_sp17-newsmakers ("Graduate Student Newsmakers")
Graduate Student Newsmakers
“The next time you’re at a farmers’ market, instead of asking your favorite vendor about their tomatoes, try asking them about their lease.”
Adam Calo, Graduate Student, Environmental Science, Policy, and Management (ESPM)
In the October 28, 2016, San Francisco Chronicle op-ed “For Farmers, This Land Is Often Someone Else’s,” Calo discussed the challenges faced by a growing number of tenant farmers in the United States, who are often pulled between their visions and a landowner’s ultimate authority. Calo called for a dialogue on equitable agriculture leases, sharing of profits resulting from capital improvements on farmland, and incentives for long-term agricultural decisions.
“The thick salt crusts kept underneath a precious record of a period when these flatlands hosted lakes and wetlands.”
Marco Pfeiffer, Graduate Student, ESPM
A December 15, 2016, BBC news article was one of many news posts on Pfeiffer’s discovery of the remnants of freshwater plants and animals buried in the arid plains of Chile’s Atacama Desert. Although it is now considered the driest place on Earth, the desert may once have been more lush—even habitable—Pfeiffer’s research suggests.
“If there’s a forest, you don’t want to cut it down and put a solar plant there.”
Ranjit Deshmukh, Graduate Student, Energy & Resources Group
A November 2016 Nature news feature on renewable energy sources in Africa highlighted research co-authored by graduate students Deshmukh and Grace Wu. The researchers combined geospatial data with satellite and ground measurements to generate a comprehensive report on planning renewable energy zones in 21 African countries.