BRINGING WILD ENERGY TO UC DAVIS
The Wild Energy Initiative is a new initiative of the John Muir Institute of the Environment at UC Davis. The mission of the Muir Institute is to discover, research, and solve pressing environmental and human health challenges at a time of unprecedented social connectedness, technological development, and global change.
FOUNDERS AND DIRECTORS
The Wild Energy Initiative was conceived in 2016 by the founders, ecologists Dr. Rebecca R. Hernandez and Dr. Steve M. Grodsky, and launched in 2019. Today, they are working together to build a confluence of research addressing what they believe is the greatest challenge facing society, which is how to meet energy needs for humans while maintaining Earth’s ecosystems that humans depend on. They believe that the sum of a diverse team is greater than its parts.
DR. REBECCA R. HERNANDEZ
ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, DEPARTMENT OF LAND, AIR AND WATER RESOURCES
Dr. Rebecca R. Hernandez is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Land, Air, and Water Resources. Dr. Hernandez earned her Ph.D. in Earth System Science from Stanford University. Her research foci include the study of soils, energy, and global environmental change emphasizing water-limited ecosystems and human environments. Her work on interactions among energy, land, and the environment have been featured in Nature Climate Change, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Environmental Science & Technology, and Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews.
DR. STEVEN M. GRODSKY
NEED TITLE, DEPARTMENT OF LAND, AIR AND WATER RESOURCES
Dr. Grodsky is a renewable energy ecologist. His research program centers on the interface between plant and animal conservation and renewable energy development. He has studied effects of bioenergy, solar energy, and wind energy on a diversity of taxa, including plants, invertebrates, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and mammals. Currently, he is co-editor of the book Renewable Energy and Wildlife Conservation published with John Hopkin’s University Press (2019). Dr. Grodsky has published over 20 peer-reviewed papers on renewable energy and wildlife conservation and has been invited to speak nationally and internationally at conferences on energy ecology. He has taught courses in ecology, entomology, and wildlife. Presently, he is leading several projects involving solar energy and desert plants, butterflies, and kit foxes in the Mojave Desert.