Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability

Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability forges new and unexpected connections that catalyze extraordinary change. The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability empowers faculty to think outside of their departments and across disciplines when it comes to tackling the world's greatest challenge—creating a vital and resilient future for the global community.
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By providing start-up funding for cross-college collaborations, emergency research, and partnerships with non-profits, government, and industry, the Atkinson Center supports the pioneering risk-takers at the very heart of radical collaboration through multiple funds and fellowship programs.

Mission: To discover and implement sustainable solutions to world needs for reliable energy, a resilient environment, and responsible economic development.

This edition of the Atkinson Update highlights the role of our Small Grants Program in facilitating research related to ...
02/11/2021

This edition of the Atkinson Update highlights the role of our Small Grants Program in facilitating research related to #food and #climate. This month, Cornell Atkinson awarded five grants to
Cornell graduate students in the area of #foodsecurity.

https://bit.ly/3tQCA3a

With support from a Cornell Atkinson Rapid Response Fund grant, Fellow Kathryn Fiorella, Associate Professor in the Corn...
02/05/2021

With support from a Cornell Atkinson Rapid Response Fund grant, Fellow Kathryn Fiorella, Associate Professor in the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, co-authored new research assessing the impacts of COVID-19 on food security among small-scale fishing households in Lake Victoria, Kenya.

https://bit.ly/36MGXlX

Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellows Sara Pryor and Rebecca Barthelmie, both Professors in the Cornell University College of...
02/02/2021
Global ‘wind atlas’ propels sustainable energy | Cornell Chronicle

Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellows Sara Pryor and Rebecca Barthelmie, both Professors in the Cornell University College of Engineering, have released a new global wind atlas – a digital compendium filled with documented extreme wind speeds for all parts of the world – to help engineers select the turbines in any given region and accelerate the development of sustainable energy.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2021/02/global-wind-atlas-propels-sustainable-energy

Cornell wind energy scientists have released a new global wind atlas – a digital compendium filled with documented extreme wind speeds – to improve turbine placement.

A new study co-authored by Cornell Atkinson Fellows Michael Gore and Ed Buckler, both Professors in the College of Agric...
01/21/2021
Early breeding reduced harmful mutations in sorghum | Cornell Chronicle

A new study co-authored by Cornell Atkinson Fellows Michael Gore and Ed Buckler, both Professors in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, found that harmful mutations in sorghum landraces – early domesticated crops – decreased compared to their wild relatives through the course of domestication and breeding. https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2021/01/early-breeding-reduced-harmful-mutations-sorghum

A new study found that harmful mutations in sorghum landraces – early domesticated crops – decreased compared to their wild relatives through the course of domestication and breeding.

Cornell Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
01/08/2021

Cornell Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Summer internship opportunity for hands-on sustainability experience! Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability summer internships offer Cornell undergraduate and graduate students immersive, hands-on experience at the intersection of science, policy, community, and industry. These internships expose student scholars and emerging scientists to the inner workings of leading environmental advocacy groups, such as Environmental Defense Fund (EDF). Follow this link to learn more; application cycle begins January 25: http://www.atkinson.cornell.edu/grants/interns.php

Fellows Chris Barrett and Rebecca Nelson, co-authors of a Cornell-led expert panel released by NatureSustainability Jour...
01/08/2021
Why collaboration is the missing ingredient in food system reform | Greenbiz

Fellows Chris Barrett and Rebecca Nelson, co-authors of a Cornell-led expert panel released by NatureSustainability Journal and funded by Cornell Atkinson, spoke with GreenBiz.com on how collaboration results in trusted systems that underpin structural change.

"These reports treat these systems as something we can program," said Chris Barrett, professor in the The Dyson School. "As opposed to massive systems of billions of people that make decisions that none of us can control."

https://www.greenbiz.com/article/why-collaboration-missing-ingredient-food-system-reform

Collaborative processes involve countless meetings and technical reports and lobbying and conflict. But they can result in trusted systems that underpin structural change.

