Graduate Center Scholars Protect and Celebrate the Earth

April 22, 2023

On Earth Day, we recognize the role our scholars play in preserving the planet.

Earth Day Getty Images Art: buildings and trees
Credit: Getty Images

From a groundbreaking role as environmental justice coordinator to measuring the effects of climate change on Adirondack lakes, Graduate Center scholars are leading the drive to protect our planet. 

Katera Moore
Katera Moore

Alumna Katera Moore ( Ph.D. ’14, Earth and Environmental Sciences) became Delaware’s first environmental justice coordinator. Moore will work closely with underserved communities, who, she says, are at higher risk from environmental pollution and climate change.

Learn about the Ph.D. Program in Earth and Enviromental Sciences

Pedro Val Science Review paper on the Amazon
(Credit: Getty Images)

Professors Ana Carnaval (GC/City College, Biology) and Pedro Val (GC/Queens, Earth and Environmental Sciences) detail the unprecedented rate at which people are altering the Amazon and suggest several policy solutions. “The rate of change of what is forested in the Amazon has been too fast,” said Carnaval, "and this is serious, not just for Amazonia, but for our planet as a whole.”

Learn about the Ph.D. Program in Biology

As climate change makes extreme weather more common, Professor Brett Branco (GC/Brooklyn, Earth and Environmental Sciences) and Ricardo Toledo-Crow, director of the CUNY ASRC’s Next Generation Environmental Sensor Lab, worked with a group of environmental researchers to create FloodNet, a real-time flood tracking system in New York City.

Learn more about the Advanced Science Research Center

The NYC Climate Justice Hub will aid the New York Environmental Justice Alliance, its members, and campaigns in their efforts to support low-income and frontline communities of color disproportionately burdened by environmental and climate hazards. (Photo courtesy of NYC-EJA.)
(Photo courtesy of NYC-EJA)

The NYC Climate Justice Hub, a partnership between the Graduate Center and the New York City Environmental Justice Alliance, was established with a $4 million grant from the Waverly Street Foundation. The Climate Justice Hub will support low-income and frontline communities of color disproportionately burdened by environmental and climate hazards and risks as they fight for policies and projects that secure clean air, water, energy, and access to healthy food and green space.

A wheel of the train on a rail
Credit: Getty Images

Professors Alan Lyons (GC/College of Staten Island, Chemistry) and Jin Shin (GC/Medgar Evers College, Earth and Environmental Sciences) and Distinguished Professor Gerald Markowitz (GC/John Jay, History) explain the science of plastics and weigh in on the environmental and human health hazards of vinyl chloride and other chemicals released in the train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio.

Lake George, New York
Lake George, New York (Credit: Getty Images)

Professor Marzi Azarderakhsh (Earth and Environmental Sciences) is part of a group of scientists monitoring the temperature of Adirondack lakes in order to better understand the effect of climate change on the region and the fish that live in them. 

Ness Brown and her new book, The Scourge Between Stars
Ness Brown and the cover of their book, "The Scourge Between Stars"

Astrophysics master’s student Ness Brown says their sci-fi novella, The Scourge Between Stars, is also “a miniature cautionary tale about how we treat our home world.”

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