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Johnson and Graves working together.

The Impact of Smoking and E-Cigarette Use on Asthma (DukeUNCTTS | May 6, 2024)

IE’s Neasha Graves speaks about the impact of smoking for national Asthma + Allergy Awareness Month.

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trees and blue sky

Legislation Would Address Harmful Bioenergy Emissions, Air Pollution (National Wildlife Federation | Apr. 17, 2024)

New legislation cites IE research on underreported bioenergy emissions.

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UNC Cleantech Summit celebrates 10th anniversary with banner line-up of speakers, panelists

Around 1,200 attendees registered for this year’s event, many of whom traveled to North Carolina.

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The Impact of Smoking and E-Cigarette Use on Asthma (DukeUNCTTS | May 6, 2024)

IE’s Neasha Graves speaks about the impact of smoking for national Asthma + Allergy Awareness Month. Read More

Legislation Would Address Harmful Bioenergy Emissions, Air Pollution (National Wildlife Federation | Apr. 17, 2024)

New legislation cites IE research on underreported bioenergy emissions. Read More

UNC Cleantech Summit celebrates 10th anniversary with banner line-up of speakers, panelists

Around 1,200 attendees registered for this year’s event, many of whom traveled to North Carolina. Read More

Giving a second life to campus trees through sculpture 

UNC junior Sarah Dean narrates her experience as an artist and environmentalist at the event. Read More

Ecological Restoration Is a Big Money Industry (Sci NC | Apr. 26, 2024)

A study from IE shows the restoration market has a big impact on the U.S. economy. Read More

Second annual research symposium highlights sustainability research across Carolina

Researchers led lightning talks showcasing sustainability research across UNC-Chapel Hill.  Read More

Sustainability and the environment (UNC.edu | Apr. 22, 2024)

At Carolina, faculty, staff and students are seeking and creating solutions to environmental issues. Read More

Hsu selected as one of six U.S. scientists to scope special IPCC report on cities and climate change (DDL | Apr. 16, 2024)

Hsu has been selected as one of six U.S. scientists to participate in IPCC report. Read More

Join the BatPack to Help Conserve Bats

International Bat Appreciation Day is Apr. 17! Join the BatPack today! #EarthMonth #CitSciMonth Read More

Happy #EarthMonth!

See all of the ways Carolina is celebrating Earth Month. Read More

NASA’s Earth Day toolkit features IE’s Lake Observations by Citizen Scientists and Satellites program

Click the “Citizen Science” button to learn more. #EarthMonth #CitSciMonth Read More

Institute for the Environment receives record number of gifts, lands on leaderboard for GiveUNC 

The Institute placed fourth on the Unit Leaderboard and seventh overall for total dollars raised.  Read More

IE program brings N.C. students and teachers into state parks for meaningful outdoor science learning  

N.C. teachers and park rangers create outdoor learning experiences for students. Read More

Cleantech program students help plan summit (UNC.edu | Mar. 21, 2024)

Three of the 15 Institute for the Environment interns share what excites them about cleantech. Read More

Student Spotlight: Nicole Coursey ’26

Nicole Coursey shares more about her time spent in Europe and at the Outer Banks Field Site. Read More

New study quantifies health impacts from oil and gas flaring in U.S. 

New study finds pollution from oil and gas flaring results in $7.4 billion in health damages. Read More

Help us reach our GiveUNC goal on Mar. 26!

Mark your calendars for Mar. 26 and help us exceed our fundraising goals for GiveUNC! Read More

10th UNC Cleantech Summit expected to be largest yet 

The two-day event will promote cleantech as an economic driver and a career choice for UNC students. Read More

Where are they now? Kristina Hefferle ’23

Kristina Hefferle ’23 discusses her path to amphibian ecology research technician at UGA. Read More

Outreach manager protects NC families (UNC.edu | Feb. 19, 2024)

Neasha Graves provides information and resources to communities about environmental health hazards. Read More

Student Spotlight: Hallie Turner ’24

Hallie Turner ’24 decided to study environmental science to solve complex modern problems. Read More

New study by researchers at UNC-Chapel Hill finds chemical composition of U.S. air pollution changed over time  

Targeted strategies may reduce specific pollutants for different regions of the U.S. Read More

Students fly drones, study hydrology during adventurous study abroad program in Ecuador

Ecuador and its diverse landscapes transformed into a living classroom for some UNC students. Read More

Why is it bad for a river to be straight? (Sci NC | Feb. 6, 2024)

IE’s Rada Petric talks about the importance of tracking wildlife in watershed restoration. Read More

Registration Open for the 10th Annual UNC Cleantech Summit

Get your ticket today! Read More

Lessons in Field Work (Endeavors | Jan. 19, 2024)

Outer Banks Field Site students gained hands-on experience working with a variety of organisms. Read More

All the Light We Cannot See (Endeavors | Jan. 18, 2024)

Outer Banks Field Site students study how artificial light at night affects wildlife. Read More

Capstone program gives undergraduates research, consulting experience

In December, undergraduate students in the environmental capstone program presented at the Capstone Showcase where the UNC campus, community members and clients came to hear about the innovative research and recommendations the students worked on over the fall semester. Environmental Read More

CMAS Center, partners featured in special issue of EM Magazine

Several researchers from the UNC Institute for the Environment contributed to the special issue. Read More

22nd annual CMAS Conference celebrated milestones and giants of the field

The event featured a celebration of CMAQ and the lives of two giants of the CMAS community. Read More

News Archive

2023

2023 Year-in-Review

Please enjoy our year-in-review highlighting our top news stories of the year. Read More

Ecological restoration industry generated $9.6 billion and supported more than 53,000 jobs, according to new UNC study

Wetland and stream restoration market is a full-blown industry, according to study. Read More

Urban habitats mitigate coastal flooding impacts, UNC study finds

The study found urban estuarine habitats to be effective at permanently removing nitrogen. Read More

IE Center explored droughts, floods, infectious disease and extreme temperatures at 7th annual retreat

The retreat convenes people from a broad range of backgrounds to advance research.   Read More

A home near campus

We’ve moved and are excited to advance our work closer to campus. Come see us at Carolina Square. Read More

Carolina global leader in oyster reef research, study finds

Carolina and several researchers are internationally prominent in the field of oyster reef research. Read More

Amid abundant growth, IE launches new website

The new website features the inspiring stories of our people, programs and projects. Read More

Meet the 2023 Molchanov Scholars

Over the summer, eight UNC students were paired with environmental organizations across the state to build their skills for a future in an environmental field through internships. Read More

UNC research team awarded $1.5 million NASA grant to explore disparities and solutions to urban heat stress and climate justice in U.S.  

Researchers will harness the power of satellite remote sensing data and machine learning. Read More

Join us for University Research Week Oct. 23-27

Join us at University Research Week for a host of events on the environment. Read More

Darden ’76, ’92 receives Distinguished Alumnus Award on University Day (UNC News | Oct. 12, 2023)

UNC IE Board of Visitors member Tom Darden was honored on University Day. Read More

Champion Sustainability Game Recap

The Champion Sustainability Game celebrated Carolina’s many sustainability accomplishments. Read More

UNC Research Impact in North Carolina (UNC Research | Oct. 11, 2023)

UNC’s research touches every part of North Carolina. Discover the benefits to our state. Read More

Geo Interns install air quality monitoring stations in Robeson County

In July, six participants in the Geo Interns program built solar-powered air quality monitoring stations at two locations of the Boys and Girls Club of the Lumbee Tribe. Read More

Students immersed in urban planning, clean energy on six-week European Burch Seminar

This summer 20 UNC students spent six weeks in Europe studying urban planning and clean energy. Read More

Meet BOT Chair John P. Preyer (UNC News | Sept. 26, 2023)

The new leader of the University’s Board of Trustees calls his service to Carolina a labor of love. Read More

Measuring Water from Space (Endeavors | Sept. 14, 2023)

A new NASA satellite is recording the first global survey of Earth’s water cycle. Read More

Bat to Nature: UNC study aims to track bat populations and break down misconceptions about this keystone species

Bats are a keystone species in our ecosystem and contribute to the success of our economy. Read More

Naess marks 20th trip with students to St. John to study coral reefs

For the past 20 years, students from UNC-Chapel Hill have traveled to St. John, the smallest of the three U.S. Virgin Islands, gaining first-hand experience studying the diverse marine ecosystem that surrounds the island.   The program began in 2002 as Read More

Carolina Strong: Resources for the Carolina Community

No one at Carolina is in it alone. Keep reading to find tips and advice from mental health experts on how to process traumatic events and support all Tar Heels, including yourself. Read More

UNC hosts ITM, a prominent international air quality modeling forum to advance global air quality

The 39th annual International Technical Meeting on Air Pollution Modelling and its Applications (ITM) hosted by the UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) brought more than 100 scientists and stakeholders from across the world to the Friday Conference Center in Read More

Engaging communities in Carolina research (UNC Research | Aug. 8, 2023)

The Center for Public Engagement with Science gets North Carolinians involved in UNC-Chapel Hill research — including a unique project with NASA that educates volunteers about lakes in their own communities. Read More

For people on private wells, race and income often determine whether water is safe to drink (NC Newsline | Aug. 7, 2023)

Roughly 2.4 million North Carolinians rely on private wells for their drinking water. But unlike public water systems, private wells are not regulated under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act. Read More

A new, long-term study by researchers at UNC-Chapel Hill finds nitrogen fixation hotspots in Atlantic seaweed

Sargassum mats in the Atlantic ocean. Photo by John McCord. A new study by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill examined nitrogen fixation among diazotrophs—microorganisms that can convert nitrogen into usable form for other plants and Read More

New UNC study identifies disparities in testing and treating well water among low-income, BIPOC households in N.C.

Photo credit: “A Tall Glass of Water” by StuffNThings is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/?ref=openverse. North Carolina leads the nation for most households relying on private wells as a primary source Read More

From U.S. Marine Corps to UNC-Chapel Hill, Walton brings drone expertise to environmental research

Troy Walton is one of the newest senior research associates at the UNC Institute for the Environment, leading research and growth in the Carolina Drone Lab, where he is helping to pioneer the use of drones to study ecosystems and Read More

UNC students turn downed trees into art

Since the fall of 2021, the Carolina Tree Heritage (CTH) and Jim Hirschfield’s wood sculpture class have given downed trees on UNC-Chapel Hill’s campus new life. CTH provides students in the introductory wood sculpting course with wood from trees that Read More

New UNC study quantifies disparity among minority communities exposed to traffic-related air pollution across the U.S.