New research led by Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellow Ian Hewson, professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Science...
01/06/2021
Organic matter, bacteria doom sea stars to oxygen depletion | Cornell Chronicle

New research led by Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellow Ian Hewson, professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, suggests that starfish, victims of sea star wasting disease, may actually be in respiratory distress, as nearby organic matter and warming oceans rob them of their “breath." https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2021/01/organic-matter-bacteria-doom-sea-stars-oxygen-depletion

New Cornell-led research suggests that starfish, victims of sea star wasting disease, may actually be in respiratory distress, as nearby organic matter and warming oceans rob them of their “breath.”

To deflect future world food crises created by climate change and growing consumer demand, a Cornell University-led inte...
12/10/2020
Cornell-led panel releases report on agri-food innovation | Cornell Chronicle

To deflect future world food crises created by climate change and growing consumer demand, a Cornell University-led international team of economists, scientists, and business experts has created a road map for global agriculture and food systems innovation, reform, and sustainability.

The group’s report – “Socio-Technical Innovation Bundles for Agri-Food Systems,” funded by the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability – was published Dec. 10 by Nature. Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellows Chris Barrett, Professor in the The Dyson School, and Rebecca Nelson, Professor in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, served as co-chairs of the expert panel.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/12/cornell-led-panel-releases-report-agri-food-innovation

To deflect future world food crises created by climate change, a Cornell-led international group has created a road map for global agricultural and food systems innovation.

At last week's New York State Sustainability Conference co-hosted by Cornell University, Cornell Atkinson Fellows Natali...
12/07/2020
Sustainability meeting focuses on social justice, environment | Cornell Chronicle

At last week's New York State Sustainability Conference co-hosted by Cornell University, Cornell Atkinson Fellows Natalie Mahowald, Daryl Nydam, and Shorna Alred spoke on topics ranging from United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to sustainability as it relates to “One Health,” which is how human, animal and environmental health are all connected.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/12/sustainability-meeting-focuses-social-justice-environment

The 2020 State of New York Sustainability Conference – held online Dec. 2-4 – focused on connecting human health, social justice, feeding the world and protection of the environment.

New research out from Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellow Dr. Martin Gilbert, Senior Research Associate in the Cornell Unive...
12/07/2020
Hold still, big cat: Vaccination could save Siberian tigers | Cornell Chronicle

New research out from Cornell Atkinson Faculty Fellow Dr. Martin Gilbert, Senior Research Associate in the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, has revealed that vaccination of endangered Amur tigers is the only practical strategy to protect
these big cats from a dangerous disease in their natural habitat in the Russian Far East. #OneHealth

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/11/hold-still-big-cat-vaccination-could-save-siberian-tigers

New research out of the College of Veterinary Medicine has revealed that vaccination of endangered Siberian tigers is the only practical strategy to protect these big cats from potentially deadly canine distemper virus.

Cornell Atkinson recently organized Cornell’s first-ever Sustainability Hackathon, empowering students to create real-wo...
12/07/2020

Cornell Atkinson recently organized Cornell’s first-ever Sustainability Hackathon, empowering students to create real-world solutions for how we sustainably produce, store, and distribute energy. Programs like these provide Cornell students with learning opportunities for impactful careers in sustainability.

Support the next generation of change makers with Cornell Atkinson.

https://securelb.imodules.com/s/1717/giving/interior.aspx?sid=1717&gid=2&pgid=3052&cid=7311&dids=6&appealcode=UN21YEME

Years before COVID-19 turned into a global pandemic, biomolecular engineer and Cornell Atkinson Fellow Susan Daniel was ...
11/23/2020
Susan Daniel wields biomolecular weapons to fight COVID-19 | Cornell Chronicle

Years before COVID-19 turned into a global pandemic, biomolecular engineer and Cornell Atkinson Fellow Susan Daniel was already looking for ways to defeat it. Now she’s expanding her coronavirus studies, blending engineering with virology and data science.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/11/susan-daniel-wields-biomolecular-weapons-fight-covid-19

Years before COVID-19 turned into a global pandemic, biomolecular engineer Susan Daniel was already looking for ways to defeat it. Now she’s expanding her coronavirus studies, blending engineering with virology and data science.

