Making communities greener, healthier, better designed places to live
Ann received a masters of Urban and Environmental Planning at the University of Virginia in 2007 and currently works for the Missoula Office of Planning and Grants in Missoula, Montana as a senior transportation planner.
She has spent the past 6 years working for land conservation groups in Virginia and Jackson Hole, Wyoming, teaching place-based environmental education and generally trying to figure out how we can create healthy communities where people want to live because of ample open space access, economic opportunities, transit choices and affordable housing. Local food, sustainable economic development, transportation planning and land conservation are a few of her planning areas of interest and expertise.
"I work, along with another Environmental Studies Program grad, Robert Ferguson, at a firm called Advanced Resources International. We're based in DC and primarily work in areas of Carbon Sequestration, Enhanced Recovery and Unconventional Resources.
Our Carbon Sequestration work is largely in support of the Department of Energy's Regional Carbon Sequestration Demonstration Partnerships where we help design and implement projects that will ultimately capture and store large volumes of CO2 from coal fired power plants. Last year, as a part of the second phase of one of these projects, we successfully injected and stored several thousand metric tons of CO2 into a reservoir in Mississippi underlaying a large power plant. The next phase of the project will entail capturing CO2 directly from the power plant and injecting it into this reservoir; to the tune of several million metric tons per year.
"Enhanced Recovery" is shorthand for recovering additional oil or gas from deposits than what would be possible under conventional methods. Here, we analyze the potential for injecting CO2 into oil fields and coal seams to help produce stranded hydrocarbons. While this might sound environmentally dubious, it's actually quite exciting. Using advanced technologies, it's possible to inject (and store) more CO2 to recover a barrel of oil than will be released when that oil is burned, thereby creating a net carbon sink. This idea is gaining traction on Capitol Hill and is being strongly lobbied for by the Natural Resources Defense Council. You can find some of our previous work in this area here: http://www.netl.doe.gov/energy-analyses/pubs/Storing%20CO2%20w%20Next%20Generation%20CO2-EOR.pdf.
Finally, our Unconventional Resources work focuses on the analysis and forecasting of natural gas production from tight sand, coalbed and shale gas deposits; reservoirs which require additional technology and investment to become economic when compared to conventional natural gas reservoirs. Until recently, we produced the unconventional natural gas production forecast used by the Energy Information Administration's Annual Energy Outlook."
"I'm currently working as an associate for Pricewaterhouse Coopers in Atlanta. My time at Washington and Lee was invaluable, and the school allowed me to pursue two of my diverse interests - accounting and environmental studies. The environmental studies program made a lasting impact on me, and I am grateful for the quality professors and students in the program. Everyone involved with the program is so dedicated and a pleasure to work with."
It wasn't until he came to Virginia from La Jolla, Calif., that Michael Thompson truly became an environmentalist. Through his studies as a geology major with a concentration in environmental studies, Thompson has discovered interests that are steering him toward a career in renewable energy.
Leader and Volunteer
With the skills Mackenzie Brown acquired during her summer internship, she could run a restaurant after she graduates next spring. It is more likely, however, that the environmental studies major will pursue a job in the field of sustainable development or with a non-profit.
Graduate Student, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Eaton, who received a master's in economics from UT, said his interest in environmental issues emerged from courses in the Environmental Studies Program, particularly the exchange with Brazil. It was there, he said, "I saw amazing places and some really unique environments."
Associate, Lincoln International, London
Lewis, a business administration and accounting major, is assisting Lincoln International's efforts to implement green practices in the investment bank's London office. Though the company already had in place recycling, reducing the use of air conditioners and turning off lights in unused rooms, its London and Chicago offices have collaborated to implement additional policies.
Senior Associate, Project Performance Corp., McLean, Va.
Wallace was one of W&L's first graduates to earn an environmental studies major. The Roanoke native now works for Project Performance Corp., which develops technology and strategic solutions for environmental issues, such as hazardous waste management, water pollution reduction and radiation protection.
W&L Student Profiles of Environmental Studies Minors:
We encourage alumni to join the W&L Environmental Studies Fan Page!