Carolina Environmental Program serves as point of contact for learning about
both individual faculty and group environmental research on the Carolina campus.
But, because our most pressing environmental problems tend to be large-scale
and complex, it actively fosters the development of interdisciplinary teams
and projects involving researchers from across the entire campus.
Since its inception in
1998, the CEP has coordinated the submission of multidisciplinary project proposals
in the areas of environmental modeling, sustainable transportation and sustainable
communities, teleworking and risk assessment. Six of the projects have been
funded and will bring a total of $2 million to the University over the next
three years. A number of other proposals are currently under review by potential
In addition, three large research initiatives are being developed. They received
planning support from the Ford Motor Company Fund
and the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation. A primary
goal of all of these initiatives is to implement projects that will help build
a more sustainable society. These initiatives are the Earth, Environment and
Society Initiative, the Center for Sustainable Enterprise and the Rural Sustainable
Mobility and Sustainable Rural Communities Project.
Earth, Environment and Society Initiative
The Earth, Environment and Society Initiative is led by Voit Gilmore Professor
and Department of Geography Head,
Larry Band. The initiative
examines various aspects of how natural systems work and how human activity
affects and is affected by those systems. Initial emphasis has been placed on
questions of water quality and water resources, especially in the context of
the massive flooding in Eastern North Carolina in 1999 and, to a lesser extent,
in 1996. These questions focus primarily on watershed changes, their causes
and impacts. Methods for mitigating related problems are also being explored.
Center for Sustainable Enterprise
Initiatives in sustainable development, sustainable enterprise and the business
"triple bottom line" are a joint endeavor with the Kenan-Flagler
Business School led by Professor and Co-Director Stu
Hart of the Center for Sustainable
Enterprise. The Centers initiative in sustainable development and
sustainable enterprise started by identifying faculty strengths and by building
teams. Now that the Center is operational, its work focuses upon sustainable
enterprise and development under Stu Hart, and on rural poverty, underdevelopment
and environmental equity under Center Co-Director Jim
Johnson. Research projects target problems with a high degree of salience,
both for North Carolina and the world.
Rural Sustainable Mobility and Rural Sustainable Communities Project
The Rural Sustainable Mobility and Rural Sustainable Communities Project (RSMP)
is designed to derive and test innovative mobility approaches that will assist
rural regions of the world in achieving economic prosperity and social welfare.
The Carolina Environmental Program is organizing
the RSMP, with participation from Kenan
Institute Asia, Center for
Sustainable Enterprise, the UNC Department
of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, the UNC Department
of City and Regional Planning and its Carolina Transportation Program, and
North Carolina State University's Department
of Chemical Engineering. The CEP's Thailand
Field Site and Albemarle
Ecological Field Site (Manteo, North Carolina) will serve as field bases
for the RSMP.