1.16.19

Welcome back everyone,
 
Classes got back into full swing this week and I hope you had a restful break. The U.S. federal government may be shut down, but we are not!
 
There are many exciting activities, events and goings on within the Nicholas School and on campus. I was pleased to attend a welcome reception Monday night for our inaugural class of International Master of Environmental Policy (iMEP) students from Duke Kunshan. At a time when the Chinese and American governments are engaged in some political and economic challenges, the Nicholas and Sanford schools are participating in a vibrant exchange that demonstrates the importance of sharing perspective and working together. If you happen to be in a class with one of our eight student visitors, or see them around, please extend them a warm welcome.
 
Of course, programs like the iMEP don’t just happen. They are the product of hard work by faculty who have vision and work to see it through. On that front, I want to thank Erika Weinthal and Billy Pizer for their dedication in bringing this innovative degree program to fruition.

MURRAY WRITES ABOUT ‘NOT TOO SURPRISING’ EMISSIONS INCREASE

In a new article in Forbes, Brian Murray writes about a recent report that estimates a 3.4 percent increase of U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions in 2018. His piece also offers three options for deep carbon reductions concurrent with economic growth. He writes, “carbon emissions are largely treated as free, so there is no natural incentive to conserve there without policy intervention.”

STUDY PREDICTS CLIMATE CHANGE’S IMPACT ON ENERGY CONSUMPTION

A new study, led by PhD student Yatling Li and Bill Pizer, is the first to estimate just how much Chinese residential electricity consumption would increase due to climate change, and it’s a lot. The paper, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, estimates that by the end of the 21st century each degree Celsius increase in global mean surface temperature would raise average Chinese residential electricity use by about 9 percent. Peak electricity use will rise 36 percent for every increased degree Celsius. Read more>

MULLIN, PECHAR RECEIVE DEAN’S AWARDS FROM GRADUATE SCHOOL

I’m happy to announce that Megan Mullin and PhD student Emily Pechar have been recognized by the Graduate School with Dean’s Awards. Megan was honored with the 2019 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Mentoring, while Emily received the 2019 Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. Lisa Campbell (2006), Susan Lozier (2007) and Martin Doyle (2018) are past recipients of the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Mentoring. PhD alumni Wendy Dow Piniak (2012) and Heather Heenehan (2016) were previously recognized for their teaching. Read more>

HELP US PLAN LUNAR NEW YEAR CELEBRATION

We're holding a planning meeting at 4:30 p.m. on Friday in Field Auditorium for students, faculty and staff who want to help organize this year's Nicholas School Lunar New Year Celebration.

ALUMNA TO LEAD MINNESOTA DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

Last week, Sarah Strommen MEM’99 was appointed as the new commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources by Gov. Tim Walz. Sarah, who has served as the department’s assistant commissioner for parks, trails, fish and wildlife for the past four years, will lead the agency’s 2,700 employees and oversee its two-year budget of $1.1 billion. Read more>

UNDERGRAD ALUM SWORN INTO WASHINGTON STATE LEGISLATURE

Sharon Shewmake T’02 was sworn into the Washington State Legislature on Monday. Sharon, an Environmental Science and Policy alumna who is now an associate professor at Western Washington University, represents the 42nd legislative district in the state’s House of Representatives. Sharon listed leadership on climate change at the top of her platform and defeated a four-term incumbent.

MEM ALUMNA NAMED GRAND VALLEY STATE’S SUSTAINABILITY DIRECTOR

Yumiko Chattulani Jakobcic MEM’08 was named the new sustainability director at Grand Valley State University. Yumi had served as the university’s campus sustainability coordinator until taking over her new role on Jan. 1. Read more>

@DukeEnvironment Today we welcomed the International Master of Environmental Policy (iMEP) students to the Nicholas School community. The students traveled from @DukeKunshan to spend the spring semester at our Durham campus.
It's great to see so much support in the Nicholas School community for this evening's LGBTQIA+ Mixer. #WeAreDukeEnvironment

#WeAreDukeEnvironment