Traffic-related air pollution is a pervasive problem across the United States. Vehicle emissions are highest near major roadways with around 19% of the U.S. population living in the vicinity of a major roadway. In more densely populated states, like California, Read More

SURF grant advances UNC microplastics research in western North Carolina

For Chloe Hall, receiving summer funding for her research meant she got to return to the place she loves—the Appalachian Mountains. Read More

Joint study from UNC and Boston University finds air pollution from oil and gas production responsible for $77 billion in annual U.S. health damages including thousands of early deaths, childhood asthma cases nationwide

These health impacts affected communities in states with high oil and gas production, as well as states with limited or no gas activity, underlining the need for comprehensive regulatory action to protect Americans from the pollutants generated by this sector. Read More

UNC dual-degree student teams up with Institute researcher to validate communications strategies to combat climate change in North Carolina

A lifelong resident of Apex, NC, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill dual-degree student Jessica Reid watched her community experience rapid growth. Construction made way for new roads, homes, businesses, shopping and everything that comes with an influx of Read More

Remembering Adel Hanna

Adel Fahim Hanna, 77, founding director of the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Center for Environmental Modeling for Policy Development (CEMPD) and Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) died April 23, 2023. Hanna a beloved professor, colleague and mentor served the Read More

New UNC study quantifies $562M in financial risk from Hurricane Florence using novel modeling approach that evaluates risk of mortgage default and property abandonment

When Hurricane Florence made landfall on North Carolina’s coast in 2018, it brought record rainfall causing catastrophic flooding and damages to communities across the eastern portion of the state. Estimating the financial impacts of household flooding is complex because direct Read More

Thank you for helping the UNC Institute for the Environment have the “best day ever” for GiveUNC

The UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) had the “best day ever” Mar. 28 for GiveUNC—Carolina’s 24-hour giving challenge. The Institute recorded its most successful GiveUNC effort to date, raising more than $375,000 from 110 donors in 24 hours. GiveUNC, Read More

IE BOV Member Seymour ’81 spends semester as Yale’s McCluskey Visiting Fellow in Conservation; selected to U.S. Department of State’s Science Envoy

Every Monday morning last fall, Frances Seymour boarded a train from Washington, D.C. to New Haven, CT, a five-hour trek that delivered her to Yale University where she was a Dorothy S. McCluskey Visiting Fellow in Conservation at the Yale Read More

Ninth annual UNC Cleantech Summit to feature leaders in business, public sector for keynotes, panels and networking

The 2023 UNC Cleantech Summit is set to take place on Mar. 27 and 28 at UNC’s Friday Center for Continuing Education in Chapel Hill, NC. The annual event is open to students, educators and members of the cleantech industry. Read More

Kryston examines sanitation in NC communities with IE’s inaugural Environmental Justice Graduate Research Award

Amy Kryston, the inaugural recipient of the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Environmental Justice Graduate Research Award, studies the relationship between on-site sanitation, health and social drivers of health in North Carolina communities. “Sanitation is a human right,” Kryston, a Read More

Help us reach our GiveUNC goal on Mar. 28!

Mark your calendars for Mar. 28 and help the UNC Institute for the Environment exceed our fundraising goals for GiveUNC—UNC-Chapel Hill’s 24-hour giving challenge. The Institute has consistently landed on the leaderboards in multiple categories for number of gifts raised Read More

Carolina’s field sites featured on UNC.edu

At field sites in North Carolina’s mountains, coastline, cities and even the tropical rain forests of Thailand, undergraduates have a semester-long opportunity to explore real-world issues through a combination of coursework, field trips, research projects and internships with local organizations. Read More

The potential of mentorship, Graves and Johnson forge powerful bond

Neasha Graves enthusiastically shows a model of a human airway fashioned from a toilet paper roll, rubber bands and pink and red foam craft sheets to Mitierra Johnson. Graves is simulating a healthy airway and contrasting it with the airway Read More

One Tree Planted Partners with Vets to Drones and Carolina Drone Lab (One Tree Planted | Jan. 27, 2023)

Vets to Drones, One Tree Planted, and UNC Chapel Hill’s Carolina Drone Lab are proud to announce the creation of the Veterans in the Forest Program, a partnership to train veterans and provide on-the-job experience in drone-based forest monitoring technology. Read More

Hunting for Hemlocks (Endeavors | Jan. 20, 2023)

“It’s just a little further,” Ken Donny-Clark promises. The UNC-Chapel Hill senior crawls on his hands and knees, pushing aside branches and small plants as he squeezes his way to his destination. After a few more minutes of struggling through Read More

Desperately Seeking Salamanders (Endeavors | Jan. 18, 2023)

About an hour after the sun sets over the ridgeline of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Kristina Hefferle and Leah Morrissey hike to a nearby creek in total darkness under a tangle of rhododendron, dog hobble, and towering pine trees. The Read More

All Creatures Great and Small (UNC Research | Jan. 17, 2023)

As the last remnants of the sun streak the sky with purple and peach hues on this hot summer night, the trees by the Eno River fall silent. It’s one of those Carolina evenings that’s so humid, it’s as if Read More

How to live more sustainably in 2023 (UNC News | Jan. 12, 2023)

It’s possible to go green even when surrounded by Carolina blue. UNC Institute for the Environment Director Mike Piehler is an expert on how human activity affects natural systems and is helping the University be more green as Carolina’s chief Read More

UNC Institute for the Environment surpasses $12 million goal in historic Campaign for Carolina

The UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) has surpassed its $12 million campaign goal in Carolina’s campus-wide fundraising campaign. The Campaign for Carolina, launched in 2017, raised a record-setting $5 billion before closing Dec. 31, 2022. In addition to public Read More

Arter, Gorelick named AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellows

Left: Calvin Arter; Right: David Gorelick Former University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill postdoctoral researchers Calvin Arter and David Gorelick recently were named to the 50th cohort of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Read More

‘It is good to be back in person,’ CMAS Center hosts 21st annual conference to tackle complex air quality issues

The Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) Center has served the air quality modeling and analysis community for more than two decades by providing access to open-source software that can be used to analyze air quality impacts and develop policies Read More

2022

Using drones to study the Galápagos Islands, Cohen adds to summer study abroad experience

The Galápagos Islands’ unique landscape and topography provide the backdrop for a five-week program with the UNC Study Abroad Office and a partnership between UNC-Chapel Hill’s Center for Galápagos Studies and Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ) in Ecuador.    https://youtu.be/0YvPCod44qM?si=arAmo21hEH5XX4FS Read More

Institute awarded $2.3 million from National Science Foundation to implement and study program empowering Latino and Indigenous youth to seek solutions to climate impacts

UNC researchers, collaborators in NC and WA receive funding to engage diverse youth in exploring climate impacts and solutions in their communities. The Center for Public Engagement with Science in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment (UNC Read More

Haine named Outstanding Informal Educator by RePowering Schools

In May 2022, Dana Haine, K-12 science education manager for the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Center for Public Engagement with Science, was awarded the 2022 Outstanding Informal Educator Award from RePowering Schools. REpowering Schools is a national non-profit organization dedicated to building Read More

Meet the 2022 Molchanov Scholars

…made possible by the Pavel Molchanov Scholars Program, an endowed internship program that provides students with a $5,000 stipend to support their summer employment. Since its inception in 2019, 18… Read More

Robeson County high school students gain experience in geology and marine science through IE’s Summer Geoscience Internship Program

Photo by Matthew Ng This past summer, high school students from Robeson County spent time on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus to participate in the Summer Geoscience Internship program, a five-week program that allows prospective college students to gain experience in Read More

IE, CE3 launch Energy Transition Initiative

The UNC Institute for the Environment and UNC School of Law’s Center for Climate, Energy, Environment & Economics (CE3) have teamed up to launch a new program called the Energy Transition Initiative (ETI). The program, led by UNC law professor and director Read More

CMAS Conference returns to Friday Center for its 21st event Oct. 17-19

The Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) Conference will return in person this fall after more than two years of virtual programming. The conference hosted by the Institute for the Environment will be held Oct. 17-19 at UNC’s Friday Center.   The CMAS Read More

Institute launches environmental justice graduate research award; Kryston inaugural recipient

The inaugural recipient of the environmental justice graduate research award is Amy Kryston, a graduate student at the Gillings School of Global Public Health. In the summer of 2020, the UNC Institute for the Environment reconstituted its diversity, equity and Read More

UNC-Chapel student team wins inaugural North Carolina Sea Grant’s Coastal Resilience Team Competition

In March, a team of UNC-Chapel Hill students was named the winners of the North Carolina Sea Grant’s first Coastal Resilience Team Competition for their research on ecosystem function in New Bern. Now, led by Anne Smiley, the team will Read More

Meet the Inaugural CRCE Scholars

The Center for Resilient Communities and Environment Scholars Program, led by Philip Berke, director of Center for Resilient Communities and Environment and research professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning, recognizes individuals who have made a significant contribution to the development Read More

MEDIA INVITED: Teachers from NC communities impacted by PFAS contamination to convene at UNC to create health-focused science lessons

Media invited Eight high school science teachers from five North Carolina counties will convene at UNC June 20-22 to design lessons about an emerging environmental contaminant, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). First developed in the 1950s, PFAS are found in Read More

New UNC-Chapel Hill study finds stormwater infrastructure inundation contributes to high tide flooding in coastal communities

High tide flooding via the stormwater network on Front Street in Beaufort, North Carolina on November 8, 2021. Images by the Sunny Day Flooding Project. Throughout human history, coastal residents have enjoyed the benefits of living near the ocean while balancing Read More

IE partners with the Center for Hybrid Approaches in Solar Energy to engage STEM teachers in learning about chemistry innovations in the energy sector

Energy Literacy Fellows, Denise Renfro and Julia Little, who teach in Fayetteville, look for bubbles as they use battery power to split water into hydrogen and oxygen gas. Fourteen STEM teachers from across North Carolina convened in the Blue Makerspace in Carmichael Read More

Kathleen Gray, Ph.D. – Improving Environmental Risk Communication Through Interdisciplinary Collaborations

Kathleen Gray, Ph.D., of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (UNC) has long held a passion for increasing understanding of environmental exposures in communities affected by contamination. After completing her undergraduate degree, she worked with community-based organizations in southern Louisiana Read More

Transitioning to a Low Carbon Economy—UNC’s eighth annual Clean Tech Summit advocates for economic and environmental advancement

The UNC Cleantech Summit took place in person on March 29-30, drawing more than 800 industry leaders, students, and policymakers from across the Southeast to Chapel Hill, North Carolina. This year’s theme, “Transitioning to a Low Carbon Economy,” gave attendees Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill researchers find significant health benefits to air pollution reduction policies in NYC

New research demonstrates how reduced emissions can save lives and save money A new study from scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill estimates reducing emissions in New York City could save more than 400 lives every Read More

Thank you for helping the UNC Institute for the Environment have a “day like no other” for GiveUNC

The UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) had a day like no other on Mar. 29 for GiveUNC—Carolina’s 24-hour giving challenge. The Institute partnered with the Senior Class to raise money and awareness for a new environmental justice research program Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill Class of 2022 campaigned for the Environmental Justice Undergraduate Research Program on GiveUNC

As a part of their annual Senior Campaign, UNC-Chapel Hill’s graduating class of 2022 campaigned to raise money and awareness for the Environmental Justice Undergraduate Research Program, a program administered by the UNC Institute for the Environment. The Senior Campaign, a Read More

UNC study reveals surprising benefits of invasive marsh grass 

Phragmites australis (P. australis), an invasive marsh grass that many consider a nuisance along the North Carolina coastline, may have surprising benefits, according to new research conducted by Mollie Yacano. Yacano is currently a graduate student at the University of North Carolina Read More

Help us reach our GiveUNC goal on Mar. 29!

