Woltemade Faculty ImageChristopher Woltemade

Office:108 Shearer Hall

Curriculum Vitae:download as pdf


PhD (1993) Geography, University of Wisconsin
MS (1989) Geography, University of Wisconsin
MS (1989) Water Resources Management, University of Wisconsin
BA (1987) Geography, Ohio Wesleyan University


I have primary interests in water resources management, hydrology, geomorphology, and stream and wetland restoration. My current research projects reflect these interests.

I am currently working on monitoring stream improvements on Larry's Creek, Lycoming county Pennsylvania, an area that was significantly impacted by channel straightening during the 1950s construction of State Route 287. In October 2012 a section of stream was re-built to mitigate bank erosion and includes bioengineering efforts such as "soil burritos" and toe wood. Post-project monitoring includes documentation of channel changes such as riffle-pool development and bank erosion.

I am also developing a research effort on the Navarro River in northern California. The Navarro was historically famous for runs of coho salmon and steelhead trout, but their range and abundance have been greatly reduced, in part due to warm stream temperatures. The research will address how riparian shade and irrigation withdrawals affect water temperatures throughout Anderson Creek, a key Navarro River tributary.

Other recent research efforts include:

  • Work with Kurt Fuellhart to study of the economic costs and savings of various residential water conservation programs in Shippensburg, PA. See: Woltemade, C. J. and K. Fuellhart. 2013. Economic efficiency of residential water conservation programs in a Pennsylvania public water utility. The Professional Geographer. 65(1):116-129.

  • Work with Erick Ammon (M.S. Geoenvironmental Studies student) to evaluate the impact of soil compaction in residential lawns on infiltration and runoff rates. See:Woltemade, C.J. 2010. Impact of residential soil disturbance on infiltration rate and stormwater runoff. Journal of the American Water Resources Association. 46(4):700-711.

  • Work with Jinnieth Woodward (M.S. Geoenvironmental Studies 2006) on the water quality benefits of a small restored wetland in Shippensburg, PA. With 2 years of monitoring data we found that the wetland removes over 60% of the nitrate that enters the wetland from a limestone spring. See: Woltemade, C.J. and J. Woodward. 2008. Nitrate removal in a restored spring-fed wetland, Pennsylvania, USA. Journal of the American Water Resources Association. 44(1):222-234.

I am also involved in a number of projects in the immediate Shippensburg area, focusing primarily on the Burd Run watershed. During 2001-2003 I served as co-Principal Director (with Brian Jaymes, Cumberland County Conservation District) in the effort to restore the Burd Run stream channel, riparian zone, and floodplain wetlands within the Shippensburg Township Park adjacent to the SU campus. The project was supported by a $129,000 Environmental Stewardship and Watershed Protection grant from Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Growing Greener Program.

Much of the effort to work within the Burd Run watershed is the outgrowth of the "Burd Run Interdisciplinary Watershed Research Laboratory," established in 1999 with funding from the National Science Foundation. The Research Laboratory includes field and laboratory equipment that is available for faculty-student research.

Most of my research and teaching cuts across disciplinary lines, linking together elements from sciences such as geology, geomorphology, hydrology and aquatic biology. My approach is to better understand the biophysical system, but also to develop applications for planning, management, and policy.

Teaching & Research Interests

  • Hydrology
  • Water Resources Management
  • Geomorphology
  • Stream Restoration


ESS 110: Introduction to Geology
GEO 226: Hydrology
GEO 446: Water Resources Management
GEO 522: Geoenvironmental Hydrology



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