• Green Science & Environmental Policy Discussion Group

    The Green Science & Environmental Policy group focuses on the role science and engineering can play in understanding the environment and the development of green science. This highly interdisciplinary group brings together scientists from a range of disciplines who are interested in understanding the environment and how the design of products and processes can reduce, or even eliminate, substances that cause adverse effects on human health and/or the environment.

  • Past Events

    Thursday, November 19, 2015 | 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM

    Little Beans, Big Opportunities: Realizing the Potential of Pulses to Meet Today's Global Health Challenges

    Speakers: Seth Adu-Afarwuah (University of Ghana), Vincent Amanor-Boadu (Kansas State University), Richard Black (PepsiCo), Laurette Dubé (McGill University), Allan Hruska (United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization), PK Joshi (International Food Policy Research Institute), Mark J Manary (Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis), Danielle Nierenberg (Food Tank), Sonny Ramaswamy (USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture), John L. Sievenpiper (University of Toronto), Joanne Slavin (University of Minnesota)

    This inaugural conference will look at the role of pulses in healthy and sustainable diets, examine how pulses can make critical contributions to public health, and explore opportunities for enhancing these benefits broadly through food system innovations.

    Thursday, December 12, 2013 | 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM

    Frontiers in Agricultural Sustainability: Studying the Protein Supply Chain to Improve Dietary Quality

    Keynote Speaker: Barbara Burlingame, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
    Speakers: David Berry (Flagship Ventures), Jessica Fanzo (Columbia University), Gabor Forgacs (University of Missouri-Columbia), Dennis Miller (Cornell University), Prabhu Pingali (Cornell University), Mark Post (Maastricht University), Charles Schasteen (DuPont Nutrition & Health), Jean Steiner (United States Department of Agriculture), Josip Simunovic (North Carolina State University), Anna Thalacker-Mercer (Cornell University), Irvin Widders (Michigan State University), Guoyao Wu (Texas A&M University)

    Studying the protein supply chain to improve dietary quality.

    Wednesday, March 13, 2013 | 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

    Sloth: Is Your City Making You Fat?

    Tom Vanderbilt (author), Hunter Reed (FASTNYC), Kaid Benfield (Natural Resource Defense Council), Mariela Alfonzo (Polytechnic Institute at New York University)

    Join a panel of scientists, urban planners, and fitness experts for a talk on how designing and building better cities and towns may make us a healthier—and leaner—nation. Part of the Science and the Seven Deadly Sins Series.

    July 18 - 19, 2012

    Seventh Annual New Energy Symposium

    The 2012 New Energy Symposium will convene multi-sector stakeholders to showcase the latest technology in clean energy and discuss hot topics in the field.

    Wednesday, May 30, 2012 | 8:30 AM - 6:30 PM

    Implications of A Data-Driven Built Environment

    Organizers: Chris Garvin (Terrapin Bright Green), Michel Wahome (The New York Academy of Sciences)

    Our intent is to look at the potential data pool for the entire real estate industry and draw out the value between data sets and determine what data we should be collecting in order achieve sustainability and market transformation goals.

    Tuesday, May 8, 2012 | 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

    Beyond Ideology: How Should We Feed Ourselves if We Care About Nature?

    Moderator: Bryan Walsh (Time Magazine). Speakers: David Cleary (The Nature Conservancy), Jon Foley (University of Minnesota), Doug Gurian-Sherman (Union of Concerned Scientists), Phil Levin (NOAA) and Eleanor Sterling (American Museum of Natural History).

    Faced with ever-increasing population and ever-decreasing food systems, five scientists discuss the challenges and potential solutions that could feed the people and protect nature. The fourth installment of our four-part series Discourses on Nature and Society.

    Monday, April 16, 2012 | 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

    Nature and the City: What Good is Urban Conservation?

    Moderator: Bill Ulfelder(The Nature Conservancy. Speakers: Jon Christensen (Stanford University), Rob McDonald (The Nature Conservancy), Phil Stevens (Urban Creeks Council), Marielle Anzelone (NYC Wildflower Week) and Susannah Drake (dlandstudio llc)

    There's a new energy across the United States about recapturing nature in cities, but can these efforts rebuild biodiversity? Leading scientists, authors, and urban conservationists discuss the science behind and promise for today’s urban conservation efforts. The third installment of our four-part series Discourses on Nature and Society.

    Thursday, February 23, 2012 | 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

    Creating the Next Conservation Movement — Or Do We Even Need One?

    Speakers: Ted Nordhaus (Breakthrough Institute), Sanjayan (The Nature Conservancy), Michael Shellenberger (Breakthrough Institute), and Gernot Wagner (Environmental Defense Fund)

    How can we build a new U.S. conservation and environmental movement to meet the challenges of the new century...or is the desire to mainstream environmentalism just a symptom of the problem? The second installment of our four-part series Discourses on Nature and Society.

