Geography of Kansas


RII: Track I

Climate Change and Energy: Basic Science, Impacts, and Mitigation

More than 60 Kansas scientists are collaborating on the Climate Change and Renewable Energy initiative, a massive research endeavor that has the potential to significantly affect the Kansas economy.

The National Science Foundation awarded $20 million to Kansas NSF EPSCoR in a five-year, Track I Award that began October 1, 2009. An additional $4 million in matching funds were contributed by the University of Kansas, Kansas State University and Kansas Technology Enterprise Corporation (KTEC).

Climate Change and Renewable Energy, is a multi-institutional, multi-sector effort that links four universities: Kansas State University, the University of Kansas, Wichita State University and Haskell Indian Nations University. Also participating are three Kansas-based companies, Abengoa Bioenergy, MGP Incredients and Nanoscale; and two companies outside the state: ADM (Illinois) and Netcrystals (California).

Natural scientists, social scientists and engineers representing many disciplines (agronomy, anthropology, computer science, economics, geography, mathematics, sociology, engineering, biology, chemistry and physics) (link to project personnel list) are working in teams on four distinct sub-projects:

Climate Change and Mitigation: Charles W. Rice, University Distinguished Professor of Agronomy at K-State, leads a group of researchers who use climate modeling tactics to predict the effects of climate change, for a better public understanding of the impacts of climate change; especially the affects on agriculture. 

Biofuels and Climate Change: Dietrich Earnhart, Professor of Economics at KU and colleagues assess how farmers make cultivation choices, leading to more informed policy decisions on biofuel and food crop cultivation, land conservation and surface water quality.

Nanotechnology for Renewable Energy: Judy Wu, University Distinguished Professor of Physics at KU, leads scientists and engineers in using nanotechnology to make major advances in solar energy capture and conversion.

Workforce Development and Climate Change in Indigenous Communities: Dan Wildcat, Dean of the School of Natural & Social Sciences (acting) at Haskell, Joane Nagel, University Distinguished Professor of Sociology at KU, works with tribal college students in exploring climate change and energy issues on Native American lands, while developing an educational pathway for Native American students and community college teachers to earn advanced degrees.

Kristin Bowman-James, Project Director at Kansas NSF EPSCoR, is the Principal Investigator for Phase VI: Climate Change and Energy.

Highlights - Research and Education

Future Goals

The mission of this project is:

Related links:

View the 2009 - 2014 NSF Award Abstract No. EPS-0903806
View the KS EPSCoR RII T1 Proposal - PDF
View the KS EPSCoR RII T1 Strategic Plan - PDF