August 8, 2019

(Ankeny, Iowa – August 8, 2019) The Soil and Water Conservation Society (SWCS) would like to congratulate Dr. Leonard J. Lane, a scientist and engineer who has advanced conservation science, for receiving the 2019 Hugh Hammond Bennett Award. The Hugh Hammond Bennett Award is the Society’s most prestigious award and recognizes extraordinary national and international accomplishments in the conservation of soil, water, and related natural resources.

Lane’s career began in 1965 with a position as a hydrologic technician for the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Tucson, Arizona. After earning his PhD, he worked for the Los Alamos National Laboratory where the problems associated with hydrology and sediment contaminated with radioactive waste became a primary research interest. In 1984, Lane returned to Tucson to work for the USDA ARS until his retirement in 2002. For 10 years following his retirement, he worked as principal of L.J. Lane Consulting.

Lane has made many notable contributions to science, including developing a method to estimate transmission losses (streamflow losses due to infiltration in channel bed and banks) in ephemeral stream channels and developing several procedures to route flood hydrographs in ephemeral streams. He also worked diligently to develop procedures to relate statistics for geometric correspondence of simulation model watershed topography to the resulting hydrograph goodness-of-fit-statistics for simulated runoff, cooperated in the development of advanced overland flow and upland erosion models, and led efforts to develop efficient methods of parameter estimation for coupled runoff-erosion models. Additionally, Lane helped develop time series techniques to analyze historical global change data to separate anthropogenic variations in temperatur­­e, precipitation, etc. from natural fluctuation and variability; added to the knowledge of floods and flood frequency in the southwestern United States through long-term studies; and contributed to the development or improvement of the following models: CREAMS (Chemicals, Runoff, and Erosions from Agricultural Management Systems), SPUR Basin Scale Model, HEM (Hillside Erosion Model), and WEPP (Water Erosion Prediction Project). Lane also fostered the science of natural resource conservation for sustainability by supervising a cadre of PhD scientists in watershed hydrology and erosion prediction that have gone on to influential careers, in universities and agencies, both in the United States and abroad.

Lane was recognized at the 74th SWCS International Annual Conference Awards Luncheon on July 30, 2019, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


About SWCS

With more than 3000 members around the world, the Soil and Water Conservation Society (SWCS) is a nonprofit scientific and educational organization that serves as an advocate for conservation professionals and for science-based conservation practice, programs, and policy.

The SWCS mission is to foster the science and art of natural resource conservation. We work to discover, develop, implement and constantly improve conservation practices and systems that sustain the productive capacity of the land while protecting environmental quality.

We pursue our mission through a combination of research, education and advocacy aimed at promoting state-of-the-art conservation practices and science-based conservation policy.

For More Information:

Clare Lindahl, CEO
Soil and Water Conservation Society
515-289-2331 ext. 113

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