At Oregon, we know that we are in the midst of unprecedented and transformative environmental change. All of us, and especially our students, are facing dramatic ecological shifts to all our natural systems because of climate change and other forces. This change highlights social justice dynamics and environmental inequities that shape our world. As a result, we see societal paradigm shifts in systems that govern our economy, the built environment, democracy, and fundamental relationships among people. This work requires the amplification of voices that have often gone unheard.

We face these challenges by generating new approaches, finding proactive problem-solving pathways, engaging in collaboration with multiple constituencies and social groups, participating in diverse ideas and forms of knowledge, and exerting the full measure of our creative energy.

About the Environment Initiative



EI Year in Review

Environment Initiative Annual Review

Read about the successes and solutions developed by experts, faculty members, fellows, and leaders within the initiative.

Read the Review


Student Advocacy and Action for Environmental Justice (SAAEJ, pronounced "sage") and the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Center (ENR) present an environmental justice panel focused on the intersection of water law, policy, and science.
Elizabeth Kronk Warner (Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians) will visit Oregon Law to deliver the 17th Annual Rennard Strickland Lecture on Tuesday, October 24th, 2023. Kronk Warner is the Jefferson B. & Rita Fordham Presidential Dean and Professor of Law at the University of Utah's S.J.
Sackett v. Environmental Protection Association
Environment Experts in the media

For those media outlets looking to get a quote or hear from one of UO's environment experts, reach out to our media team.

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Shannon Boettcher, professor of chemistry at the University of Oregon, said direct air capture technologies are not yet cost-effective, and are worth some investment in research and development.

The National Science Foundation today announced $15 million in new funding over five years for the creation of the Cascadia Region Earthquake Science Center (CRESCENT). The facility will be based at the University of Oregon and the University of Washington will be a lead partner.

A recent initiative set its sights on capturing carbon in tropical savannas, an ecosystem characterized by shared space of trees and grasses. The project initiated a tree planting effort (afforestation) to capture carbon dioxide from the air, which resulted in stored carbon in two primary places: the woody biomass of the growing trees, and in soils.
The court’s exclusion of scientists from the environmental rule making process comes full circle as the EPA strips federal protections for wetlands, argues Adell Amos, University of Oregon School of Law.
In the U.S., seven campuses are particularly noteworthy for working to advance the cause of sustainability. No two schools have the exact same approach; they each have differing priorities and points that they focus on. But they've all got an interest in preserving our planet's livability and protecting their students' current and future quality of life.

Meeting in Ecuador, the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) works to solve sustainability issues facing communities. 


Story author Garrett Epps is a professor of practice in the School of Law. "Their legal team is largely made up of graduates of the University of Oregon law school, where I have taught, on and off, since 1992."

The School of Planning, Public Policy and Management (PPPM) is celebrating a competitive grant award earned by Associate Professor, Rebecca Lewis, and Assistant Professor, José Meléndez. The research team secured a competitive research grant from the Housing Solutions Lab, housed at the NYU Furman Center. 
Mary Wood's planning legal approach was at the heart of the landmark climate case. 
“I think folks in Alaska should take this seriously,” said Diego Melgar, a tsunami scientist at the University of Oregon not involved in the study. He says other U.S. coastal communities would benefit from such an analysis. “This is exactly what we need to be doing at a national level.”


Territorial Acknowledgement

The University of Oregon is located on Kalapuya ilihi, the traditional indigenous homeland of the Kalapuya people. Following treaties between 1851 and 1855, Kalapuya people were dispossessed of their indigenous homeland by the U.S. government and forcibly removed to the Coast Reservation in Western Oregon. Today, Kalapuya descendants are primarily citizens of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde and the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, and they continue to make important contributions to their communities, to the UO, to Oregon, and to the world.
In following the Indigenous protocol of acknowledging the original people of the land we occupy, we also extend our respect to the nine federally recognized Indigenous nations of Oregon: the Burns Paiute Tribe, the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians, the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde, the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, the Coquille Indian Tribe, the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians, and the Klamath Tribes. We express our respect to the many more tribes who have ancestral connections to this territory, as well as to all other displaced Indigenous peoples who call Oregon home.

MOU between UO and Oregon Tribes