Mission and Vision
The International Center for Energy, Environment and Sustainability (InCEES) connects the
Washington University community as the lead institutional hub for research, education and
practice in developing advanced solutions for energy, environment and sustainability Grand
Challenges critical to the well-being of our society and our planet.
McDonnell Academy Global
Energy & Environment
Office of Sustainability
Tyson Research Center
Consortium for Clean
InCEES Seed Funding Program
105 projects to 181 individual researchers across 6 WUSTL
schools and more than 35 external organizations.
Return on Investment
InCEES funded projects have been quite successful obtaining follow up
funding from external funding sources, including NIH, NSF, Department of
Energy, ARPA-E, NASA, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Alfred Sloan
Foundation. At least 50% of projects have sought subsequent grant funding.
Since 2008, more than 100 projects have been funded through the annual seed
pilot funding program. Funded projects involve personnel from the seven
schools and more than 45 external organizations. The network of InCEES
funded researchers has grown to 190 individual researchers, 68% of whom are
from Washington University. Women account for approximately 42% of the
total number of Washington University investigators. Junior faculty have been
quite successful as the lead PI of awarded projects. Together, assistant and
associate professors account for approximately 78% of all lead PIs.
Tyson Research Center
Tyson provides landscape-scale experimental venues for studies on ecosystem sustainability: an outdoor
laboratory for important research and teaching opportunities; research and educational opportunities for
undergraduate and graduate students related to the environment and sustainability, and it serves as a
showpiece for sustainable architecture.
Tyson’s Living Learning Center received one of the first
Living Building designations from the International
Living Building Institute.
Washington University Climate Change Program
2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Topics for Conversation launched to
bring together faculty in two key areas.
Building for the future of
Washington University Climate Change Initiative
launched under the direction of Peter H. Raven
formalizing the Topics for Conversation in one initiative.
Workshop on Climate Change
& Human Health
Meeting the Climate
Adaptation Challenge in the
Symposium on Biological
Extinctions and Climate Change
Interfaith Panel on
CQuest: Charting a Course for
Climate Research in Agriculture
Climate Change: Vulnerability,
Adaptation, Social Justice
Introduction to Climate Change course
introduced for freshman
In 2011, I-CARES initiated a series of discussions called Topics for Conversation. These groups were
small by design and met periodically to provide a forum for faculty from disparate disciplines,
administrators, and community colleagues to discuss issues surrounding energy and sustainable
development. This work led to the establishment of the Washington University Climate Change Initiative
(WUCCI), which was led by Dr. Peter H. Raven, President Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden
and George Engelmann Professor of Botany Emeritus. Under Dr. Raven’s direction the initiative helped
bring to campus a range of climate change events. In 2017 Brent Williams, an InCEES professor
focused on air quality, took over the initiative as it transitioned into the Washington University
Climate Change Program.
Since 2011, 50 Washington University students have been official delegates at the United
Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties
(COP) in Durban, South Africa; Doha, Qatar; Warsaw, Poland; Lima, Peru; Paris, France;
Marrakesh, Morocco, and Bonn, Germany.
Students as delegates to annual UN climate negotiations
InCEES, the Office of Sustainability, Environmental Studies Program and Tyson
Research Center provide a range of interdisciplinary internship opportunities that
enable students to develop their own research projects, engage with faculty, and
work with industry leaders. The program is growing quickly and, as we expand
connections to Career Services and other external partners, we anticipate
providing future students a range of terrific opportunities.
Office of Sustainability
Eight strategic plan focal areas.
The 2015-2020 Strategic Plan for Sustainable Operations does three key things: it highlights the progress we
have made since our original sustainability plan was adopted in 2010; it establishes new SMART goals and
targets for 2015-2020; and it outlines in-depth action plans to achieve the goals. Over 100 stakeholders
participated in the evaluation of progress against the 2010 baseline and in envisioning the steps necessary for
visionary progress. The new plan defines Washington University’s institutional commitment to sustainability
for the next five years.
The Office of Sustainability is a dynamic team of staff and students charged with providing the vision,
organizational strategy, and leadership for advancing operational and cultural sustainability efforts at the
university. The Office of Sustainability staff manages a team of approximately 24+ part-time, paid student
associates during the school year and four full-time paid associates over the summer to support the
university’s efforts to be a sustainability leader.
The Office of Sustainability honors the breadth and depth of sustainability projects that
flourish around the university. Within that framework, the office tries to find synergies
amongst the university’s different ventures, assist with operational efforts and enhance
the university community’s understanding of and participation in sustainability initiatives.
A 4 week competition to
reduce energy use
among S. 40 Residential
What would you do
with St. Louis’
vacant land to
create a more
Four of the city’s vacant lots will be home for five demonstration
projects testing new ways to think of vacant space. From a franchise-
model urban farm co-existing next to an intimate bistro built out of
re-used shipping containers — to a sunflower lab piloting efficiency
of plant-based soil remediation — Old North St. Louis will be the first
home to what truly will be a Sustainable Land Lab.
MAGEEP is an international
consortium of 34 universities and
corporate partners that supports the
development of innovative ideas in
collaborative education and a wide
range of research activities in
energy and environmental areas.
