumpkins on a more sustainable product. Authors include School of Economic Sciences faculty member and IMPACT Center Assistant Director Suzette Galinato, University of Tennessee Professor Margarita Velandia, and Shuresh Ghimire, assistant extension educator with the University of Connecticut.
Foreign Supplier Verification Programs (FSVP): An Overview (FS341E). By scientists Ewa Pietrysiak and Girish Ganjyal in the School of Food Science, this is an overview for the food industry on the Foreign Supplier Verification Program and its rules and terminology covering the importation of food products into the U.S.
Perspectives from Stakeholders on the Food-Energy-Water Nexus in Metropolitan Seattle (TB69E). Climate change, population growth, urbanization, and dependence on international trade have all increased the demand for food, energy, and water resources, while raising the complexity of management decisions. This publication provides a snapshot of perspectives from stakeholders across the Pacific Northwest. Authors include Liz Allen, Douglas Collins, and Kirti Rajagopalan with the WSU Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources; Brad Gaolach with the WSU Metropolitan Center for Applied Research and Extension; Kevan Moffett with the WSU School of the Environment; Michael Brady with the WSU School of Economics; Julie Padowski with the Center for Environmental Research, Education and Outreach (CEREO) and State of Washington Water Research Center; and Sasha McLarty with the WSU Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
New from Extension: The economics of potato production
Washington is the second largest producer of potatoes in the United States, growing more than 5 million tons annually.
In the WSU Extension online bookstore, Suzette Galinato, economist with the School of Economic Sciences’ IMPACT Center, and co-author Carrie Wohleb, Potato, Vegetable & Seed Crops Extension Specialist, share a new, free guide to help growers explore the feasibility of potato production in Washington’s Columbia Basin.
This study helps growers create an economic budget to evaluate farm viability, providing a general guide to estimate the fixed, variable and opportunity costs of production.
CAHNRS faculty and students share their thoughts about online education
Summarizing the impact of WSU President Kirk Schulz’s announcement earlier this spring about moving from in person to online courses isn’t easy. From students to faculty, the response to online learning due to Covid-19 varied greatly and emotions ran high in the days that preceded spring break. During this time, students rushed to say goodbye to their friends, seniors tried to soak up the last few days on their beloved WSU campus, and faculty and staff worked tirelessly to adjust their classes for online learning and gave their best advice to their students one last time in person for the semester.
Now, with the end of the spring semester, there is a chance to look back on the last seven weeks and analyze just how online learning compares to in-person education, and how we reacted as a university, a family, and as individuals.
The student perspective
After the announcement of online learning, students had to make a variety of decisions. Some stayed in Pullman, others went home, others started full-time jobs early, and yet others began part-time jobs to support their families. The transition wasn’t always smooth and balancing these responsibilities became difficult for some.
“We had to create an entirely new schedule,” explains Hallie Galbreath, a Agricultural Food and Business Economics major who just graduated. “For me, it’s been interesting because now I’m at home working for my dad on the farm. Trying to work and fit in classes at certain times, sometimes that means sitting in the tractor on my class.”
The students had to adapt. Whether that was with their schedules or their learning styles, they had to figure out how to learn in different ways. They no longer had their classmates to learn with and many did not have as easy access to professors.
While it was tough for some students to adjust, they have been able to thrive once their schedules were adjusted and set. For many like Hallie, this meant working on a family farm while taking classes. For other others, this meant rising to the challenge and learning how to balance their various priorities.
For Luke Williams, senior Agricultural Economics major, he found success by constructing an entirely new schedule that fit in his work, classes, and extra free time. While he adjusted to this balance, he still missed his walk to campus and the structure that comes with in-person education but was excited about the prospect of setting his own timeline every day.
“It’s hard without a rigid schedule,” Williams says. “It’s nice because I am able to be more flexible in my personal life but it’s tougher because my focus is not 100% on school like it would be in a regular school year.”
Williams, who just graduated, understood the importance of staying focused and managed to do so even during tough stretches. He and Galbreath are excited to enter the workforce over this summer. This experience has shown them that they can adapt and push through the challenges that life may throw at them, a skill that will be invaluable during their future careers.
For younger students, this transition caused concern for their classes next semester. Julia Layland, freshman in Agricultural Education, said her welding class and lab were originally to help set her up for her advanced welding class next semester. Now, she does not know how she’ll do in the advanced class when she doesn’t have the basic skills normally taught in her current class.
“Several of my classes are so lab heavy that I have to go back and compound on those skills that were supposed to be learned,” Julia explains. “I think it’s going to be a big challenge.”