Mark your calendars for Mar. 29 and help the UNC Institute for the Environment exceed our fundraising goals for GiveUNC—UNC-Chapel Hill’s 24-hour giving challenge. Last year, the Institute had a “day like no other,” raising more than $325,000 from more Read More

Electric school bus research project leads to publication and research partnership benefiting Sustainable Carolina

Melanie Elliott hadn’t planned to become a sustainability analyst for Sustainable Carolina when she first arrived at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill after leaving a career in restaurant management. With a desire to do something she felt would Read More

New grant supports partnership with Durham Public Schools and Museum of Life and Science to develop hands-on STEM activities to engage students in learning about extreme heat

Durham heat map from the afternoon of July 23, 2021 (Image credit: http://nihhis.cpo.noaa.gov/Urban-Heat-Islands/Mapping-Campaigns/Campaign-Cities) The Center for Public Engagement with Science (CPES) in the UNC Institute for the Environment (IE), in collaboration with the Community Engagement Core (CEC) of UNC’s NIEHS-funded Read More

“Transitioning to a low carbon economy,” 2022 UNC Cleantech Summit features in-person event, virtual career fair

WATCH: See how this annual event connects the next generation of cleantech innovators with global, national, and regional industry leaders. The 2022 UNC Cleantech Summit will be held in person on Mar. 29-30 at UNC’s Friday Center for Continuing Education Read More

Molchanov Scholars gain valuable experience amid pandemic

Over the summer, five UNC students were paired with environmental organizations across the state to build their skills for a future in an environmental field through internships. These experiences were made possible by the Pavel Molchanov Scholars Program, an endowed Read More

Molchanov Scholars gain valuable experience amid pandemic; apply now for Summer 2022

Over the summer, five UNC students were paired with environmental organizations across the state to build their skills for a future in an environmental field through internships. These experiences were made possible by the Pavel Molchanov Scholars Program, an endowed Read More

Petric named director of IE’s Highlands Field Site

Rada Petric’s love for nature and animals stems from a place of comfort amid tragic events in her childhood: a civil war. Born in Bosnia, Petric was separated from her parents when she was seven years old. Her mother was Read More

2021

CMAS Conference celebrates 20th anniversary with record attendance at 2021 virtual event in November

The Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) Conference at the UNC Institute for the Environment held its 20th annual event Nov. 1-5, 2021 with a record number of registrants representing 19 countries and more than 360 attendees. This is the second year Read More

Geoscience interns explore Battle Park Water Lab (Photo Essay)

Over the summer, students in the Summer Geoscience Internship Program spent time exploring labs and sites around UNC and Chapel Hill, NC for their summer internship experience. Students in this program are from Robeson Early College High School in Robeson County, Read More

December Updates: IE Cleantech Corner

Green hydrogen is the focus of an entire track at the 2022 UNC Cleantech Summit on March 29-30. Cleantech intern Yutong Qiu shares a blog about this clean technology. Her article provides uses for green hydrogen such as steel production Read More

With $1.25 million Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, IE launches Iterative Design to Engage All (IDEA) Learners Program

First developed in the 1950s, per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are found in a variety of household items. They are used to create water-repellant fabrics, non-stick cookware, and a host of other products that repel grease, oil, and water. While Read More

Is your well water safe to drink? New resource from UNC-Chapel Hill, partners can help you decide

People who rely on private well water in North Carolina have a better chance of learning whether their well water is safe to drink thanks to an initiative of the UNC School of Law Well Water Pro Bono Project, the Read More

New study finds alternative jet fuels decrease health impacts near airports and downwind

Photo credit: dsleeter_2000 Press contact: Emily Williams, eew@email.unc.edu, 919-962-0965 Airplane emissions are estimated to be responsible for 16,000 premature deaths around the world each year. Driven by a 3.5% growth in passenger flights, aviation traffic is expected to rise over the next Read More

Carolina Tree Heritage program brings new life to downed tree

South Building, which opened in 1814, just gained a new detail that has been in Chapel Hill longer than the historic building itself: A 5-foot wide, 400-pound table made from a 251-year-old post oak tree that stood behind Old West Read More

Bradley steps on to UNC System Board of Governors; steps off IE Board of Visitors

It may seem unintuitive for a real estate developer to serve on an environmental board, but through a series of chance encounters turned friendships, Kirk Bradley did just that. Bradley, chairman, president and CEO of Lee-Moore Capital Company, served on Read More

Salvesen to retire after two decades at Carolina

This month, David Salvesen will celebrate retirement after a career spanning two decades at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His professional story tells of the importance of people in the environmental field, as he leaves behind a legacy of Read More

YES-Resilience youth science enrichment program wraps up with in-person summer institutes

The UNC Institute for the Environment’s Center for Public Engagement with Science (CPES) concluded its 10-month-long science enrichment program, Youth Engaging in the Science of Resilience in Urban and Rural NC (YES-Resilience) Teen Climate Ambassadors Program in June with two, in-person summer Read More

UNC capstone students engage Greater Duffyfield residents regarding beloved recreation center

Stanley White dressed in New Bern baseball uniform (Loaned by Cleo White and Pamela White-Holloway to New Bern-Craven County Public Library) UNC students in one of last semester’s environmental studies capstones sought to help a historically Black community strengthen its Read More

EcoStudio provides professional development through coursework, internships

The EcoStudio at UNC-Chapel Hill began as an idea to pair students with UNC environmental and sustainability entities to give students workplace experience and a chance to make a difference at Carolina. Now in its fourth year, the EcoStudio has expanded beyond Read More

IE energy educators contribute to first-of-its-kind renewable energy education summit

The UNC Institute for the Environment’s role in training the next generation of clean energy professionals is garnering national attention once more. Lindsay Dubbs, co-director of the Outer Banks Field Site, who recently was recognized for her energy education work and Dana Brown Haine, the Read More

New study identifies leading source of health damages from vehicle pollution in 12 states and Washington, D.C.

Press contact: Emily Williams, eew@email.unc.edu, 919-962-0965 Tailpipe emissions caused an estimated 7,100 premature deaths in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic in 2016 A new study finds that ozone and fine particulate matter from vehicle emissions in 2016 led to an estimated 7,100 Read More

MEDIA INVITED: Summer program to engage youth in learning about climate resilience, Whiteville, NC

The Center for Public Engagement with Science (CPES) at the UNC Institute for the Environment, in partnership with the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences (NCMNS) – Whiteville will host a three-day summer institute June 8-10 for youth enrolled in the Youth Engaging in the Read More

Piehler presents preliminary findings to NC Senate Select Committee on flood resilience

The North Carolina General Assembly’s Senate Select Committee on Storm-Related River Debris and Damage in NC met in April and heard from a host of entities from academic, government and non-profit organizations working on flood resilience in the state. UNC Institute for Read More

Youth learn about resilience to wildfires, prescribed burns and air quality impacts

Erin Apple, Coordinator of Youth Programs at the NCMNS and a member of the YES-Resilience Project Team, connects with program participants over Zoom in preparation for demonstrating a prescribed burn at the Prairie Ridge Ecostation in Raleigh, NC. On Mar. Read More

Institute has “A Day Like No Other” on GiveUNC

The UNC Institute for the Environment had a “day like no other,” raising more than $325,000 from more than 70 donors in 24 hours on GiveUNC on Mar. 30. The Institute placed among the top four campus units from across Read More

UNC launches CARDNL, Carolina’s first Drone Lab

Photos by Peggy Mullin.     From characterizing floodplains and mapping invasive species to forest management, Carolina’s Drone Lab, or CARDNL, works with interdisciplinary teams to tackle emerging research questions. Recently launched to provide a hub for innovative drone and Read More

Piehler testifies before U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee on flooding and resilience in NC

On Tuesday, March 23, 2021 Mike Piehler, director of the UNC Institute for the Environment, was a witness before the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment. Piehler gave testimony and answered questions about research at Carolina and Read More

UNC wins first ever EPA contract through U.S. GSA for up to $11.2 million over five years

(Photo by Johnny Andrews/UNC-Chapel Hill)     The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment (IE) recently won an award for up to $11.2 million over the next 5 years from the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Read More

Dubbs to use prestigious award from U.S. Department of Energy to promote women in clean energy

Research associate professor and Outer Banks Field Site director Lindsay Dubbs recently received a prestigious award from the United States Department of Energy. The U.S. Clean Energy Education and Empowerment Initiative (C3E) honored nine women from a range of clean energy fields. Dubbs Read More

IE, partners receive more than $500,000 to fund environmental health sciences internships

Starting in February 2021, a new collaborative initiative between the UNC Institute for the Environment, the Curriculum in Toxicology and Environmental Medicine in the UNC School of Medicine, and the Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences at North Carolina Central University (NCCU), will provide research Read More

Intern Leticia Tuset combines English and environmental public health to change lives through community resilience

Leticia Tuset has always harbored a love for English. In fourth grade, she just knew she wanted to be a writer. Now a Morehead-Cain Scholar and junior at UNC-Chapel Hill, Tuset has designed a vigorous academic path pursuing her interests Read More

2020

IE makes hands-on geoscience learning possible for Northeastern NC’s students and teachers

The UNC Institute for the Environment recently received $319,000 to connect students and teachers in Northeastern North Carolina with field-based geoscience learning opportunities. Geoscience Teaching Outdoors in NC, also known as GET OUT in NC, will take advantage of the Read More

As IDEA program for underrepresented students concludes, new program funded and in development

Janina Millis planting spartina grass for a shoreline restoration project. The UNC Institute for the Environment hosted its final cohort of six IDEA (Increasing Diversity and Enhancing Academia) students this summer, matching a total of 78 students with geoscience internships Read More

Giving new life to historic trees

The Carolina Tree Heritage program is giving second life to downed campus trees by transforming the trunks and branches into furniture, sculptures and other wooden creations, with the proceeds going toward student scholarships. Read More

Reflecting on remarkable career, CMAS Center honors retirement of Adel Hanna

When the air quality modeling community thinks of CMAS (Community Modeling and Analysis System), they instantly think of Adel Hanna. Hanna has been the director of the CMAS Center since 2003. Institute for the Environment Director Michael Piehler announced at Read More

Preyer completes term on IE BOV, begins service to UNC Board of Trustees

John Preyer grew up in Greensboro, North Carolina with a zeal for being outdoors. He got hooked on fishing and hunting by his older brother and some of his friends. But the Preyers lived in town and didn’t own land. Read More

UNC researchers receive grant to study potential benefits of beaver dams

Photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill recently received a grant to study the relationship between beaver dams and water quality. The grant, which is funded by the National Science Read More

Energy LEAP summer program still meaningful during time of social distancing

While the energy camp is usually based in Phillips Hall on UNC’s campus, this year the program consisted of a daily 1.5-2 hour Zoom instruction period followed by hands-on activities and experiments with materials provided by the CPES. Guest speakers Read More

How much geoscience can fit in a box?

Megan Hughes unloads boxes at the post office. Photo by Micah Hughes <she/her/hers>. This summer, the Center for Public Engagement with Science (CPES) launched a new K-12 initiative called “STEM Experiences in the Lab and Field (SELF)” for high school students in Read More

Meet the Field Site Directors

Engaging students in a semester of transformative hands-on learning and research are key aspects of the experiences offered at all of UNC-Chapel Hill’s field sites. A partnership among the Institute, the  Environment, Ecology and Energy Program and the  Study Abroad Office, Read More

After 18 years as Morehead City Field Site director, Noble passes the helm to Rodriguez

Gathering together for lunch on day one of each semester is Rachel Noble’s tradition. She aims to get to know students from their first day together at the Morehead City Field Site and she said she enjoys seeing many of Read More

BenDor named Institute’s distinguished chair of sustainable community design

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was Todd BenDor’s first job choice back in 2007 after finishing graduate school at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign with a Ph.D. in regional planning. Fast forward more than a decade and Read More

IE, NCMNS youth program on climate resilience to begin Aug. 29 virtually

Youth learn about air pollution research taking place at UNC during the 2017 program that inspired YES-Resilience.     On Aug. 29, 37 youth from North Carolina will begin the Youth Engaging in the Science of Resilience (YES-Resilience) Teen Climate Read More

Former field site student awarded prestigious NSF Fellowship

Claire Johnson, a student in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Environment, Ecology and Energy Program (E3P) and former IE field site student,  recently was awarded a competitive Graduate Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The Read More

Stories of Innovation: Clean tech interns launch series’ on start-ups and SMEs

This summer, interns for the Institute’s Cleantech Program have been engaging with startups and small to medium enterprises (SMEs) to tell their stories of cleantech innovation—digitally. The student interns have been writing whitepapers about cleantech disruption and blog posts that Read More