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Finding the Needle in the Data Haystack: The Implications of a Data-Driven Built Environment

    Speakers: Chris Garvin (Terrapin Bright Green), Cliff Majersik (Institute for Market Transformation), and Chris Pyke (USGBC)

    There is an increasing focus on policy, standards, and interoperability of building data. Without the proper tools, the virtual tsunami of building data can overwhelm potential users. This event draws out the market transformation opportunities.

    Thursday, January 26, 2012 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Will Technology Let Us Avoid the Limits to Growth?

    Speakers: Dennis Meadows (Author) and Thomas Graedel (Yale University)

    Join us as we explore an updated view of the 1972 hit book The Limits to Growth, with thoughts by an original author and a world renowned industrial ecologist.

    Thursday, January 12, 2012 | 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

    Energy for the Next 20 Years: Protecting the Environment and Meeting Our Demands

    Moderator: David Roberts (
    Speakers: Stewart Brand (Long Now Foundation), Joe Fargione (The Nature Conservancy), Jesse Jenkins (Breakthrough Institute), Arne Jungjohann (Heinrich Boell Institute) and Jeff Opperman (The Nature Conservancy)

    How can Earth possibly meet its growing energy demands without destroying the environment? Experts on wind, nuclear, hydropower and other energy forms debate the most promising paths forward. The first installment of our four-part series Discourses on Nature and Society.

    Tuesday, September 20, 2011 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Market Makers: Developing and Deploying Energy Efficiency Technology in NYC

    Moderator: David Biello (Scientific American)
    Speakers: Mei Shibata (ThinkEco), Colin Smart (Con Edison) and Allen Freifeld (Viridity Energy)

    Join the Academy for a panel exploring the emergence and growth of New York City's clean tech industry by way of case studies on its green building advances and locally sourced efficiency technologies.

    Monday, August 1, 2011 | 7:30 AM - 7:30 PM

    Sixth Annual New Energy Symposium

    Keynote Speakers: Robert E. Curry, Jr. (NYS Public Service Commission), Karina Edmonds (U.S. Department of Energy), Pradeep Haldar (Energy & Environmental Technology Applications Center - E2TAC), The College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering - CNSE), Daniel Zaweski (Long Island Power Authority)

    Keynote speakers will discuss challenges in new energy technologies. Entrepreneurs in emerging cleantech start-up companies will pitch their business plans to a panel of financial industry experts.

    Wednesday, June 1, 2011 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Climate Change, Science and Society: A Multidisciplinary Discussion

    Speakers: David Rind (NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies), Steve Rose (Electric Power Research Institute), and Lauren Chambliss (Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station)

    This special event will explore the topic of climate change from diverse disciplinary perspectives.

    Thursday, April 7, 2011 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Trash Talk: Options for Converting Our Solid Waste to Energy

    Speakers: Nada Anid (New York Institute of Technology), David Demme (SAIC Energy, Environment & Infrastructure, LLC), Mark Paisley (Taylor Biomass Energy, LLC) and Nickolas J. Themelis (Earth Engineering Center, Columbia University)

    Waste-to-energy technologies are an emerging solution to solid waste disposal. Considering that most municipal solid waste (MSW) is destined for the land fill, does waste-to-energy offer a more sustainable option?

    This event is sold out.

    Tuesday, January 25, 2011 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Net Zero Energy Buildings: Moving from Demonstration Projects to the Mainstream

    Organizers: Chris Garvin (Terrapin Bright Green) and Catherine Pfeiffenberger (Skanska)

    This event will present projects that are achieving new levels of sustainability in a challenging marketplace and provide expert insights into metrics, best practices, trends, and prospects in the low energy/net zero energy building realm.

    Thursday, January 20, 2011 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Is Nuclear Power a Plausible Long-term Option for New York State?

    Speakers: William Horak (Brookhaven National Lab), Gary Krellenstein (JP Morgan Chase), Jared Snyder (DEC)

    New York State has identified nuclear energy as a potential candidate for its long-term, clean-energy portfolio. This event examines the assumptions underlying its inclusion, prospects for financing it, and benefits that new nuclear technologies might deliver.

    Thursday, September 23, 2010 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Get Past the Past: Climate Change Adaptation In & Around NYC

    Speakers: Megan Linkin (Swiss Re), Gary Yohe (Wesleyan University), and Christopher Zeppie (The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey)

    How will cities manage the risks associated with climate change? Join us to learn how experts are developing risk management tools for identifying, assessing, and managing risks posed by climate change.

