FORT COLLINS, Colo. (AP) – A Colorado State University associate professor says there’s no strings attached to $2 million that Shell Oil Co. is giving the school to study how to reclaim land after it has been disturbed by oil and natural gas development.

The money, in the form of an endowed chair, will pay for research by associate professor Mark Paschke. The Coloradoan reports Paschke is looking into how disturbances from oil and gas development change plant communities and how weed-infested disturbed land can be revegetated with native plants. He says Shell won’t review or influence CSU’s findings.

In 1976, CSU began ecological restoration research in the Piceance Basin. In 2008, CSU and Shell partnered to build on that work to make recommendations regarding the long-term effects of approaches to revegetation.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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