IE to guide $2 million flood resilience study

Hurricanes Matthew, Florence and Dorian caused billions of dollars in economic losses over the past four years. Six of the 7 largest rainfall events over the last 120 years in North Carolina have occurred in the last 20 years. These Read More

Meet the 2020 Pavel Molchanov Scholars

The 2020 Pavel Molchanov Scholars discuss their summer internships amid a global pandemic. Interns and organizations have adapted to the new normal as the world navigates how to continue work with new guidelines and standards to protect public health. Funded Read More

UNC Institute for the Environment takes actions to advance racial equity

UNC Institute for the Environment Director Mike Piehler shared a statement with faculty, staff, and students outlining the actions the Institute is taking to become a racial learning organization. “At IE we know that systemic racism has and does pervade both our Read More

NC Energy Literacy Fellow receives fellowship award to study grid resilience at home and abroad

Denise Renfro, NC Energy Literacy Fellow and member of the program’s Teacher Advisory Committee Denise Renfro, a CTE teacher and Director of the Academy of Green Technology at Douglas Byrd High School in Fayetteville, NC, and participant in the UNC Read More

Berke rejoins Institute to lead Center for Resilient Communities and Environment

Research professor Phil Berke recently returned to Chapel Hill and was selected to lead the Institute’s newly launched Center for Resilient Communities and Environment. “The Institute for the Environment, by its nature, cuts across the campus. We will be doing Read More

CMAS hosts fourth air quality conference in South America

This past July, researchers from all over the globe gathered in Brazil at the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Belo Horizonte to attend the CMAS (Community Modeling and Analysis System) South America Conference. This year’s event marked the fourth CMAS Read More

UNC IE’s Center for Public Engagement with Science recognized with a 2020 Best of Green Schools Award from the U.S. Green Building Council

The UNC Institute for the Environment’s Center for Public Engagement with Science (CPES) was recognized this year with the 2020 Best of Green Schools Award for Higher Education for their Outdoor Wonder and Learning (OWL) Initiative at Northside Elementary in Read More

Book Release: “Managing the Environment, Managing Ourselves, 3rd Edition, A History of American Environmental Policy” by Richard N. L. Andrews (’70, ’72)

In a new book to be released Mar. 17 by Yale University Press, Richard N. L. “Pete” Andrews examines the 50-year history of the modern environmental policy era against the background of the four centuries of American environmental policies that led to it. Read More

Have an internship or research project opportunity? EcoStudio has students!

EcoStudio pairs outstanding undergraduate students with faculty advisors for environmentally-focused internships, client-based research and applied learning projects. Students not only gain real-world experience, but they also can earn academic credit. Here’s how it works: 1) EcoStudio solicits internship opportunities and independent Read More

Innovating to a clean economy, UNC hosts 7th annual Clean Tech Summit for industry, government and research leaders from around the globe

The seventh annual UNC Clean Tech Summit, co-hosted by UNC Institute for the Environment and the Center for Sustainable Enterprise at UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, took place on Thur. and Fri., Feb. 20-21 at UNC’s Friday Center. Despite winter weather conditions, the event attracted nearly 900 registrants.   “The UNC Clean Read More

Postcard from the Field: Claire Bradley ’22 – OBX Field Site

Name: Claire Bradley Major: Environmental Studies Expected graduation date: 2022 Why did you want to go to the Outer Banks? I was interested in the Outer Banks field site because it offered so many opportunities in one. I was also excited to be Read More

UNC scientists, partners to develop new modeling system to pair emissions and health impacts at local scale for city, state of New York

A team of scientists has partnered to create a new modeling system to assist the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) in estimating the public health benefits of adopting clean and renewable energy and reducing energy demand in both Read More

Celebrating summer interns

As the summer came to a close, so did internships for dozens of students at the Institute for the Environment (IE) and organizations across the Triangle. On August 15, students who worked with IE and its partners such as the Read More

Preparing the next generation of energy leaders

JD Jorgensen, a teacher from Onslow County and NC Energy Literacy Fellow, led a team of students from Dixon High School (pictured above) to a first-place win in the wind energy competition at the North Carolina Renewable Energy Challenge, and Read More

Registration now open for 2020 UNC Clean Tech Summit

This UNC event is now the largest clean tech conference of its kind in the Southeast. The 2020 Summit, set for February 20 – 21 will feature a diverse mix of tracks including: Circular Economy, Ag Tech, The Rise of Read More

2019

Recently-renewed funding from NASA expands lake level project worldwide

Continuing its pursuit of understanding water volume fluctuations in Earth’s natural lakes, the Lake Observations by Citizen Scientists and Satellites (LOCSS) project is finishing its first year of worldwide data collection following its recent funding renewal from the National Aeronautics Read More

UNC scientists partner with citizen scientists to map Earth’s river obstructions

Humans have been manipulating the flow of rivers for millennia. From the earliest known dam built on the Nile by the Ancient Egyptians to modern engineering projects like the Hoover Dam, altering and controlling waterways is one of the defining Read More

Student body vice president Elizabeth Kendrick discusses her OBX field site experience

The Carolina community has long been comprised of a diverse body of bright, driven thinkers whose rich blend of academic and social interests lay the foundation of their professional aspirations. With access to a vast selection of resources designed to Read More

Undergraduate students visit tech hubs for renewable energy development in Asia

In a three-week long program this summer as part of Honors Carolina’s Burch Field Research Seminar, 22 undergraduate students traveled to China and South Korea to learn about the rise of clean technology and renewable energy in Asia. “The green economy is Read More

IE, NC Museum of Natural Sciences receive National Science Foundation funding to engage youth in learning about climate resilience

Responding to the challenge of developing resilient communities as the world faces more frequent and severe extreme weather events, Kathleen Gray and Dana Haine of the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Center for Public Engagement with Science were recently awarded a $350,000 grant from the National Read More

Pate family renews scholarship for field studies

The G. Timothy (’80) and Jessica Hope (’07) Pate Environmental Science Field Program Scholarships, or simply the Pate Scholars Program, recently received a renewal in its funding. The Pate Scholars Program is a need-based scholarship opportunity that helps reduce the Read More

Old Growth, New Life

Taking root around 1780, perhaps thanks to a colonial ancestor of today’s campus squirrels, a mighty tree predated UNC by a decade or more. Read More

IE, North Carolina State Parks host teacher training institutes

During their summer break, elementary school teachers from across the state braved the rain and the heat to learn environmental education techniques from specialists with the North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation and the Institute for the Environment’s (IE) Read More

Piehler Lab to examine the role of oysters in new studies

Each year, Americans slurp up 2.5 billion oysters. They’re an important part of coastal cuisine, and in North Carolina alone the fishery is worth about $4 million dollars. But there’s more to the acclaimed Eastern oysters than meets the eye. Read More

Postcard from the Field: Brianna Chan ’22 – China + South Korea

Name: Brianna Chan Major: Environmental Health Sciences Expected graduation date: 2022 Why did you want to go to China and South Korea?  China and South Korea are both rising leaders in the green sector, regarding clean technology development and innovative urban planning. As Read More

The sky’s the limit: New drone-focused instructional program to be offered in fall 2019

This fall, eight UNC faculty members will participate in a five-day intensive course that will explore the operation, safety, federal regulations and data collection capabilities of drones for environmental research. Susan Cohen, associate director for UNC’s Institute for the Environment Read More

IE, Northside Elementary Create Hands-On, Nature-Based Curriculum

Over the past year, the Institute for the Environment’s Center for Public Engagement with Science (CPES) has teamed up with teachers from Northside Elementary School to create a curriculum that will engage third through fifth grade students with science and the natural Read More

Protecting North Carolina’s wetlands (UNC News | July 22, 2019)

Cassidy Harding has known she wanted to be an environmental scientist since taking an AP class in high school. “I wanted to do something with my life that made a difference and tackle urgent issues,” she said. “What I learned Read More

Inaugural Molchanov Scholars share their summer internship experiences

Inaugural Molchanov Scholars Cassidy Harding ’19 and Dylan Burns ’21 discuss their summer internships in this Postcard from the Field. Funded by a $1 million gift from Pavel Molchanov, the program matches undergraduate students with environmental internships where students can Read More

UNC-led team wins NOAA grant to develop better air quality forecasting

A team of air quality monitoring experts will soon kickstart the development of a state-of-the-art emissions testbed to enhance current air quality forecasting systems produced by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA). Leading this team is B.H. Baek, a research assistant Read More

Geoscience students embark on retreat through coastal NC

On May 22, nine undergraduate students from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina Central University set out on a three-day retreat to explore the coast of North Carolina and broaden their knowledge and appreciation of Read More

NC Energy Literacy Fellows to explore the future of the electric grid

2019 Energy Literacy Fellows at a solar farm in Pasquotank County. The UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) will host twenty middle and high school teachers from across North Carolina for a professional development institute to explore the future of Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill joins U.S. General Services Administration schedule for environmental consulting services

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment (IE) recently joined the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Schedule to offer environmental services to federal government agencies. “The GSA Schedule is a different way of doing business with Read More

Media Advisory: North Garner middle school students get out of the classroom and into the water

On Friday, May 10, eighty middle school students from North Garner Middle School in Wake County will head to the Neuse River to test water turbines they constructed in the classroom from garbage, plastic water bottles, milk jugs, wine corks Read More

Troubled water: UNC researchers, capstone class address water contamination in North Carolina

Hurricane Florence pictured from the International Space Station as a category 1 storm as it was making landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. (Photo: NASA Johnson Flickr) See slideshow This semester, Annie McDarris participated in a capstone class through the Environment, Read More

Inaugural Pavel Molchanov Scholars named at 2019 UNC Clean Tech Summit

Cassidy Harding, left, is a rising senior majoring in environmental science with minors in information science and geography and Dylan Burns, right, a rising junior double majoring in environmental science and computer science, are the inaugural recipients of the Pavel Read More

NC Energy Literacy Fellow leads student team to National KidWind Competition

View slideshow An Onslow County science teacher led a team of students from Dixon High School to a first-place win in the wind energy competition at the North Carolina Renewable Energy Challenge held on April 6, 2019. JD Jorgensen, a Read More

Bringing environmental science to the people, IE launches Center for Public Engagement with Science

Sarah Yelton, left, environmental education coordinator for the UNC Institute for the Environment, and Tamlin Pavelsky, associate professor of geological sciences in the UNC Department of Geological Sciences, measure water levels using a staff gauge at Botany Pond on June Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill to lead $2.4 million U.S. Department of Defense-funded drone training program for natural resource professionals

A researcher at the UNC Institute for the Environment is leading a $2.4 million project to bring drone capabilities to Department of Defense (DoD) natural resource managers at Marine Corps bases in the Southeast region. Susan Cohen, IE’s associate director, and Read More

Innovating toward a stronger economy — and a healthier planet

Carolina hosted its annual Clean Tech Summit, convening entrepreneurs, government leaders and researchers from across the country for discussions on the global clean technology economy. By Emilie Poplett, University Communications Originally published on UNC.edu Clean technology isn’t just good for Read More

Satellites reveal a new view of Earth’s water from space

Zambezi river delta, snapped by Landsat 8 in March 2018. NASA Tamlin M. Pavelsky, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill In 1889, near the remote border town of Embudo, New Mexico, John Wesley Powell, the famous explorer of the Grand Read More

UNC and Virginia Tech offer free well water testing in Chatham County vicinity

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Virginia Tech are offering free well water testing to any resident or business using a private well for indoor and outdoor use in Chatham County, N.C. or nearby areas. The samples Read More

Gangi appointed associate director of clean technology and innovation

By Peggy Mullin (B.S. Environment and Ecology ’19) Greg Gangi, who formerly served as the UNC Institute for the Environment’s associate director for education, is taking on a new role as associate director for clean technology and innovation. As the head Read More