    Thursday, May 6, 2010 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    The True Cost of Water

    Speakers: Gregory Characklis(University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), Michael Hanemann (University of California, Berkeley), and Upmanu Lall (Columbia Water Center)

    The focus of this panel discussion is the importance of economic optimization of water usage in the present and in the future to establish long-term sustainability of water resources.

    Thursday, March 11, 2010 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Carbon Offset Credits: Making Them Credible in Climate-Change Policy

    Speakers: Sasha Lyutse (Natural Resources Defense Council) and Alexia Kelly (World Resources Institute)

    Panelists will explore how carbon offsets could achieve cost-effective reductions in greenhouse gases, and how to judge whether methods proposed for measuring and verifying offsets are capable of producing the intended environmental benefits.

    Tuesday, March 2, 2010 | 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM

    Emerging Infectious Diseases in Response to Climate Change

    Organizers: Dickson Despommier (Columbia University), Stephen S. Morse (Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health) and Gavin Schmidt (NASA)

    Climate change has led to higher rates of emerging infectious diseases worldwide, reemergence of diseases previously under control, and redistribution of diseases across the planet. This symposium examines these complex relationships.

    Tuesday, February 16, 2010 | 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

    What to Eat: Diet, Nutrition, and Food Politics — An Evening with Marion Nestle

    Speaker: Marion Nestle (New York University)

    There is a science to eating well, and an art to shopping for food. Nutrition expert and What to Eat author Marion Nestle explains, from a scientific perspective, how to decode diet advice, read grocery labels, and choose food wisely.

    Wednesday, December 9, 2009 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Sustainable MTA: Beneficial Uses of Groundwater

    Organizer: Ernest Tollerson (MTA) Panelists: Thomas Abdallah (New York City Transit), John Rhyner (P.W. Grosser Consulting)  

    The MTA pumps 8-13 million gallons of groundwater daily to keep subway tunnels dry. Currently, the water is treated as a liability and is routed into the city sewers. This panel discussion will explore possible beneficial uses of this groundwater.

    Wednesday, December 2, 2009 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Cities as Solutions for Climate Change

    Organizers: Cynthia Rosenzweig and William Solecki (Co-Chairs of the New York City Panel on Climate Change)

    This discussion will highlight New York City as an example for cities around the globe and examine the key role cities play in climate change adaptation

    Tuesday, October 27, 2009 | 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

    New York City Before Europe

    Speakers: Eric W. Sanderson, PhD (Wildlife Conservation Society) and Charles C. Mann

    Hear these authors speak on the ecology and landscape of New York City prior to European settlement. Discussion of the human and environmental history of our region, which informs the sustainable use of local resources, will follow.

    Thursday, October 9, 2008 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Is Gore's 100% Renewable Energy Challenge Achievable for New York City?

    On July 17, 2008, Al Gore challenged America to commit to producing 100% of our energy from renewable, clean, and carbon-free sources in 10 years. As "First City" to the world, New York City can show how to leap ahead in dealing with renewable energy production and reduction of carbon dioxide emissions.

    Wednesday, May 21, 2008 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Green Science: Bioindustrial Processes

    This highly interdisciplinary group brings together scientists and engineers with key stakeholders and policy makers from academia, business, and government who are interested in understanding the broad range of scientific methods and disciplines that underlie key environmental challenges. This year's focus will be on issues related to global warming with an emphasis on energy sources, energy storage, and carbon management.

    Wednesday, March 19, 2008 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Carbon Management: Reducing U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    This meeting will focus on the recent McKinsey report "Reducing U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions: How Much at What Cost."

    Wednesday, February 20, 2008 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

    Carbon Capture: IGCC and TIPS

    This meeting will present a panel of experts who will describe current approaches to capturing CO2, including Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) and ThermoEnergy Integrated Power System (TIPS) technologies.

  • Steering Committee

    Nancy Anderson, PhD

    The Sallan Foundation

    Nada Assaf-Anid, PhD

    New York Institute of Technology

    Michael Bobker

    CUNY Building Performance Lab

    Mirele Goldsmith, PhD

    Marker Goldsmith Advisors

    Richard Gross, PhD

    Polytechnic Institute of NYU

    George Hendrey, AIA LEED AP

    Queens College

    Fred Moshary, PhD

    NOAA-Cooperative Remote Sensing Science and Technology Center, City College

    Marta Panero, PhD

    Wagner Rudin Center for Transportation Policy & Management

    Greg Recine, PhD

    The New York Academy of Sciences

    William Solecki, PhD

    Geology Department, Hunter College

    Bernard Tuchman

    Urban Environmental Law Center

    Christine Van Lenten

    Freelance Science Writer

    Chris Zeppie

    Port Authority of NY & NJ


  • Sponsors

    • Pepsico

    Mission Partner support for the Frontiers of Science program provided by:

    • Johnson & Johnson

    Get more information about how you can sponsor a discussion group.