The Earth and Environment group studies the biophysical environment as an integrated system emphasizing the linkages and feedbacks between terrestrial, aquatic and atmospheric form and function. We focus on the interactions between the structure and composition of the earth’s surface, its soils, vegetation and water systems as well as the atmosphere, with those processes that actively cycle energy and material through them. We consider human society, through the activity of individuals and institutions, to be integral components of the earth system. Teaching and research focus on the roles of vegetation/climate interactions; the distribution and dynamics of water in the earth system; ecosystem cycling; the interactions of human society in modifying the earth’s surface, including land use/land cover change; and climate change and variability.

Faculty members and students work closely with various units including the curriculum in Ecology, Institute for the Environment, and the Carolina Population Center (CPC).

Associated Faculty

Larry Band, Xiaodong Chen, Chip Konrad, Aaron Moody, Diego Riveros-Iregui, Conghe Song, Steve Walsh, Erika Wise.