2019 UNC Clean Tech Summit features industry and policy leaders; inaugural career fair

The UNC Clean Tech Summit convenes students and professionals in business, policy and academia for two days of problem-solving to foster leadership and growth in the Southeast’s clean tech economy.  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) will host its sixth annual UNC Read More

Experiential Education For Future Environmental Leaders (Carolina Stories | Jan. 9, 2019)

A new endowed internship program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment will put students one step closer to environmental science careers. A $1 million gift from Pavel Molchanov of Charlotte will match students Read More

New internship program prepares students for environmental careers with training, funding (UNC News | Jan. 9, 2019)

A new endowed internship program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment will put students one step closer to environmental science careers. A $1 million gift from Pavel Molchanov of Charlotte will match students Read More

Molchanov establishes environmental scholars program with $1 million gift in Campaign for Carolina

A new endowed internship program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment will put students one step closer to environmental science careers. A $1 million gift from Pavel Molchanov of Charlotte will match students Read More

Postcard from the Field: Lauryn McMiller ’19 – Highlands

Name: Lauryn McMiller ’19 Expected Graduation Date: May 2019 Which field site did you attend: Highlands Field Site Why did you choose that site specifically? I wanted hands-on experience with environmental research and field work. When I looked into the details for this Read More

2018

IE continues to enhance energy literacy among NC students and teachers with grant from Duke Energy

Teachers stand on a completed landfill “cell” at South Wake Landfill. Yasmin Bendaas/EducationNC     In 2019, the Duke Energy Foundation will continue to support IE’s efforts to promote energy literacy among teachers and students in North Carolina, through a yearlong teacher Read More

Meet the 2018 Duke Energy Faculty and Graduate Fellows

  The Duke Energy Fellows program, administered by the UNC Institute for the Environment, is funded by a grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to develop leaders in the energy sector. The Duke Energy Faculty Fellowship supports one faculty member Read More

Virginia Tech on National Science Foundation RAPID grant to study well contamination in aftermath of Hurricane Florence

Andrew George meets one-on-one with community members to collect well water samples. A team of scientists from the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Environmental Resource Program (ERP) and Virginia Tech has been awarded a National Science Foundation RAPID grant to quickly mobilize Read More

Ready for a new challenge,’ says Cohen, IE’s recently appointed associate director

Susan Cohen is a big thinker. She has made a career of convening other big thinkers to solve complicated environmental problems from working at the U.S. Forest Service to the U.S. Navy. Now, as the newly appointed associate director for Read More

Arunachalam named deputy director of IE; chair of AMS meteorological committee

By Peggy Mullin (B.S. Environment and Ecology ’19) Air pollution poses major human health concerns around the globe, ranging from respiratory and cardiovascular disease to premature death. Modeling and predicting air quality scenarios can be complicated and messy because they Read More

Climate LEAP alumna receives 2017 President’s Environmental Youth Award

Liu and her award sponsor, Dana Haine, the K-12 Science Education Manager at the UNC Institute for the Environment, attended a ceremony at the U.S. EPA in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 21 where she was honored as the PEYA winner Read More

Online environmental health resource to assist communities after hurricane

In response to requests from state and local partners following Hurricane Florence, the UNC Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility (UNC CEHS) has compiled a list of online environmental health resources to assist communities who are recovering and rebuilding. The goal of NC Disaster Response and Read More

Students learn about sustainability, storytelling in Europe

Twenty-five UNC-Chapel Hill students spent six weeks this summer navigating Germany, Spain and Denmark—and never set foot in a car. “I wanted them to experience what it was like to be able to walk out your door and either walk, Read More

IDEA students present at 2018 Undergraduate Pipeline Research Symposium

By Megan Hoert Hughes On July 25, 2018, more than 130 undergraduate researchers from fourteen different programs came together for poster and oral presentations at the 4th Annual Summer Undergraduate Pipeline Research Symposium hosted by The Graduate School at UNC-Chapel Hill. Eight Read More

Teachers get their feet wet in NC shoreline classroom

Eighteen 4th and 5th grade teachers from North Carolina got their feet wet, literally, learning about how to incorporate outdoor education into their classrooms at the 2018-2019 kick-off of ExPLORE NC, a teacher professional development program. ExPLORE NC is an acronym for Experiencing Read More

UNC study finds living shorelines enhance nitrogen removal over time

Scientists have documented many benefits of living shorelines, but until now there have been no studies on their capacity to remove nitrogen from the water, a natural process called denitrification. The ability of living shorelines to remove nitrogen enhances water Read More

Postcard from the Field: Galapagos – Kyle Oliveira ’20

Name: Kyle Oliveira Major: Environmental Science Expected graduation date: Spring 2020   Why did you want to go to the Galapagos? It has always been a dream of mine to travel and see the islands at some point in my life. UNC provided Read More

Carolina Stories: David ’74 (Ph.D.) and Gladys McNelis

By Hope Baptiste David Nicholas McNelis ’74 (Ph.D.) and his wife, Gladys Hau McNelis, of Chapel Hill, are on an epic journey that has taken them across the nation and around the world. It all started in 1958 in Gladys’s Read More

MEDIA ADVISORY: IE’s Energy Literacy Fellows from across the state to explore the future of the electric grid

The UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) will host seventeen middle and high school teachers from across North Carolina who are enrolled in IE’s Energy Literacy Fellows Program at a professional development workshop July 10-12 that will explore the future Read More

Piehler (’90, ’94, ’97) takes the helm of UNC Institute for the Environment amid renewed environmental landscape at Carolina

Having grown up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania during the collapse of the steel industry and the city’s subsequent revitalization, Michael Piehler’s childhood experiences left an indelible mark and inspired him to pursue his life’s work in understanding the human impacts on natural Read More

IDEA 2.0 welcomes 2018-2019 cohort

Eight UNC-Chapel undergraduate students recently began an intensive, yearlong research program called IDEA 2.0 (Increasing Diversity and Enhancing Academia). The program kicked-off with a luncheon where students and their faculty and graduate student mentors gathered to discuss the 10-week summer Read More

UNC’s 2018 Climate Change and Resilience Symposium

Margaret Keener is a graduate student in the UNC Department of City and Regional Planning. Jessie Straub is a graduate student in the UNC Department of Marine Sciences. We both had the opportunity to work with Christian Kamrath and fellow Read More

Characklis honored by ASCE for service to the environmental engineering profession

Greg Characklis, Philip C. Singer Distinguished Professor of environmental sciences and engineering at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, has won the American Society of Civil Engineers’ Environment and Water Resources Institute’s Service to the Profession Award. Characklis, who Read More

CMAS expands to Asia-Pacific with inaugural conference in Beijing

The Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) held its first biannual CMAS Asia-Pacific Conference in Beijing, China, May 21-23. The event attracted more than 300 attendees from around the world, including nearby Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, New Zealand and the Philippines. Air quality Read More

Citizen scientists, partners contribute 1,000 lake measurements to NASA-funded study

On Monday, May 14 at 12:56 p.m., a citizen scientist texted a lake level measurement for Great Lake in the Croatan National Forest, North Carolina, marking the milestone 1,000th measurement for the NASA-funded Lake Level Monitoring Project. Great Lake is Read More

Hunting for Salamanders in the Highlands

The UNC Institute for the Environment’s Highlands field site was recently featured in a photo essay in Endeavors, a publication by UNC Research. View the full photo essay Read More

Seymour ’81 hosts D.C. meet and greet with incoming IE director

UNC Institute for the Environment (IE) Board Member Frances Seymour (’81) and her husband, Michael Kopetski, a former Congressman from Oregon, hosted nearly 30 guests in their Washington, D.C., home May 23 for a meet and greet with incoming IE Read More

From the Blog: Are Floodplain Buyouts a Smart Investment for Local Governments?

By David Salvesen and Christian Kamrath David Salvesen, is a research associate with the UNC Institute for the Environment and the director of the Sustainable Triangle Field Site. Christian Kamrath is a graduate student in the UNC Department of City and Regional Read More

Rye Barcott to graduates: ‘Do not run from the pain’

https://youtu.be/bWgaLBHzBxA   By Brandon Bieltz  Adapted from the University Gazette Watch video For the more than 6,000 students sitting in a sea of Carolina blue in Kenan Stadium on May 13, the journey to graduation was anything but easy. There Read More

Field site students nab second place overall student poster at State Energy Conference of North Carolina

Thailand field site alumnus Steven Tulevech represented a team of UNC-Chapel Hill students who won second place overall at the 2018 State Energy Conference of North Carolina on April 17-18 with a research poster titled “Life Cycle Assessment: A Multi-Scenario Case Read More

IE exhibit explores e-cigarettes, flavorings and the toxicology of vaping at annual UNC Science Expo

Amid stations of matching smells to graphics, blowing bubbles and building molecules out of candy, families and children were learning about the science behind a serious emerging public health issue in the United States—vaping. Vaping is the act of inhaling Read More

Postcard from the Field: STFS – Brianna Small ’19

What is your name: Brianna Small Major: Dramatic Art and Environmental Studies (Sustainability Track) double major with minor in Hispanic Studies Expected graduation date: May 2019 Why did you want to go to the STFS? I was interested in the Sustainable Triangle Read More

Haine receives NC Outstanding Informal Educator Award in STEM

https://youtu.be/jen6HM3MQkA Reprinted from North Carolina Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education Center Dana Brown Haine works for a major research university that is on the cutting edge of scientific discovery. While this research may not have found its way into science textbooks just yet, Read More

UNC team wins $1.5M NASA grant to study water storage in lakes using measurements from satellites, citizen scientists

https://youtu.be/pQiwdkOYnMo A University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill team led by geologist Tamlin Pavelsky has received a $1.5 million grant from NASA’s Earth Science Division to expand a pilot citizen science program to measure lake water storage from North Carolina to the globe. Read More

Carolina celebrates Earth Week

Earth Week will feature several events including a student-led fair in the Pit and a keynote lecture from award-winning climate change communicator and author Susan Joy Hassol. See all #UNCEarthWeek2018 events. The Institute will be hosting Movie Night at the Collider featuring IE’s Climate Read More

Gangi earns prestigious Massey Award

https://youtu.be/VFMyCXYqLhM Gregory J. Gangi, IE’s associate director for education and a teaching associate professor in the Curriculum for Environment and Ecology, was one of six employees at UNC-Chapel Hill to receive a 2018 C. Knox Massey Distinguished Service Awards. The Read More

Gray proposes new conceptual framework for environmental health literacy

Kathleen Gray, UNC Institute for the Environment’s associate director for outreach and public service, recently published a paper in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. In this paper, she proposes a new way to consider how individuals and Read More

McNelises pledge transformational $6 million gift to Carolina

David McNelis (Ph.D. ’74) and his wife Gladys Hau McNelis have made a $6 million estate gift to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, including support for the Campaign for Carolina. Once realized, the gift will fund initiatives in the Read More

Postcard from the Field: Thailand – Felix Evans ’20

What is your name: Felix Evans Major: Environmental Science Expected graduation date: Spring 2020 Why did you want to go to Thailand? I knew coming into college that if I ever studied abroad, I’d want to go to a country that was central to a Read More

Why I Give: Betsy Steele and Geo. Watts Carr III ’64

When asked to name his favorite memory from his UNC undergraduate days, Geo. “Watts” Carr III quickly responded, “that has to be the day I had a blind date with my wife-to-be, Betsy Steele, for the State-Carolina football game my Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill study finds common width among headwater streams

