On Dec. 16, Yale Foresters Unveil ‘Man Plans’ to Connecticut Landowners

From late September to early November, my classmates and I have spent some of nearly every weekend in the forests of northeast Connecticut. We are learning by doing – writing management plans for community members who own land around the Yale-Myers Forest.

All students begin their time at F&ES learning to measure trees at Yale-Myers Forest. This fall, 14 of my classmates and I have seen this come full circle. My team of three identified and measured over 1,500 trees on the 120-acre property we were assigned. We also practiced interpreting the landscape by “reading” the soils, rocks, plants and hydrology. This forms the baseline for the recommendations we will make.

The clients we work with have a strong connection to their land. Some have lived there for…

A Poker Score Card for COP 21: What They Mean, What They Hide, and How to Compare

This post was written by Authored by Jasmine Hyman of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Gediz Kaya of Gaia Carbon Finance.

All eyes are on Paris as the negotiation window closes upon an international climate agreement that is hopefully, historic. States are promising to take climate action, and by some calculations their cumulative promises cover 90% of global emissions. But most people are wondering, what is actually being promised anyway? However, there is considerable confusion on how they compare to each other, on who is doing what and when, and on how they will be implemented. This blog post is your poker scorecard to understanding what is actually being put on the table in Paris right now. If we’re gambling for climate sanity, these INDCs are…

Photo Credit: http://zeenews.india.com/ 25 May 2015

If you’ve been following the first week of COP21 events, you’ve likely noticed there’s one word consistently in the spotlight – ‘resilience.’ Over the last decade, resilience has moved from the field of ecology to a central concept in debates on climate change adaptation, vulnerability, food security and disaster risk reduction. While definitions differ, resilience at its heart focuses on the ability of people and ecosystems to recover after a shock.

In the face of rapid climate change and extreme weather events, building the resilience of vulnerable areas has become a goal for the international community. However, resilience is an abstract concept that can be difficult to quantify. How do we know if a community is becoming more resilient? What metrics and framework can we use to…

Author: Larry Rodman

Wednesday, December 3, the GCF held a side event called Deploying Resources of the Green Climate Fund: “What makes a good Project?” Later in the day, the GCF hosted a Q&A period at its pavilion at the conference center. Together, these events gave a picture of what the GCF has achieved so far.

After a slow start – the UNFCCC conceived the GCF 6 years ago in Copenhagen, and formally established it a year later in Cancun – the GCF has now approved 8 projects for funding, and in the last few days has even made a funds transfer for one project. The GCF has accredited 20 entities as funding conduits. Another 9 entities are in the last stages of accreditation, and as many as…

Apprentice Program Allows Foresters Space to Learn With Boots on the Ground

This post was written by Nick Olson, a second-year student in the Master of Forestry program at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.

“I have read many definitions of what is a conservationist, and written not a few myself, but I suspect that the best one 
is written not with a pen, but with an axe. It is a matter of what a man thinks about while chopping, or while deciding what to chop. A conservationist is one who is humbly aware that with each stroke he is writing his signature on the face of his land.”
—Aldo Leopold A Sand County Almanac

A favorite among woodsmen, Aldo Leopold’s adage still strikes a chord today. The sentiment guides many of us to the woods and not…

Yale Student Resources Outside FES

There are constantly events going on around FES: lecture series, talks, Student Interest Group meetings, and Forestry Club parties and TGIFs. But there are resources available to students outside of FES, and Foresters should take advantage of them!

To help with their academic work, students are invited to go to the Graduate Writing Center for individual writing consultations. The Center can help with research papers, personal statements, fellowship applications, presentations, journal articles, or anything else written!

Did you know that Yale has 13 libraries, and FES students can study at any of them? Check out library.yale.edu to see hours and descriptions of each. Sterling Memorial Library is my personal favorite–it was recently renovated and looks like a beautiful cathedral inside.

Arts buffs: I encourage you to see…

Author: Riddhima Yadav

In what has historically become one of the most well attended climate conferences, COP21 finally kicked off in Paris yesterday. More than 150 world leaders travelled to the French Capital to announce their commitments for what many hope would be a global climate treaty in the post 2020 period. But with all the momentum building, the Internet has been flooded with updates, articles, reports, tweets creating a social media storm. In the midst of this, I break down Day 1 in bite-sized pieces of information and bring to you the moments that shone. So if you are in Paris and running off to your next negotiation session or someplace else closely tracking the talks, make sure you catch up with the action on ground with this…

This post is authored by: Larry Rodman, Sachi Singh, Rachel Fried and Sam Geldin

The IPCC held its side event Monday evening, November 30, focused on communications strategies to help the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) make its work more accessible and actionable. The panel of speakers included Hoesung Lee, the new Chair of the IPCC, Paul Lussier, Director of the Yale Science Communications With Impact Network (SCWIN), Celia Blauel, Deputy Mayor, City of Paris, Ali Shareef, a Member of the UNFCCC Adaptation Committee, and Keith Tuffley, CEO, The B Team Business Leadership Initiative. Jonathan Lynn, Head of Communications of the IPCC moderated the panel.

The speakers discussed the need for the IPCC to leverage its reputation for rigorous science to reach a broader audience and find practical…

F&ES Volleyball Team wins Championship!

The victorious F&ES Hardwoods were named champions of the Graduate Co-Rec Intramural League for the fourth season in a row, reminding everyone on campus, that yes, FES is BEST.

PhD Life at F&ES

Most of our students at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies are Master’s candidates, but we also have many PhD students pursuing their doctorate degrees in a variety of disciplines. I interviewed a few PhD students about student life at F&ES, and they filled me in on their experiences as well as gave advice for prospective students.

“FES is a wonderful place to pursue a PhD with an environmental focus. It really is the best of both worlds – I’m a part of a hydrology- and biogeochemistry-focused lab group and a member of the broader FES community. This unique environment constantly reminds me of the importance of scientifically rigorous research that will help inform current environmental issues. I was lucky to earn my MESc degree from FES…