Jordan Allen

Jordan Allen

Years participated in RESESS:

An Overview

Major: Environmental Science
Academic Affiliation: Savannah State University
Research Mentors: Val Sloan, UNAVCO, Jennifer Roberts, and Blaine Pezold, Bayou Land RC&D
Writing Mentor: Val Sloan, UNAVCO
Social Science Mentors: Kristina Peterson and Shirley Laska UNO-CHART
Community Mentor: Basile Dardar, UL


Jordan grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, and moved to the small town of Cuthbert, GA during 8th grade. He attends Savannah State University and majors in Environmental Science. He grew up as a Boy Scout, which sparked a great interest in the outdoors. During his first year in college he took Introduction to Environmental Science, which opened his eyes to environmental issues. He is especially interested in climate change, geology, and energy sustainability. He enjoys spending time with family, laughing, working out, and doing community service.


Identifying high concentration areas of fecal coliform in Bayou Terrebonne, Louisiana: Measurements and a community's perspective

Non-point source water pollutants from urban runoff are a cause for concern along Bayou Terrebonne, southeastern Louisiana. This bayou, or small river, is on the EPA 303(d) list of impaired water bodies for having levels of fecal coliform frequently exceeding 200 cfu/100mL. In this study, we measured fecal coliform bacteria levels at 21 locations along the bayou between the cities of Thibodaux and Houma during the summer of 2012. Samples were collected biweekly for two months at 16 locations along the Upper Bayou Terrebonne, and weekly for one month at five Middle Bayou Terrebonne sites. Results show that fecal coliform levels vary substantially along the bayou on days without rain, from below 200 cfu/100mL to over 6000 cfu/100mL. Levels of E. coli are extremely high at all sites after rainfall, and commonly exceed 6000 cfu/mL. Sources appeared to be pipes draining from buildings, and are also speculated by community members to include broken residential septic systems.

Using Participatory Action Research (PAR), community-based research methods, and community involvement, we conducted a survey (150 respondents) and interviewed community members about their uses and clean-up approaches for Bayou Terrebonne. We found that residents along Upper and Middle Bayou Terrebonne use the stream for fishing and occasional recreation. The levels of fecal coliform are high enough to present health risks to people using the water recreationally. Results show that in densely populated areas, the bayou has dangerously high concentration areas of fecal coliform. The memory of earlier uses and continued sense of attachment suggest a willingness to implement changes necessary to cleanup.