The goal is to collectively identify
and collaboratively tackle important
global energy and environmental
challenges in an integrated and
McDonnell Academy Global Energy and
Environment Partnership (MAGEEP)
McDonnell Academy Global Energy & Environment
Partnership (MAGEEP) MAGEEP Doctoral Network
The group was created in December 2008 at
the 2nd International Symposium on Energy
and Environment in Hong Kong. Currently
there are more than 800 members from 15
partner schools networked through this effort.
Photosynthetic Antenna Research Center
In August 2009, the Photosynthetic Antenna Research Center (PARC) was funded
by the U.S. Department of Energy as one of 46 Energy Frontier Research Centers
(EFRCs) established nationally. The EFRC program is focused on laying the
scientific groundwork to meet the global need for abundant, clean, and economical
energy. PARC aims to understand the basic scientific principles that govern solar
energy collection by photosynthetic organisms and plans to use this knowledge to
enhance natural antenna systems and to fabricate biohybrid and bioinspired
systems for light-harvesting.
We want to see if we can
come up with something
more efficient than found in
any natural system,
Payoffs…could be huge
and include breakthroughs
in agriculture, solar energy
and green chemical
- Robert Blankenship,
$39M+ in DOE Funding ● 14 Institutions ● 21 Principal Investigators
“We want to see if we can come up with something more
efficient than found in any natural system,” Blankenship says.
Payoffs…could be huge and include breakthroughs in
agriculture, solar energy and green chemical engineering.
Research Center (PARC)
Since 2009, PARC has directly impacted approximately 895 teachers and
9,000 students in the Greater St. Louis area and beyond.
Photosynthetic Antenna Research Center (PARC)
Consortium for Clean Coal Utilization (CCCU)
Established in December 2008, the Consortium for Clean Coal Utilization is a center for
research in advanced coal and carbon capture technologies. The goal of the consortium
is to foster the utilization of coal as a safe and affordable source of energy, and as a
chemical feedstock, with minimal impact on the environment.
The Advanced Coal and Energy Research Facility (ACERF) is a greenfield pilot-scale (1
MW, thermal) research facility designed for the development and testing of new
technologies for large-scale combustion applications, with emphasis on reducing
carbon and pollutant emissions, carbon capture, and CO2 utilization. It is one of the
largest oxy-fuel facilities located at a university and is accessible to industry, faculty and
students within the U.S. and abroad.
More than 150 students worked for over two years with industry leaders to design a resilient house for the
2017 Department of Energy Solar Decathlon. This house uses durable, insulated, robust precast concrete
panels that are factory-produced and assembled on-site. Specially designed dry connection methods using
bolts rather than traditional field welds, make field assembly much easier than traditional methods,
significantly reducing labor and material waste. High performance precast concrete are inherently
resilient, protecting against fire, moisture and mold, insects, seismic events and extreme weather
conditions such as storms, strong winds and man-made phenomena such as blasts, force protection and
The energy access challenge is particularly acute in the least developed countries, South
Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. The benefits of achieving universal access to modern energy
services are transformational: lighting for schools, functioning health clinics, pumps for
water and sanitation, cleaner indoor air, faster food-processing and more income-generating
opportunities, among others. – United Nations Development Programme, Fast Facts
of the global population
does not have access to
of those people live in
Sub-Saharan Africa or
Total world consumption of marketed energy expands from 549 quadrillion British thermal
units (Btu) in 2012 to 629 quadrillion Btu in 2020 and to 815 quadrillion Btu in 2040—a 48%
increase from 2012 to 2040 (International Energy Outlook 2016).
More than 540 million people are projected to lack
access to electricity in 2040. Those without electricity
become more and more concentrated in rural areas,
with 95% of the total population without access in
rural areas by 2040, from around 80% today.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that
approximately 1/3 of all food produced for human consumption in the world
is lost or wasted. This food wastage represents a missed opportunity to
improve global food security, but also to mitigate environmental impacts
and resources use from food chains. The carbon footprint of food produced
and not eaten is estimated to be 3.3 Gtonnes of CO2 equivalent: as such,
food wastage ranks as the third top emitter after USA and China…produced
but not eaten food vainly occupies almost 1.4 billion hectares of land,
representing close to 30% of the world’s agricultural land.
- UN FAO report, 2013
The number of hungry people in
the world has dropped to 795
million – 216 million fewer than in
1990-92 – or around one person
out of every nine, according to the
latest edition of the annual UN
hunger report (2015).
August, 2015 -- STUDIO MISI-
ZIIBI named a winner in the
Changing Course competition,
seeking long-term visions for
Louisiana coastal restoration
strategies. Derek Hoeferlin is a
core team member for STUDIO
MISI-ZIIBI: Living with the Great Rivers, Climate
Adaptation Strategies in the Midwest River Basins
The Mississippi is the world’s 4th longest river. It drains 31
states or 40% of U.S. landmass) and is a primary channel
for agricultural exports. But the region’s recent volatile climate – the 2011
floods followed by 2012 drought – threatens the use of the river and adjacent
lands. Professors John Hoal and Derek Hoeferlin are developing a Climate
Adaptation Performance Model (CAPM) as a crucial and intermediate
benchmark in setting the long-term research methodology for a new design
paradigm for how we live more sustainably within fluvial zones along the great