Esty, Connecticut Environment
Commissioner, Returns to Yale Post

Daniel Esty, the Yale professor who has served as commissioner of Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) since 2011, will return to Yale this semester, he and Gov. Dannel Malloy announced today.
Esty, who has appointments at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Yale Law School, was appointed by Malloy to oversee the consolidation of the state’s environmental and energy policies that previously had been administered by numerous government agencies.
dan esty yale fes
Yale F&ES
Daniel Esty
During his three-year term, Esty helped create the state’s first comprehensive energy policy, proposing new mechanisms to finance energy efficiency and renewable power projects, as well as tools to promote clean energy innovation and reduce energy costs.
“Dan Esty led the way in integrating and reinvigorating our approach to environmental regulation and energy policy and building a strong foundation for 21st century action,” Malloy said in a statement. “During the three years he served as Commissioner, innovative and breakthrough programs were put in place to successfully address long-standing environmental and energy challenges. In addition, steps were taken to lighten the burden of electricity costs, an issue that has created real problems for our families and businesses.

“I thank Commissioner Esty for all he has done in working closely with me to build a stronger future for Connecticut and I wish him all the best upon his return to his duties at Yale.”

At the heart of the state’s energy strategy was the passage of the nation’s first “green bank” — the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority — which uses private capital and other funds to provide low-interest loans to projects exploring cleaner and cheaper electricity technologies.
“It’s been a fabulous experience and has given me a chance to test in the real world many of the strategies and policies that I had been thinking and writing about for two decades as a Yale professor,” Esty said of his experience in Hartford.
“But I am excited about getting back into the classroom. It’s always been a particular joy to have Yale students to work with who dig into these complicated topics with great energy and enthusiasm.”
This semester (spring 2014) Esty will teach one course, Climate Change and the Quest for Clean Energy (F&ES 840b/LAW 21754).
It has given me a chance to test in the real world many of the strategies and policies that I had been thinking about and writing about for two decades as a Yale professor.
— Daniel Esty
“We are delighted to welcome Dan Esty back to the F&ES community after three years of distinguished service to the state of Connecticut,” said Peter Crane, dean of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. “His successful tenure as commissioner of DEEP has only strengthened his expertise in energy policy, sustainability strategy and environmental leadership.
“The students at F&ES will benefit enormously from the opportunity to study with him.”
Esty — who previously served in senior positions with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and as special adviser on President Obama’s transition team — said he was gratified that the state of Connecticut was able to make more progress on environmental and energy issues than could have been accomplished in Washington, D.C.
“It turns out that there are a number of issues — and both the environment and energy fit into this category — where progress, at least today, is easier to achieve at the state level than at the national level,” Esty said.
“I think it’s a lesson for many Yale students, as they think about their careers, that it might well be that they should go back to their home states to make a difference at the state level as opposed to aspiring to serve at the national government level.”
His current role in state government will officially conclude on Feb. 3.
– Kevin Dennehy    203 436-4842
PUBLISHED: January 15, 2014
Note: Yale School of the Environment (YSE) was formerly known as the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (F&ES). News articles posted prior to July 1, 2020, refer to the School's name at that time.