Biogeochemistry & Environmental Quality Research Group Clemson University

The Biogeochemistry & Environmental Quality Research Group is located at the Belle W. Baruch Institute of Coastal Ecology and Forest Sciences in Georgetown, South Carolina.  The Belle W. Baruch Institute of Coastal Ecology and Forest Science (BICEFS) began as the Belle W. Baruch Forest Science Institute in the early 1970s.  The Institute is located on 15,000 acres of forest and marsh at Hobcaw Barony, owned by the Baruch Foundation. The Institute’s mission is to conduct research and education programs focused on the ecology and management of the natural resources of coastal regions, and our programs cover a wide range of topics from water quality and climate change and their impacts on forest management and ecology to improved community development through sustainable growth.

The Institute recently (2009) finished a renovation/building program to improve and expand the Institute's capabilities to support the growing need for coastal environmental research. The construction project refurbished the existing 7,000 square-foot office and laboratory facility for research on water quality, forest productivity, and the impact of urban growth on the environment. It also added an approximately 12,000 square-foot conference and education facility equipped with two-way video conferencing capabilities for distance education.  The Institute has office space for up to 14 resident faculty, visiting faculty, and visiting scientists. In addition there is a large meeting room for workshops and symposia as well as conference rooms for small meetings.

The facilities meet LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification requirements set by the U.S. Green Building Council. Carpeting, paints and construction material produced from natural materials with low volatile organic compounds were used. And the facilities were awarded a regional honorable mention award from the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers Inc. for the HVAC system's energy efficiency. In addition, landscaping for the new facility demonstrates storm water management techniques and the use of coastal plants for home landscapes.

BICEFS Laboratories: 

Three dedicated laboratories with over 1,200 square feet including an instrument room, an organic laboratory with a 4 feet perchloric acid fume hood, a numerous general-purpose laboratory with a 6 feet perchloric fume hood are located in the newly refurbished building. An auxiliary building with over 2,000 square feet contains a storage room with a stainless steel counter and sink, a tissue and soil grinding room that has a Wiley mill below an exhaust hood, and a shop area that contains the drying oven. Representative instrumentation that is pertinent to the proposed research project is listed below:


  • Beckman Coulter LS13-320 Laser Diffraction Particle Size Analyzer
  • IDEXX – Quanti-Tray Sealer for Total Coliform, E.Coli and Enterococci
  • SYSTEA – Easy Chem Descreet Analyzer
  • Shimadzu RF-5301 PC Spectrofluorophotometer with Panorama2 software
  • Shimadzu UV-1800 Spectrophotometer
  • Shimadzu TOC-V CPN Total Organic Carbon Analyzer
  • Shimadzu TNM-1 Total Nitrogen Measuring Unit
  • Shimadzu SSM-5000A Solid Sample Module
  • Shimadzu GC2014 Green House Gas Analyzer
  • Agilent 7890A GC with 220 Ion Trap Mass Spectrometry
  • CDS 5200 Pyrolysis Unit
  • AnalytikJena MultiX® 2500 TOX/EOX Analyzer

Biogeochemistry & Environmental Quality Research Group

Clemson University

Last Updated: 1/30/2021

By Kenneth Chow