Skip to main content

Sustainability News

The carbon dioxide-to-methanol process. Illustration courtesy of Surya Prakash.

Turning air into fuel: USC chemists convert carbon dioxide into methanol

February 1, 2016

They’re making fuel from thin air at the USC Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute. For the first time, researchers there have directly converted carbon dioxide from the air into methanol at relatively low…

Matthew Kahn is currently a visiting professor of economics and spatial sciences at USC Dornsife but will come onboard full-time in August 2016. Photo courtesy of Matthew Kahn.

New faculty member brings passion for environmental economics

January 21, 2016

When Matthew Kahn was nine years old, in the early 1970s, he wrote a letter to then-President Gerald Ford to inquire about the details of Ford’s “Whip Inflation Now” economic program. “At a very young…

Frontline Scholar: Austin

Frontline Scholar: Austin

January 19, 2016

This first video in our Frontline Scholars series profiles Austin Reagan ’16, a double major in environmental studies and political science. Building on a family tradition of global consciousness and the opportunities…

Contrasting projections of 21st century precipitation from two of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change models. The left panel shows a projection from Japan's Model for Interdisciplinary research on Climate (MIROC) and the right depicts projections from the United States' Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL). The MIROC model projects a drying over the western U.S. during the 21st century, whereas the GFDL model projects wetter conditions. Image courtesy of Lowell Stott.

El Niño and beyond: How to predict climate change

December 10, 2015

In 2014, the Pacific Ocean was primed for a strong El Niño season. Warmer-than-normal sea surface temperatures across the central and eastern equatorial Pacific led scientists to believe that conditions would provide…

Undergraduate students from the environmental studies program at USC Dornsife take their first foray into grant writing and find success.

Students pen winning environmental grant proposals

November 23, 2015

Being that California is in the midst of a historic four-year drought, the impending El Niño is welcome news. Though it’s highly unlikely that the climate system will end the state’s water woes, this…

Advancing Aquaponics

Advancing Aquaponics

October 27, 2015

Environmental studies students Jacqueline Hernandez ’17 and Natalie Kra ’17 helped build the new aquaponics system at the USC Wrigley Marine Science Center on California’s Catalina Island.

The new Ph.D. program will capitalize on the world-leading faculty expertise in population, place and health that already exists at USC.

Population, Health and Place

September 29, 2015

Physician John Snow’s use of a map to discover the contaminated water source that spawned the deadly 1854 cholera outbreak in the neighborhood of Soho in London, England, is widely recognized as one of the earliest…

The McCarthy Quad will be transformed into an “eco-hangout” where students can learn how they can impact climate change policy and generate solutions for a more sustainable future.

A Plan for Tomorrow

September 29, 2015

As carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere continue to rise, warming the climate and changing major ecosystems, USC Dornsife student Zach Manta wants his peers at USC to know that they can make a difference to reverse the…

Five panelists discussed the Pope’s recent encyclical on the environment and climate change at a Sept. 9 event.

Pope Francis — Environmental Activist?

September 10, 2015

Students, faculty and staff packed Doheny Library on USC’s University Park campus on Sept. 9 to hear how one of the world’s most beloved religious leaders is shaping the debate on climate change and global…

Endangered chimpanzees in Uganda are adapting to life in fragmented forest patches, according to research by Maureen McCarthy, who is pursuing a Ph.D. in integrative and evolutionary biology at USC Dornsife. Photo courtesy of Jenny via Flickr.

Rare Chimps

August 31, 2015

Two years spent collecting and analyzing eastern chimpanzee fecal samples from an unprotected region in Uganda has revealed a far larger population of the primates than previous estimates suggested for the area. In the…