Kings Creek in Konza Prairie Biological Station, Kansas A recent study published in Nature Communications shows that small stream networks, also known as headwater streams, are remarkably similar despite a wide range of climates and geologies. The research team, led by Tamlin Pavelsky, Read More

Taking the Measure of Smart Cities in the Triangle

By Britanny Baporis and Andrew Jacober Britanny Baporis is a senior at UNC-Chapel Hill double majoring in Environmental Science and Geography. Andrew Jacober is a senior at UNC-Chapel Hill majoring in Environmental Science with a minor in Computer Science. According Read More

Annual UNC Clean Tech Summit urged entrepreneurship and innovation

The annual conference highlighted how the University, Research Triangle Park and the state play a key role in leading the way to a green global economy. By Will Rimer, University Communications, Friday, March 2, 2018 Not so long ago, clean energy Read More

Rye Barcott, social entrepreneur, to speak at Spring Commencement

The U.S. Marine Corps veteran and co-founder of Carolina for Kibera to give keynote address. By University Communications, Thursday, February 15, 2018 Rye Barcott, social entrepreneur, graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and board member of the Read More

IDEA 2.0 students dive into 2018 with a series of Geoscience Intensives

IDEA 2.0 students from UNC-Chapel Hill and North Carolina Central University are participating in a series of “Geoscience Intensives” over the course of the Spring 2018 semester. On January 26, students toured the campus of the National Institute of Environmental Read More

Cable named Institute’s Associate Director for Experiential Education

Jaye E. Cable, chair of the Curriculum in Environment and Ecology (CEE) and professor in the Department of Marine Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences was recently named associate director for experiential education at the UNC Institute for the Environment. “We are Read More

Industry, policy leaders to headline UNC Clean Tech Summit in March

The UNC Clean Tech Summit convenes professionals in business, policy and academia for two days of problem-solving to foster leadership and growth in the southeast’s clean tech industry.  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) will host its fifth annual UNC Read More

UNC Study Takes a Closer Look at Jordan Lake

Mike Piehler is a professor at the UNC Institute of Marine Sciences and the Technical Lead for the UNC Nutrient Management Study. The UNC Nutrient Management Study is conducting a comprehensive assessment of the condition of Jordan Lake that includes Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill wins second NSF Innovations at the Nexus of Food-Energy-Water Systems grant

Greg Characklis director of the Center on Financial Risk in Environmental Systems and Philip C. Singer Distinguished Professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, is part of a team awarded $2.5 million by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to study the Read More

Featured Event: 2018 UNC Clean Tech Summit

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will host its fifth annual UNC Clean Tech Summit Mar. 1-2, 2018 at UNC’s Friday Center. The event highlights the latest innovations, trends and challenges in the clean technology industry and how North Carolina Read More

IE releases new report to guide airports on local air quality health concerns from airport emissions

A new report published by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, provides guidance to airport operators on selecting an appropriate model for studying the potential health impacts of airport emissions. Scientists from the UNC Institute for the Environment Read More

“Explore More at Pritchard Park” kick-off showcases local natural resources, IE outreach

Six months into a year-long partnership, the Chapel Hill Public Library hosted a kick-off of its new outdoor learning and play initiative “Explore More at Pritchard Park”. As one of the named partners, the UNC Institute for the Environment has been closely Read More

2017

IE scientists to present at 2017 AGU Fall Meeting

Several scientists from the UNC Institute for the Environment will be presenting at the 50th annual AGU Fall Meeting Dec. 11-15 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Fall Meeting is the largest worldwide conference in the geophysical sciences and attracts more than Read More

UNC launches innovative Center on Financial Risk in Environmental Systems

  Extreme environmental events, such as floods, droughts, wild fires, winter storms, hurricanes, and other disasters, can wreak havoc on society. From detrimental environmental impacts, to financial loss and destruction of engineered systems, a new University of North Carolina at Read More

Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster second fastest growing cluster in the world, says Abele

By Cinnamon Moore Earlier this semester, UNC Institute for the Environment hosted a Clean Tech Luncheon seminar with speaker Matt Abele, communications and events manager at the Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster (RTCC). The innovative organization was established more than five years ago Read More

Student Spotlight Erin Danford ’19

Erin Danford Name: Erin Danford Hometown: Waxhaw, North Carolina Major: Environmental Science Minor: Geography Expected Graduation: May 2019 What drew you to your major? I decided to become an environmental science major because I wanted a career that allowed me to make a difference. I Read More

Erin Danford first student named to IE Board of Visitors

Junior UNC-Chapel Hill student Erin Danford has been named to the UNC Institute for the Environment Board of Visitors—the first student board member in its history. Danford joined the Board at the October meeting and offered input from the student Read More

Characklis named Singer Distinguished Professor

Gregory Characklis, professor of environmental sciences and engineering at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and director of the Center for Watershed Science and Management in the UNC Institute for the Environment, has been named the Phillip C. Read More

In the News: Go with the Flow

One of IE’s IDEA undergraduate student’s, Savannah Swinea, is featured in a UNC Research Endeavors article “Go with the Flow.” Swinea is paired up with Kaylyn Gootman, a Ph.D. candidate in the Curriculum in Environment and Ecology, to study stream beds. “I was looking for research opportunities for the Read More

IDEA 2.0 students stand out at Undergraduate Pipeline Research Symposium

By Rachel Greene https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/38202888441/in/album-72157683454553942 On July 28, 2017 hundreds of people filed into the Sonja Hayes Stone Center at UNC-Chapel Hill for the annual Undergraduate Pipeline Research Symposium. Nearly 150 undergraduates from UNC and universities around the country presented posters Read More

Meet the 2017 Duke Energy Faculty and Graduate Fellows

The Duke Energy Fellows program, administered by the UNC Institute for the Environment, is funded by a grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to develop leaders in the energy sector. The Duke Energy Faculty Fellowship supports one faculty member per Read More

Postcard from the Field: OBX – Bianca Gartner ’18

What is your name: Bianca Gartner Major: Environmental Science Expected graduation date: May 2018 Why did you want to go to the OBX Field Site? Many reasons! First off, I wanted to do a semester off campus. Same state – different country – Read More

Scientists explore new approaches to air quality modeling and health applications at 16th Annual CMAS Conference

https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/37172169064/in/album-72157688262994534 Highlights from the 2017 CMAS Conference More than 260 air quality modeling scientists gathered Oct. 23-25 at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Friday Center for the 2017 Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) Conference. The CMAS Center has been hosted by the Read More

In the News: Turbine Power!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/37893332302/in/album-72157661866782638 The Energy Literacy, Engagement and Action Program, Energy Leap, and IE’s K-12 Science Education Manager Dana Haine were featured in a video and story on the BeAM: Be A Maker Web site. The Energy Literacy, Engagement and Action Program, Energy LEAP, Read More

In the News: For Algeria’s struggling herders, “drought stops everything”

Abdel Hak Ghodbane herds sheep on his family’s farm outside Chemora, Algeria, May 22, 2016. Thomson Reuters Foundation/Yasmin Bendaas Less rain and higher temperatures means herders in Algeria are increasingly struggling to make ends meet   Adel Hanna, director of Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill to Host 16th Annual Community Modeling and Analysis System Conference

https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/30948226496/in/album-72157676472464596 Highlights from the 15th anniversary conference and celebration. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment is hosting its 16th annual Community Modeling and Analysis System (CMAS) Conference Oct. 23-25 at the university’s Friday Center. The annual conference Read More

Postcard from the Field: Highlands – Forest Schweitzer ’19

Name: Forest Schweitzer Major: Environmental Studies Expected Graduation Date: May 2019 Why did you want to go to the the Highlands? I was interested in immersing myself in an environment that challenged me both intellectually and physically, and which I thought would further Read More

Coastal retreat kicks off 2017-18 ExPLORE NC program

view album here The 2017-2018 ExPLORE NC program kicked off July 17 with a four-day-long retreat in Morehead City, NC. ExPLORE NC, which stands for Experiencing Place-based Learning Outdoors in Rivers and Ecosystems of North Carolina, helps elementary school teachers develop Read More

In the News: UNC researchers receive $61M grant to identify effective treatments for asthma

IE’s interim director, David B. Peden, MD, MS, is a co-principal investigator of a new study that will use precision medicine and “big data” analysis to identify more effective treatments for asthma attacks. The five-year study is being led by Anastasia Ivanova, PhD, associate Read More

Harnessing the Ocean for North Carolina’s Energy Future

Lindsay Dubbs, research assistant professor and co-director of the Outer Banks Field Site recently hired two research technicians to assist with her part of the NC Renewable Ocean Energy Program grant. Ted West III and Claire Johnson will help with data collection in the Read More

Meet a Student: Steven Tulevech ’19

Name: Steven Tulevech Hometown: Morehead City High School: North Carolina School of Science/Math Major: Environmental Science Minor(s): Information Science (and maybe English!) Expected Graduation: May 2019 What drew you to your major? I started at UNC with plenty of issues that I was curious and Read More

IN THE NEWS: Solar kickoff at East Chapel Hill High

Under a sunny sky on the freshman hill at East Chapel Hill High, students gathered to celebrate the hard work and risk-taking by four of their fellow Wildcats. The Solar Kickoff on Wednesday, September 13 represented the official announcement of Read More

DeSimone named recipient of 22nd Heinz Award

Joseph DeSimone, the Chancellor’s Eminent Professor of Chemistry in the College of Arts and Sciences at UNC-Chapel Hill and the William R. Kenan, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at North Carolina State University, and former board member of the Institute for the Environment’s Read More

Postcard from the Field: 3rd Annual CMAS South America Conference

The 3rd annual CMAS South America Conference was held Aug. 28 to 31 in Vitória, Espírito Santo, Brazil. The conference explored micro and meso-scale air quality modeling applications in the southern hemisphere and was organized by the Federal University of Espírito Santo Read More

Teachers examine the future of the electric grid

By Cinnamon Moore https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/36921451695/in/album-72157685693207310 Twenty science teachers from across North Carolina gathered at UNC-Chapel Hill from June 20-22 to participate in a workshop that helped them learn about new energy technologies and the future of the U.S. electric grid. The Read More

NASA-Funded Lake Level Monitoring Project Web Site Launched

The Lake Level Monitoring Project is an effort to better understand how the volume of water in lakes is changing over time. This NASA-funded project is a collaboration between the Department of Geological Sciences at UNC-Chapel Hill, the UNC Institute Read More

Meet a Student: Samantha Haughton ’19

Name: Sammie Haughton Hometown: Severna Park, MD Major: Environmental Science BS-Quantitative Energy Systems Track Minor: Computer Science Expected graduation: May 2019 What drew you to your major?  I came into college undecided, but have always been interested in the Environment, so I took ENEC 201 Read More

Visiting air quality scientist to collaborate on R-LINE

While researching tools to help solve Barcelona’s air quality issues, Jaime Benavides came across a promising open-source modeling program called R-LINE that could help him forecast air quality in his home city. Benavides, an environmental engineering Ph.D. student focusing on Read More

National Science Foundation grant to study coastal development

The roads on Carova Beach, N.C. are only accessible by 4WD vehicles. In 2017, the words “bipartisan environmental legislation” may seem like an oxymoron. However, in 1982 when Congress passed a bill called the Coastal Barrier Resources Act (CBRA), a bipartisan solution Read More

Inaugural IDEA 2.0 midsummer retreat hosted in Morehead City

IDEA students outside of the NC Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores On June 27-29, ten undergraduate geoscience students from IE’s IDEA program (Increasing Diversity and Enhancing Academia) traveled to Morehead City with program coordinators Megan Hoert Hughes and Kathleen Gray Read More

