Tao Wen, assistant professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, was quoted in a Popular Mechanics article titled, America's Rivers Have Secretly Gotten So Much Saltier. The article highlighted his research paper published in the journal Science of the Total Environment which explored factors contributing to rising salinity and alkalinity in U.S. watersheds. Wen and his collaborators found human activities as major contributors to the salinity of U.S. rivers, while rising alkalinity was mainly attributed more to natural processes than human activities. The Popular Mechanics article was also picked up by Yahoo! Canada.