“Since the U.S. has one of the biggest economies in the world and has contributed the most to climate change, it is incr...
11/23/2020
Biden will rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. Here's what happens next

“Since the U.S. has one of the biggest economies in the world and has contributed the most to climate change, it is incredibly important that the U.S. return to the Paris agreement,” says Cornell Atkinson Fellow Natalie Mahowald, Irving Porter Church Professor in the Cornell University College of Engineering, and a lead author of the 2018 U.N. report on climate change.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/11/20/biden-to-rejoin-paris-climate-accord-heres-what-happens-next-.html

The next round of U.N. climate talks is set for November 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. Countries are expected to submit new 2030 emissions targets.

A team of researchers, led by Cornell Atkinson Fellow Atieh Moridi, is developing a 3D printing technique that creates m...
11/11/2020
Researchers 3D print biomedical parts with supersonic speed | Cornell Chronicle

A team of researchers, led by Cornell Atkinson Fellow Atieh Moridi, is developing a 3D printing technique that creates metallic materials by smashing together powder particles at supersonic speed.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/11/researchers-3d-print-biomedical-parts-supersonic-speed

A Cornell-led collaboration developed a 3D printing technique that creates cellular metallic materials by smashing together powder particles at supersonic speed.

Cornell scientists led by Fellow Doug MacMartin, senior research associate in the Cornell University College of Engineer...
11/10/2020
Engineer to model sunshine deflection for cooling planet | Cornell Chronicle

Cornell scientists led by Fellow Doug MacMartin, senior research associate in the Cornell University College of Engineering, will model adding reflective aerosols into the stratosphere, which may deflect enough sunbeams to reduce Earth’s temperature and limit climate change. A grant from SilverLining will be matched from any anonymous donor for a $1 million total grant, administered through Cornell Atkinson, which provided seed funding.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/11/engineer-model-sunshine-deflection-cooling-planet

Thanks to $1 million in new grants, Cornell scientists will model adding reflective aerosols into the stratosphere, which may deflect enough sunbeams to reduce Earth’s temperature and limit climate change.

An analysis of Denmark's wind industry offers lessons for policymakers seeking to increase renewable electricity product...
11/06/2020
Policy, not tech, spurred Danish dominance in wind energy | Cornell Chronicle

An analysis of Denmark's wind industry offers lessons for policymakers seeking to increase renewable electricity production with limited budgets, based on new research co-authored by Cornell Atkinson Fellow C.-Y. Cynthia Lin Lawell, professor in The Dyson School.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/11/policy-not-tech-spurred-danish-dominance-wind-energy

An analysis of Denmark’s wind industry offers lessons for policymakers seeking to increase renewable electricity production with limited budgets, according to Cynthia Lin Lawell.

The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability is celebrating our 10th anniversary by focusing with renewed urgency on m...
11/04/2020
Cornell Atkinson: a decade of collaborative sustainability | Cornell Chronicle

The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability is celebrating our 10th anniversary by focusing with renewed urgency on more powerful ways to translate knowledge into action.

https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/11/cornell-atkinson-decade-collaborative-sustainability

The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability is celebrating its 10th anniversary by focusing with renewed urgency on more powerful ways to translate knowledge into action.

Join us for the live-streamed IUCN launch event on November 4th at 11:00 AM EST: The Nature + Accelerator Fund — the fir...
11/02/2020
Nature+ Accelerator Fund: A new market strategy for nature-based solutions

Join us for the live-streamed IUCN launch event on November 4th at 11:00 AM EST: The Nature + Accelerator Fund — the first nature-focused conservation accelerator fund to create and scale nature-based solutions, with panelist and Cornell Atkinson Fellow John Tobin, Professor of Practice in The Dyson School.

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/nature-accelerator-fund-a-new-market-strategy-for-nature-based-solutions-tickets-126986290413

Nature+ Accelerator Fund launch and discussion: A new market strategy for nature-based solutions and conservation funding

"The environment was deep into a dark night when Silent Spring was published in late 1962. We’re there again in 2020. Bu...
11/02/2020
It’s always darkest before the dawn. Which could be true for climate change, too. - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

"The environment was deep into a dark night when Silent Spring was published in late 1962. We’re there again in 2020. But the sun always rises. And a new day is coming," writes John Morales, Cornell ’84 and member of Cornell Atkinson's Advisory Council, in Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

https://thebulletin.org/2020/11/its-always-darkest-before-the-dawn-which-could-be-true-for-climate-change-too/

When President Richard Nixon signed the act that created the Environmental Protection Agency in 1970, he declared that the '70s would be the "environmental decade" and a wave of progress was ushered in. But before that era, things had looked grim for generations. Could history be repeating itself?