Peden named interim director of UNC Institute for the Environment

Dr. David B. Peden, an expert on the human health effects of air pollution, has been named interim director of the UNC Institute for the Environment. His term begins July 1. Peden replaces Lawrence E. Band, who recently accepted the Read More

Postcard from the Field: Thailand – Alfre Wimberley ’17

What is your name: Alfre Wimberley Major: B.S. Environmental Science, Minor Chemistry Expected graduation date: August 2017 Why did you want to go to the Thailand? I wanted to go to Thailand to explore a developing country also trying to manage environmental impact, Read More

Meet a Student: Will Hamilton ’19

Will Hamilton’s most memorable experience at UNC has been studying at the Flathead Lake Biological Station in Montana, where he took a course on field ecology. Name: Will Hamilton Hometown: Chapel Hill, NC Major: Environmental Science (BS) Minor: Computer Science Expected graduation: May 2019   Read More

IE to assist Chapel Hill Public Library with creation of outdoor environmental learning opportunities

By Cinnamon Moore https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/35199463955/in/album-72157681829573794 At a press conference at the Chapel Hill Public Library (CHPL) on June 8, North Carolina’s First Lady Kristin Cooper announced that the CHPL was among a select few to receive grants from the federal Institute Read More

Scientists discuss findings at annual Duke Energy Foundation meeting

By Rachel Greene https://www.flickr.com/photos/unc_ie/34812850660/in/album-72157681829533784 Five UNC scientists connected to the Institute for the Environment presented their recent findings at an annual meeting with Duke Energy Foundation on Thursday, June 8, 2017. The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support for groups and individuals Read More

Binkowski celebrates 80th birthday with colleagues

Photo by Liz Adams A profile of Francis “Frank” Binkowski Over 80 years of his life, Francis (Frank) Binkowski has become a man of many titles—student, researcher, father, veteran, adventurer, among others—a reflection of how he has managed to pack his Read More

IE Partner in New Statewide Water Quality Initiative

Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation awarded a $160,000 two-year grant to support a statewide citizen science water quality monitoring project to New River Conservancy on behalf of multiple non-profits and agencies across the state. Agencies participating in the formative stage of this initiative include NatureServe, NC Read More

Postcard from the Field: Galapagos – Emma Josephine Karlok ’19

What is your name: Emma Josephine Karlok Major: Environmental Studies Expected graduation date: May 2019 Why did you want to go to the Galapagos? I was really led to go to the Galapagos because of its notability as an ideal place to study Read More

IDEA Undergraduate Geoscience Students Present at Celebration of Undergraduate Research

On April 27, six undergraduate geoscientists presented posters at the 18th annual UNC Celebration of Undergraduate Research. The students – Karylle Abella (Mentor: Carol Arnosti and JP Balmonte, Marine Science), Ricardo Garcia (Mentor: Joel Hudley, Geology), Will Larsen (Mentor: Xiaoming Read More

Area experts share perspectives on climate change post-election

In today’s heated and polarized political climate and a new presidential administration creating uncertainty, the 4th annual Climate Change Symposium convened four experts from the Triangle-region to discuss their perspectives on what a new presidency could mean for climate change on Read More

Arter wins Joseph A. Hartman Student Paper Competition

Calvin Arter, a first year Ph.D. environmental sciences and engineering student in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and research assistant to IE’s Sarav Arunachalam, recently won the Federal Aviation Administration ASCENT’s Joseph A. Hartman Student Paper Competition. Arter’s paper, Read More

UNC students produce video for ENEC 259 in U.S. Virgin Islands

https://youtu.be/O7qs4W4dDZo Fourty UNC-Chapel Hill students got first-hand experience in one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet – coral reefs. As part of their Coral Reef Ecology and Management (ENEC 259) course, students learned about basic reef ecology, threats to coral Read More

IE exhibit teaches community about toxins in food and water

UNC’s Institute for the Environment taught children and their parents about environmental toxins in food and water and how to make healthier food choices during Morehead Planetarium and Science Center’s annual UNC Science Expo on Saturday, April 22. IE’s outreach Read More

Arctic river ice deposits rapidly disappearing

https://youtu.be/83tq8qKpTi0 IE affiliate faculty member and UNC-Chapel Hill hydrologist Tamlin Pavelsky is the lead author of a new study published in Geophysical Research Letters, a journal of the American Geophysical Union, which shows arctic river icings are declining rapidly.    Read More

Postcard from the Field: Galapagos – Tia Decker ’17

Name: Tia Decker Major: Environmental Studies Expected graduation date: May 2017 Hometown: Jacksonville, NC Why did you want to go to the Galapagos Field Site? I wanted to go to the Galapagos Field Site because not only did I know it Read More

Postcard from the Field: Morehead City – Rachel Quindlen ’17

Name: Rachel Quindlen Major: Environmental Science, B.S., Marine Science minor Expected graduation date: August 2017 Hometown: Wilmington, NC Why did you want to go to the Field Site? It came highly recommended to me by my peers and professors. I Read More

Postcard from the Field: Thailand – Emily McCrorie ’17

Emily McCrorie and her capstone group at a Royal Irrigation Department water monitoring station (TC.4) on the Chao Phraya River, the major river running through Bangkok. From left to right, Emily McCrorie, Caroline Keough, Kun Thep, and Kun Best, who Read More

Postcard from the Field: STFS – Morgane Pérez-Huet ’17

Pérez-Huet interviews Lumbee tribe member Kim Pavia about what it means to be Lumbee and how the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline could affect her community.   What is your name: Morgane Pérez-Huet Major: Environmental Studies Expected graduation date: July 2017 Why did you Read More

UNC students study coral reefs while in U.S. Virgin Islands

Fourty UNC-Chapel Hill students got first-hand experience in one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet – coral reefs. As part of their Coral Reef and Ecology and Management (ENEC 259) course, students learned about basic reef ecology, threats Read More

Band named joint distinguished professor at the University of Virginia

Lawrence E. Band, director of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment, was named Ernest H. Ern Professor in Environmental Sciences and Professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Virginia. He will step down after nine years as Read More

Gona ’16 uses writing to bring awareness to environmental issues

For many, finding a perfect career isn’t always straightforward. When Ashita Gona graduated from 2016 with a degree in journalism and was considering her career options, she thought it would be impossible to find anything that would match her two Read More

FAA awards grant to IE to examine air quality impacts of commercial air craft emissions

The Institute for the Environment will continue to study air quality impacts from commercial aircraft emissions with extended funding from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). This grant provides $424,988 for the next year and charges IE to use its sophisticated Read More

Folt leads panel on public-private partnerships to enhance innovation at UNC Clean Tech Summit

Chancellor Carol L. Folt moderated the panel “Public-Private Partnerships Between Universities and the Private Sector: A Powerful Way to Advance Innovation” at the 4th annual UNC Clean Tech Summit, Mar. 2 and 3. At the 4th Annual UNC Clean Tech Read More

Duke Energy grant to enhance energy education; develop leaders

Vice Chancellor for Research Terry Magnuson (left), Institute for the Environment (IE) Board of Visitors Chair Reggie Holley, and IE Director Larry Band accept a check from Duke Energy’s Amy Strecker at the UNC men’s basketball game on Feb. 18. Read More

‘Triple bottom line: economy, quality of life, and the environment, will make communities more resilient,’ says Clements

UNC’s Institute for the Environment hosted Trevor Clements, president of Tetra Tech Engineering, P.C., for its Jan. 24 Clean Tech Luncheon. Clements discussed the history of the water system in the U.S. and what his company is doing to implement Read More

High school students from IE’s science enrichment program bring solar panels to East Chapel Hill High School

Emily Liu and Megan Doherty The Duke Energy Carolinas/NC GreenPower Schools Going Solar grant program recently awarded a 5 kW solar photovoltaic system to East Chapel Hill High School (ECHHS). The grant application submitted by ECHHS was driven by student interest and Read More

High School Climate LEAP and IDEA Geoscience Students Meet Elected Officials at Saturday Academy

On Sat., Feb. 25, forty high school students from IE’s Climate Leadership and Energy Awareness Program (Climate LEAP) and the Increasing Diversity and Enhancing Academia Geoscience Program (IDEA), along with Action Fellows with the Alliance for Climate Education (ACE), joined together for a Saturday Read More

New NASA grant enlists North Carolinians to help measure water stored in NC lakes

Tamlin Pavelsky, an associate professor of global hydrology in the UNC Department of Geological Sciences and an affiliate faculty of the Institute for the Environment, has built a career on measuring rivers and lakes. Until now, he has used satellite Read More

IE’s Environmental Resource Program wins NSF grant to enhance program for underrepresented minority students in geosciences

For the last five years, IE’s Environmental Resource Program has received funding from the National Science Foundation to administer high school and undergraduate programs that promote, encourage and support underrepresented minority students to pursue careers in the geosciences. The program is called “IDEA” and Read More

Workman joins IE at Highlands Field Site

Workman poses for a picture with students at the largest living hemlock in Cheoah, N.C. Sarah Workman, IE’s new site coordinator of the Highlands Field Site and associate director at the Highlands Biological Station, traces her love for the environment back to Read More

Gov. Roy Cooper (’79, ’82) and others to headline UNC Clean Tech Summit in March

The UNC Clean Tech Summit convenes professionals in business, policy and academia for two days of problem-solving to foster leadership and growth in the Southeast’s clean tech industry.  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) will host its fourth annual UNC Read More

IE’s IDEA program featured at AGU

Megan Hughes presenting a poster at the annual AGU meeting. IE’s IDEA Program (Increasing Diversity and Enhancing Academia) was well-represented at the 2016 American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall meeting in San Francisco. This NSF-funded program provides undergraduate research experiences to underrepresented minority Read More

Student Profile: Michael Muoio

Name: Michael Muoio Hometown: Cary, NC High School: Green Hope High School Major(s)/Minor(s): B.S. Environmental Science: Concentration in Renewable Energy, Business Minor, Chemistry Minor Expected Graduation: 2017 University highlights, achievements, awards: Dean’s List, 2015 NextEra Energy Resources Fellow, 2015 National Champion (Men’s Club Soccer) I Read More

UNC Chapel-Hill receives RAPID funding from NSF to study water quality in aftermath of Hurricane Matthew

Ryan Leighton, a UNC graduate student, collecting stream water near Lumberton, NC. A team of researchers at UNC-Chapel Hill and N.C. State University are studying contaminants in the waters near the Lumber River and its tributaries after heavy rains from Read More

2016

IE forges joint venture with U.S. Forest Service

UNC’s Institute for the Environment recently joined up with the U.S. Forest Service to initiate a renewable five-year joint venture, based in IE’s headquarters in Chapel Hill. The goal of the newly established relationship is to foster new innovative approaches to major Read More

Easterling (’76, ’81, ’85) to Lead Geosciences at National Science Foundation

Carolina graduate and Institute for the Environment Board of Visitors member William E. Easterling has been selected to lead the Directorate for Geosciences at the National Science Foundation. His new post supports fundamental research spanning the atmospheric, earth, ocean and polar sciences. Read More

‘Time to teach solutions to pressing environmental challenges,’ says Gangi

Gangi takes a break from the 2016 UNC Clean Tech Summit to take an interview with student media. Greg Gangi, a joint faculty member in the Institute for the Environment (IE) and the Curriculum in Environment and Ecology, and the associate Read More

Final printed edition of UNC Environment newsletter hits mailboxes; get latest news + updates in e-news

Dear UNC Environment readers, As an Institute, we are committed to solving environmental, energy and development challenges through research, education and outreach. For years, IE has printed UNC Environment newsletter with the impact on the environment at heart. We are taking our Read More

