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Graduate Degree Programs
Climate & Energy


Climate change is one of the most pressing issues of our day and is directly linked with the amount and types of energy we currently use and will use. Projected changes in climate will impact critical ecosystems, create challenges for coping with more frequent extreme weather events, and negatively influence health around the world. Those with the fewest resources - particularly people of color, low-income and indigenous communities - will be the most affected.

Climate change and energy use are wicked problems that are challenging to resolve due to incomplete information and different perspectives on causes, impacts and solutions. Tackling these challenges requires a transdisciplinary approach, which involves knowledge integration across academic disciplines and with practitioners, managers and other decision makers. The Climate and Energy (C&E) Study Area involves faculty ranging from climate scientists, human dimension experts, ecologists, engineers, landscape designers, policy experts, and renewable energy specialists all of whom are actively involved in addressing climate and energy issues. C&E GPES students work with faculty from multiple disciplines and perspectives to tackle a wide range of research questions related to climate change and energy.

Examples of the tools and concepts that are commonly used in Climate and Energy study area include:

  • Atmospheric Science
  • Biomass and Bioenergy
  • Carbon Storage and Cycles
  • Climate Change
  • Energy Justice, Planning and Policy
  • Life Cycle and Geospatial Analyses
  • Renewable Energy and Storage
  • Sustainable Materials and Waste Management
  • Technoeconomic Analysis
  • Urban Sustainability and Resilience

Participating Faculty in Climate and Energy (C&E)

Name Email Research Keywords
Aidan Ackerman visual impact assessment, landscape adaptation and mitigation, 3D modeling, rendering, virtual reality, digital fabrication, GIS, BIM, CAD
Colin Beier climate science, natural climate solutions, forest carbon, landscape modeling, greenhouse gas accounting, climate policy
Josh Cousins political-industrial ecology, energy transitions, climate change adaptation and mitigation, energy and climate politics and planning
Paul Crovella net zero construction, energy efficiency, embodied energy in construction
Klaus Doelle alternative energy (gasification, fermentation), biomass processing, hydropower, system process design and development
Martin Dovciak climate change impacts on forest ecosystems, climate-vegetation relations and feedbacks, forest dynamics, microclimate
John Drake climate change, forest carbon, tree growth, managing ecosystems for carbon
Theodore Endreny modeling urban heat adaptation, nature-based solutions, building energy loads, i-Tree Cool Air & Energy software development
Andrea Feldpausch-Parker energy communication, public participation in energy systems, energy democracy, decision-making
Anne Godfrey emergent technologies and decentralized energy systems, urban design, energy independence, energy justice, equitable energy access
Cole Gross  Sustainable ecosystem management, soil health, soil carbon, ecosystem carbon cycling, greenhouse gas fluxes, soil-carbon-climate feedbacks, soil-root interactions, agroforestry
Robin Kimmerer indigenous peoples, adaptation, plant ecology
Charles Kroll hydrologic change, drought assessment, systems engineering, ecosystem service assessment, decision support systems
Deepak Kumar bio-based circular economy, bioplastics, fermentation, enzymatic hydrolysis, bioprocess modeling, techno-economic analysis
Valerie Luzadis social-ecological systems, ecological economics and policy, climate and energy transitions and values
Robert Malmsheimer bioenergy policy, bioeconomy, forests and climate change, forest carbon accounting, translating peer-reviewed science for policymakers
Huiting Mao atmospheric chemistry, air quality, climate change
Michael Mikulewicz Just/Equitable transitions, Energy democracy, Energy justice, Fuel/Energy poverty, Urban sustainability, UNFCCC process, Critical theory (political economy, political ecology, feminist & queer theory), Participatory methods
Tim Morin carbon cycle, methane, carbon sequestration, micrometeorology, ecosystem modeling
Giorgos Mountrakis geospatial modeling, remote sensing, climatic predictions, machine learning
Bahram Salehi large scale remote sensing of wetlands, forests, permafrost and soil moisture, big data analysis, environmental monitoring, UAV
Kim Schulz climate change impacts on aquatic ecosystems, lake stratification, adaptation to climate change, lake source cooling
Gary Scott renewable products and energy; system modeling and optimization; biotechnology for industry
Richard Ross Shaker Environmental & sustainability indicators, sustainable development, landscape ecology, global change; ecological restoration, applied statistics, spatial analysis & modeling
Steve Shaw influence of climate change on hydrology, processes controlling flood and drought, resilience in water infrastructure
John Stella riparian and stream ecology, ecohydrology, restoration, watershed management, ecological modeling, dendroecology, arid-land ecosystems
Wendong Tao waste-to-energy, anaerobic digestion, greenhouse gas from wastewater treatment, slow pyrolysis
Obste Therasme life cycle assessment, sustainable energy systems, biomass for biofuels, energy and bioproducts
Timothy Volk bioenergy, biomass, energy crops, life cycle assessment, bioeconomy, renewable energy
Endong Wang sustainable infrastructure systems, life cycle performance of structure systems, building energy efficiency, decision making
Yaqi You sustainable food-energy-water nexus, waste streams-to-valuable resources, biomass, greenhouse gas emission
Nathan Young Hydrology, hydrogeology, ecohydrology, soil physics