Fracking has not contaminated groundwater in northwestern West Virginia, but accidental spills of fracking wastewater may pose a threat to surface water in the region, according to a new study led by scientists at Duke University. “Based on consistent evidence from comprehensive testing, we found no indication of groundwater contamination over the three-year course of our study,” said Avner Vengosh, professor of geochemistry and water quality at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment. ”However, we did find that spill water associated with fracked wells and their wastewater has an impact on the quality of streams in areas of intense shale gas development.” Funding for the study came from the National Science Foundation (grants #EAR-1441497 and #1249255) and the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The Award for Exemplary Service recognizes individuals who demonstrate a dedication to the Fuqua School of Business through their time, energy, talents, or financial support. One of this year's recipients is Terry Sobolewski (E'94, MBA'03), the Chief Customer Officer at National Grid, who has helped Fuqua strengthen its connections to the energy industry, spoke to students in the EDGE Seminar class, participated in the annual Duke University Energy Conference, and devoted time and energy to accepting students' requests for informational intervews.
This Wall Street Journal article highlights insights from Fuqua School of Business faculty Jack Soll and Richard Larrick on "the mpg illusion"—and why it matters.
In "The saga of North Carolina's contaminated water," Alana Semuels references climates by Ryke Longest, the director of the Environmental Law and Policy Clinic at Duke University’s School of Law, regarding the state's energy policy in the current political climate. The article also quotes Duke researcher Avner Vengosh, who explained that his team found groundwater—but not well water— had been contaminated by coal ash in North Carolina.
Backed by research out of Yale and Duke, a newly released guidebook details a range of best practices for boosting the adoption of rooftop solar power. Titled “Solarize Your Community,” the national guidebook makes the case for “contagious” rooftop solar. The findings are distilled from a three-year study of successful campaigns in Connecticut that tripled the number of rooftop installations, reduced the average cost of residential solar by 20% to 30%, and created local jobs in participating communities. Kenneth Gillingham, an economist at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and Bryan Bollinger, a marketing professor at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, analyzed this campaign to ferret out how specific facets affected its success.
Fresno isn’t the most obvious spring break destination, but it’s where seven Duke students chose to spend their vacation this March. The team took part in Solar Spring Break, a program of the national nonprofit GRID Alternatives that engages university students in installing no-cost solar for low-income families. The Duke team was recruited and sponsored by the Duke University. Check out the students' mini-documentary!
Twelve Duke students will pursue faculty-mentored research projects this summer and next year with grant funding from Bass Connections. Among them are Ashley Blawas ’18 (Biomedical Engineering), Brandon Dalla Rosa ’19 (Electrical & Computer Engineering) and Sam Kelly ’18 (Mechanical Engineering), who will produce a digital acoustic recording tag that reliably and accurately records and stores data using triboelectric power. Their work stems from research conducted during a 2016-2017 Bass Connections in Energy project on the History and Future of Ocean Energy.
Ten students at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment have received monetary awards to help fund international internships this summer. The students, who are all pursuing Master of Environmental Management (MEM) degrees, each received awards of more than $1,000 to cover the costs of travel associated with their internships. Bella Tan, an MEM in energy and environment, will intern with the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe’s Sustainable Energy-Clean Energy initiative through the Geneva Program in Switzerland and Celeste Whitman, an MEM in environmental economics and policy, will research water and energy consumption in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Communities with Griffith University in Australia along with a variety of other students who received the award.
Duke's Nicholas School of the Environment has developed a new Master of Environmental Management (MEM) concentration in Business & Environment (BE) to meet the growing private-sector demand for managers, consultants and analysts who can develop and implement business practices that benefit the environment, society and shareholder value alike. Students entering this fall can choose the new concentration, one of eight offered for the residential MEM program.
This Duke Environment article chronicles the energy education experiences that have benefited Eleanor Johnstone (MEM’17) during her time at Duke.
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