"Other nations will do more to limit carbon pollution if the U.S. is doing so and less if America isn't," says Cornell A...
11/02/2020
US vote to shape how world warms as climate pact exit looms

"Other nations will do more to limit carbon pollution if the U.S. is doing so and less if America isn't," says Cornell Atkinson Fellow and Cornell University College of Engineering Prof. Natalie Mahowald of the impact of the presidential election on climate change policy. "In terms of leadership, it will make an immense difference."

https://apnews.com/article/election-2020-donald-trump-climate-climate-change-paris-e6db5893841465bab91f18d8fde8b800

What happens on election day will to some degree determine how much more hot and nasty the world’s climate will likely get, experts say. The day after the presidential election, the United...

Check out the latest edition of the Atkinson Update, featuring news of follow-on funding in support of Cornell Atkinson ...
10/22/2020

Check out the latest edition of the Atkinson Update, featuring news of follow-on funding in support of Cornell Atkinson Fellow Buz Barstow and his innovative approach to extracting rare earth elements, an example off an external funding award announced this year from a 2019 Academic Venture Fund project.

Also featured is a highlight of Cornell Atkinson’s first energy-focused sustainability hackathon that happened last weekend, as well as additional stories featuring U.S. DOE and NYSERDA funded Cornell efforts, led by Cornell Atkinson Fellows, as part of broader efforts to accelerate every transitions.

https://www.atkinson.cornell.edu/news/newsletter/newsletter-20201022.php

A U.S. Department of Energy agency has awarded $1 million to Cornell researchers, led by Fellow Buz Barstow, to use prog...
10/22/2020
Using microbes, scientists aim to extract rare-earth elements | Cornell Chronicle

A U.S. Department of Energy agency has awarded $1 million to Cornell researchers, led by Fellow Buz Barstow, to use programmed microbes to mine rare-earth minerals used in consumer electronics and advanced renewable energy. A 2019 Cornell Atkinson Academic Venture Fund (https://www.atkinson.cornell.edu/grants/avf/avf-pop.php?ID=2019_Barstow) launched this research.

"The AVF award was so important in getting us started on this project. It allowed us to bring on a postdoc and a graduate student (Sean Medin) and it let us apply a new approach to genetics wherein we can evaluate each gene to identify which ones to manipulate with the outcome of separating and extracting rare earth metals, which is the foundation of the grant," says Buz Barstow, assistant professor of biological and environmental engineering in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University and the grant's principal investigator (PI).

Co-PI's on the grant are Mingming Wu, professor in the Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering (CALS); Esteban Gazel, associate professor of earth and atmospheric sciences in CALS and the Cornell University College of Engineering (COE); and Megan Holycross, assistant professor of earth and atmospheric sciences (CALS, COE). https://news.cornell.edu/stories/2020/10/using-microbes-scientists-aim-extract-rare-earth-elements

A U.S. Department of Energy agency has awarded $1 million to Cornell researchers, who are using programmed microbes to mine rare-earth minerals used in consumer electronics and advanced renewable energy.

Fellows Esteban Gazel, Natalie Mahowald, and Mathew Pritchard, all faculty in the Cornell University College of Engineer...
10/13/2020
Scientists aim to broaden knowledge of volcanoes | Cornell Chronicle

Fellows Esteban Gazel, Natalie Mahowald, and Mathew Pritchard, all faculty in the Cornell University College of Engineering, have received a $1.4 million grant from NASA to lead a study of how volcanic ash from past eruptions affected the Earth. The work originated from a 2018 Cornell Atkinson Rapid Response Fund.

A research team from Cornell’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences has received a $1.4 million grant from NASA to lead a study of how volcanic ash from past eruptions affected the Earth.

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The Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability empowers faculty to think outside of their departments and across disciplines when it comes to tackling the world's greatest challenge—creating a vital and resilient future for the global community. By providing start-up funding for cross-college collaborations, emergency research, and partnerships with non-profits, government, and industry, Cornell Atkinson supports the pioneering risk-takers at the very heart of radical collaboration through multiple funds and fellowship programs.

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