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



By the Numbers


National Ranking of two programs within UO's School of Architecture & Environment


 Consecutive years UO's sustainable MBA is in the Princeton Review's top 5 Green MBAs


U.S. News and World Report ranking of UO's Environmental Law Program at the School of Law


Researchers working on the environment


National ranking on Sierra Club’s list of “Cool Schools” (2019)


Years since the Environmental Studies Program began

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.

Contact Media Relations

The University of Oregon has earned Gold level Bicycle Friendly University status from the League of American Bicyclists. The Bicycle Friendly University status is an independent third-party accreditation process. The review covers many fields, including bicycle advocacy, planning, infrastructure, education, promotion, support, equity, achievements and future plans.
In her inspiring and transformative guidebook, author Loren Swift shares uplifting stories and helpful practices for creating healthy relationships, nurturing stronger communities and inspiring positive global change through personal leadership
So, the big question is: why are ochre sea stars returning, while sunflower stars have practically disappeared? Scientists say one of the places on Oregon’s South Coast where sea star research like this has been conducted for years could offer clues: Cape Blanco.
In the new study published Monday in the Proceedings of the Natural Academy of Sciences, scientists considered not just the amount of change to the oceans that could precede a tipping point, but also the rate of change.
Together, the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation, the Office of the Provost, and the Graduate School annually host and sponsor the UO Outstanding Teaching, Research, and Mentorship Awards. The research awards celebrate the significant achievement of UO faculty members engaged in research and scholarly activity.
A postdoctoral researcher at the University of Oregon has shown that linking pollen records to plant traits works to reconstruct the benefits ecosystems provide for humans. It’s an approach that can now be used confidently to examine how the benefits, or services an ecosystem provides, have responded to disturbances over the past 21,000 years, said Thomas Brussel, a researcher in the Department of Geography.
Students from the Oregon Consulting Group (OCG) are helping shape the future of transportation in Lane County (and possibly the world), collaborating with the electric vehicle manufacturer Arcimoto to launch a vehicle rental program based in Eugene. With student input, a city-wide rental program for Arcimoto’s electric vehicles is tentatively set to launch in time for the Oregon ’22 World Athletics Championship to be held at Hayward Field.
The University of Oregon has received a $4.52 million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support a new initiative envisioning a transformative research platform for racial and climate justice. It is the largest humanities award in UO history.
The forest-savanna borderlands, known as the Amazon-Cerrado transition, experience broad climatic and ecological influences. The study addressed uncertainties related to those influences in the tropical ecosystem, said Silva, a professor in the Environmental Studies Program, Department of Geography and Institute of Ecology and Evolution.
A University of Oregon-led research team has identified tropical peatland in Indonesia that is twice as old and much deeper than previously thought. The findings, published in Environmental Research Letters, provide new insights about the climate of equatorial rainforests, especially during the last ice age, said study co-author Dan Gavin, a professor of in the Department of Geography.

Social Connections


    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.