News Tip: Hurricane Experts on Flooding, Recovery Available to Comment

Hurricane Dorian is expected to hit the southeastern U.S. coast this week. The following Duke experts are available to speak with the media about such topics as preparedness, flooding and recovery.

Also, the following videos are available for broadcast use:

-- An interview with Dr. John Jacob Freiberger, an associate professor of anesthesiology, on the dangers of improper use of generators after a power outage:

-- Nicholas School of the Environment Dean Toddi Steelman on how climate change is affecting hurricanes, and the need to adapt quickly:

Environmental Law/Hog Farms
Ryke Longest (
Longest is a clinical professor at Duke Law and the Nicholas School of the Environment and director of the Duke Environmental Law and Policy Clinic. He previously worked at the North Carolina Department of Justice, where he  advised environmental agencies regarding regulation of swine farms and litigated enforcement actions against more than a dozen animal waste facilities.  

Ana Barros
 ( – Not Available for TV
An expert on hydrometeorology, climate predictability, extreme events and risk assessment of natural hazards, Barros has conducted research on how hurricanes are essential for vegetation growth in the American South, and can also speak on flooding issues and storm surge impacts. A professor of civil and environmental engineering, she and her research team are looking for ways to use Big Data to provide localized forecasts with long lead times.

Lee Ferguson (
One of the lead scientists investigating the Cape Fear GenX contamination issue and the subsequent program to search for other potential pollutants, Ferguson can talk about the effects of flooding and the dangers lurking for contamination from sources such as chemical plants, hog farms and sewer treatment systems.

Hurricane Policy and Recovery
Elizabeth Albright (
Albright studies how policy decisions are made in response to storms and other extreme weather events. She is an assistant professor of the practice of environmental science and policy methods at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment.

Lauren Patterson ( – Not Available for TV
A senior water policy associate at Duke’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, can discuss water infrastructure and flood policy.

Water Quality
Avner Vengosh (
Vengosh, a professor of geochemistry and water quality, has documented environmental issues related to coal ash, which carries arsenic, mercury, lead and selenium, including the coal ash that spilled into North Carolina’s Cape Fear River from a power plant during Hurricane Florence. Vengosh has also presented scientific testimony on coal ash disposal to Congress and his lab has published 13 peer-reviewed studies on it.

Media Contact:
Steve Hartsoe
(919) 681-1515;