Sophomore Agricultural Education major Nicole Snyder shares Laylan’ds concerns, and agrees that the transition back to in-person education may be difficult in the fall. She has felt the loss throughout this semester in her Biology 107 class, where she was unable to perform experiments which are well known by students who have taken this class.
The largest impact felt by students falls with being unable to learn alongside classmates and friends.
“I am a super social learner and the social aspect of school is motivating to me,” Galbreath said. “I learn better from other people and not being able to have that has made it difficult to stay motivated, but also trying to relearn how to learn new information on my own has been tough.”
This lack of connection has been slightly lessened with the help of Zoom, Facetime, phone calls, texts, and other long-distance activities. For every student who misses their friends and classmates, there is another student to pick up the phone and call them. What this time has showed us is the importance of personal connection; the ability to bounce ideas off another person, the chance to ask questions in class, the opportunity to struggle through homework together, and the simple act of being in the same room as friends to learn about something. Regardless of distance, Cougs will find a way to still connect and thrive in whatever situation they find themselves in.
From the faculty’s eyes
Students are not the only ones who faced transition this spring, faculty had to adjust as well. After spending eight weeks teaching in classrooms, getting to know their students, and hosting office hours that were well used, faculty had all this taken away and felt the strain just as much as their students did.
“I love teaching, I love my students, I love my content – but teaching and learning in the middle of a global pandemic has been one of the most challenging aspects of my academic career,” said Caitlin Bletscher, a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Human Development. “As faculty, this is the time when our rubrics, our grading, our assignments are not the bottom line: compassion, grace, and understanding is our bottom line.”
Bletscher was one of many faculty throughout CAHNRS who felt the shift in their teaching styles and in the way they helped their students. Holly Henning-Yeager, a clinical assistant professor in CAHNRS who teaches a senior capstone classes in Agricultural and Food Systems, saw a variety of successes and difficulties as she strove to serve her students.
“I had some anxiety about how to manage the technology, specifically helping students who are not able to join during class time,” Yeager said. “The transition to online teaching offered new challenges and a quick learning curve with the technology. It also offered new opportunities to work with each of the student teams to find ways to work remotely.”
Yeager taught her class of seniors to be adaptive with the changing situation and to stay focused at the tasks at hand. While Yeager worked directly with her students, CAHNRS Associate Dean of Academic Programs Rich Zack did his best to help students and faculty transition in this time and had a bird’s eye view of all that was happening within his department. He helped facilitate trainings for faculty and encouraged them to do their best.
“We have had to learn new ways of doing things and we have had to learn fast. For some, they had to change how they teach in ways that they never would have considered,” Zack said. “Most have risen to the challenge and have done a magnificent job at it.”
On a human level, regardless of success or failures with the transition, the one-on-one atmosphere and tight-knit community of WSU cannot be replaced over the internet. Faculty miss their students, and students miss their teachers. Overall, however, the situation has taught us how to be flexible, to communicate better, and to appreciate all that we have in front of us.
“I do think that this experience will make a lot of us stronger and will make us realize that life and our times together are very precious and should not be squandered,” Zack said.
Some things can’t be replaced
Despite the challenges, our Cougar nation has rose to the task at hand and, while there have been hardships, students have still been able to learn, and faculty have been able to teach. CAHNRS is proud of the way faculty and students have adjusted, and there are things both have learned this semester that can be implemented to better in-person education. There are, however, some things that simply cannot be replaced by online education.
For Layland, the simple ability to see people from around the world is something she cannot replace in her small logging community in western Washington. She loves walking across campus to her classes seeing people from around the world, from different cultures and different walks of life. This college has not only given her the chance to pursue a great major but has expanded her horizons in ways she never thought possible.
Through all these ups and downs, our faculty and staff has found ways to make it through. Communication about expectations has increased, students have learned how to prioritize their time, and faculty has gained invaluable skills that can be taken back to the classroom. Maybe this semester didn’t turn out as expected, but we have finished the school year stronger and more resilient than ever. If anything, our community has been brought closer together while being miles apart.
“Our students are strong, our faculty are strong, our staff are strong, Bletscher said. “We are resilient, Coug Nation – let us lift one another up in support, empower those who are struggling. For me, the end of the semester is not the time to stay silent, not the time to throw our hands up in the air and say ‘Thank God that’s over! Instead, it is the time to check up on our most vulnerable. Check in on your friends, colleagues, and peers. Check in on those living alone, check in on those who had to grab an extra job, check in on those that had to move home with their families, check in on those that lost a loved one. Now is our time to be proactive.”