Student Profile: Caroline Hall ’17

Name: Caroline Hall Hometown: Oak Ridge, NC High School: Northwest Guilford High School Major(s)/Minor(s): B.S. Environmental Sciences | Minors: Geographic Information Systems and Information Sciences Expected Graduation: May 2017 University highlights, achievements, awards: Deans List   I chose to attend UNC because… I chose to attend Read More

West leads new interdisciplinary course on climate change

Jason West, an associate professor in UNC-Chapel Hill’s Gillings School of Global Public Health, studied civil and environmental engineering as an undergraduate, but it wasn’t until he was a graduate student that he found his passion—climate change. This passion encouraged him Read More

EPA awards multimillion-dollar contract to Institute to protect air quality

Air quality analysis center receives contract worth up to $10.2 million to continue, expand operations (Chapel Hill, N.C. – Oct. 20, 2016) – The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment has been awarded a seven-year Read More

Local HS students “immersed” in environmental, geosciences through IE’s yearlong IDEA Program

Over the summer, twenty-one local high school students completed a weeklong field camp immersion, through the UNC Institute for the Environment’s IDEA High School Program (IDEA), where they conducted stream sampling at local creeks, toured a wastewater treatment plant, learned about sustainable Read More

Meet Regina Hill, IE’s New Director of Development

During a field trip in elementary school to the Newark Watershed in New Jersey, Regina Hill was struck by the beauty and wonder of nature and instantly developed a love and appreciation for the environment. For Hill, the group’s zealous tour guide Read More

Postcard from the Field: Morehead City – Hannah Lee Slep ’18

Name Hannah Lee Slep Major Environmental Science (BS) Expected graduation May 2018 Hometown Matthews, NC Why did you want to go to the Morehead City Field Site? I wanted an opportunity to get more hands-on experience and physical involvement in what I’m learning in Read More

Western N.C. Science teachers to explore the future of electricity

The UNC Institute for the Environment will host middle and high school science and technology teachers from N.C.’s western region at a day-long professional development workshop on October 3, 2016 at The Collider in Asheville. This interactive teacher professional development Read More

Student Profile: Oscar Menzer

Hometown: Greensboro, NC High School: Grimsley Senior High School Major(s)/Minor(s): Environmental Science Major, Computer Science Minor Expected Graduation: May 2017 University highlights, achievements, awards: Buckley Public Service Scholar, Phillips Ambassador, Pate Scholar, Gilman International Scholar, Bonner Leader I became an environmental science major because… When Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill-led team wins $3 million to study innovations, solutions to the interdependence of food, water and energy

The National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded nearly $3 million to an interdisciplinary team led by UNC-Chapel Hill’s Greg Characklis to examine the interdependence of the systems that supply food, energy and water. Characklis, director of the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Center for Watershed Read More

Local HS students spend week at UNC-Chapel Hill immersed in energy, climate science

Twenty-eight high school students from Durham and Orange counties recently spent a week learning about the connections between climate and energy at the Climate Leadership and Energy Awareness Program (Climate LEAP) summer institute as part of a yearlong student science enrichment program. Read More

Postcard from the Field: Thailand – Laney Sears ’18

Laney Sears is a rising junior majoring in environmental science with a concentration in energy and sustainability. She shares her experience at the Thailand Field Site in the postcard below. Why did you want to go to the Thailand Field Read More

Summer program to promote energy awareness among local high school students

The Institute for the Environment at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Climate Leadership and Energy Awareness Program (Climate LEAP) begins Aug. 1. The program, now in its seventh year, provides a weeklong summer science enrichment experience for Durham and Orange County high school students and Read More

Meet Grant Parkins: IE’s New Watershed Education Coordinator

Grant Parkins was raised in rural Ohio, spending his childhood in a one-stoplight town surrounded by cornfields and dairy farms. It was in this small, quiet town that Parkins’ love for the environment began. “I grew up with a creek Read More

Institute professor weighs in on the importance of energy efficiency in a guest column for Durham’s Herald-Sun

Researchers at UNC-Chapel Hill have partnered with Boston University to study the impact of including energy efficiency measures into the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan. The Clean Power Plan aims to lower carbon emissions across the country. Their Read More

Alumni Profile: Will Morgan ’07

Morgan with U.S. Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell on a hike along the Appalachian Trail   Will Morgan, director of government relations at the North Carolina Nature Conservancy and UNC-Chapel Hill alumnus, said working as a lobbyist for the past six years Read More

Taking the classroom into the field, UNC-Chapel Hill course delves deep into NC’s renewable energy future

The class in front of a turbine base at the Amazon Wind Farm   Stepping inside the base of a 500-foot, two-megawatt wind-turbine, is something most people can’t say they’ve experienced, unless they’ve taken Professor Greg Gangi’s course on the Read More

Postcard from the Field: Galapagos – Erica Gallerani ’16

Erica Gallerani is a senior environmental sciences major with geography and Hispanic studies minors. ​Gallerani spent her spring and summer doing independent research at IE’s Galapagos Field Site. “For my independent research project I am working with Dr. Stella de Read More

ERP, partners develop guide to help Triangle fishermen safely eat their catch

Families enjoying North Carolina’s Free Fishing Day at Triangle-area lakes or rivers this Fourth of July will have new resources to help them understand health advisories about eating the fish they catch, thanks to researchers at the University of North Read More

UNC professor pens column for the Raleigh News and Observer on ensuring safe drinking water for North Carolina

Earlier this year the Research Triangle Environmental Health Collaborative released a report with recommendations for policy-makers and governmental agencies to improve how North Carolina manages and protects its residents reliant on private wells for drinking water.  The report, Safe Water Read More

‘Tools of Watershed Management’ trains leaders to protect North Carolina’s watersheds

Following a comprehensive, statewide study of North Carolina’s diverse watershed programs, the Institute for the Environment’s Environmental Resource Program (ERP), in partnership with the NC Watershed Stewardship Network, designed and conducted a series of workshops to build capacity in the state to implement watershed protection Read More

Postcard from the Field: OBX – Cinnamon Moore ’17

During the fall semester, I spent four months at UNC’s beautiful Outer Banks field site. While taking classes and participating in an internship, I, along with nine other UNC students, conducted a capstone research project titled “The Social-Ecological Role of Oyster Read More

Kern develops new course on energy system analytics and modeling

Jordan Kern, research assistant professor at the Institute for the Environment at UNC-Chapel Hill, recently developed a new undergraduate environmental studies course in energy analytics. The course, “ENEC 490- Energy Analytics,” will focus on energy system analytics and modeling, while Read More

Exploring the Future of Electricity workshops continue to teach NC teachers

Forty-six science and technology teachers from Central and Eastern North Carolina recently participated in the professional development program Exploring the Future of Electricity, offered by the Institute for the Environment’s Environmental Resource Program (ERP). The program, led by ERP’s K-12 Science Education Manager Dana Read More

UNC Talks Climate Change

UNC-Chapel Hill hosted its 3rd annual Climate Change Symposium Friday, Apr. 22, featuring four keynote speakers and a poster competition for climate change research conducted by UNC students. Sponsored by the Carolina Climate Change Scientist and the UNC Institute for the Read More

IDEA Students Featured at Annual Celebration of Undergraduate Research

On Tuesday, April 18th, UNC students and faculty gathered at Frank Porter Graham Student Union for the Seventeenth Annual Celebration of Undergraduate Research. The purpose of this event, hosted by the Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR), is to recognize and Read More

Celebrate Earth Day with UNC + IE

How will you celebrate Earth Day this year? Here are a few ideas from UNC-Chapel Hill and the Institute for the Environment. Join the Carolina Climate Change Scientist and the Institute for the Environment for the 3rd Annual Climate Change Read More

Students get first hand experience in coral reef ecology

https://youtu.be/_GdGh1S6sHk Fourty-four UNC-Chapel Hill students got first-hand experience in one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet – coral reefs. As part of their Coral Reef and Ecology and Management (ENEC259) course, students learned about basic reef ecology, threats to coral Read More

Carolina air quality faculty share research at NC BREATHE event in Charlotte

On April 8, more than 300 participants gathered in Charlotte, NC for the Bridging Research on Economics and Air Quality for The Health of Everyone (NC BREATHE) conference. The event featured air quality experts, medical professionals, government officials, and citizen scientists sharing information on the latest in current Read More

Reeder gives overview of NC’s coal ash response

https://youtu.be/kUhFdb2UFLQ Tom Reeder, who is charged with leading the NC Department of Environmental Quality’s (DEQ) coal ash management efforts, provided an overview of the state’s enforcement and cleanup actions since the Dan River coal ash spill in early 2014. Reeder told the Read More

Visit IE at the Annual UNC Science Expo Apr. 9

On Saturday, Apr. 9, the UNC Institute for the Environment’s Environmental Resource Program (ERP) will host an exhibit at the UNC Science Expo. Annually, the Expo attracts over 1,000 attendees of all ages to engage with scientists and educators from 100 different UNC Read More

Institute professors receive Junior Faculty Development Awards

Three faculty members from the Institute for the Environment were chosen as recipients for Junior Faculty Development Awards this academic year. The awards were selected by an interdisciplinary committee chaired by UNC-Chapel HIll’s executive vice chancellor and provost, James W. Read More

‘Feeling of hope’ after attending UN Climate Change Conference, says Neligan ’16

The feeling in Paris after COP 21 was one of hope. – Megan Neligan ’16 Megan Neligan is a senior environmental studies major. Over the winter, she traveled to Paris to attend the United Nations Climate Change Conference. Read more Read More

Salvesen co-authors Best Paper in Journal of the American Planning Association

The associate editors of the Journal of the American Planning Associations recently announced the Best Paper in the latest volume of the Journal of the American Planning Association. The paper, “Evaluation of Networks of Plans and Vulnerability to Hazards and Climate Read More

IE awarded $100,000 by Duke Energy Foundation to study water, energy sustainability in North Carolina

UNC-Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment recently was awarded $100,000 from the Duke Energy Foundation to continue research on the drought vulnerability of the state’s power generation capabilities and explore the diversification of electric power systems and alternative energy sources. The research Read More

Meet a Student: Lily Dinkins ’17

Lily Dinkins Environmental Science Class of 2017 I knew after taking AP Environmental Science as a junior in high school at that I would major in environmental science. After being accepted to UNC, I had the chance to meet with Read More

UNC-Chapel Hill to host NC Clean Tech Summit, Feb. 18-19

UNC-Chapel Hill to host NC Clean Tech Summit, Feb. 18-19 Professionals in business, policy and academia gather for two days of problem-solving and planning to foster leadership and growth in North Carolina’s clean tech industry Chapel Hill, N.C.—Feb. 2, 2016) Read More

NC Initiative to Reduce Home Health Hazards Featured in National Webinar

On February 4, Kathleen Gray, Associate Director for Outreach and Public Service in the UNC Institute for the Environment (UNC-IE), and Neasha Graves, Community Outreach and Education Manager in the UNC-IE Environmental Resource Program (ERP), co-presented in a webinar facilitated Read More

Two UNC-Chapel Hill Faculty Elected to American Geophysical Union Fellows

UNC scientists’ work on water and the environment is making an impact in North Carolina and around the world. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill faculty members Lawrence E. Band and Hans W. Paerl were named to the prestigious Read More

UNC Professor Convenes Stormwater Task Force

Stormwater runoff is one of the leading causes of water pollution in the nation and right here in North Carolina.  While stormwater pollution impacts all regions of North Carolina, its effects on the coastal region of the state raise specific Read More

Training Stewards to Build Capacity for Watershed Management

On December 15th and 16th, Michele Drostin, ERP research associate, along with other members of the NC Watershed Stewardship Network (WSN), facilitated a workshop titled Tools of Watershed Management. The event, held at the NC Botanical Garden in Chapel Hill, was attended by twenty-two people Read More