The country that produces 10% of the world’s crops is now the world’s largest consumer of groundwater, and aquifers are rapidly becoming depleted across much of India.
Climate change is the issue of our time, and combating the climate crisis is global society’s greatest current challenge. A number of technological, business, and policy hurdles must be overcome to ensure the future vitality of both the natural and built environments.
Climate change and the built environment pose threats to ecosystems around the world. Interdisciplinary approaches — examining the interplay between the natural environment and human activity — can enrich conservation, restoration, and habitat management efforts going forward.
Low-income and underserved communities are poised to bear the greatest burdens of the climate crisis. Yet those same communities are least likely to access innovations in energy and infrastructure that could save lives and livelihoods. Environmental justice — across race, class, and gender — must be central to our efforts to tackle this global crisis.
Moving society toward a more sustainable future requires contributions from the public, private, and social sectors. Bold, equitable public policies, innovative business practices, and disruptions and adaptations within legacy industries can all help address the climate crisis.
An accessible, equitable, and ecologically sound food system is vital toward a sustainable world. Food systems extend beyond nutrition, and a number of actions must be taken to adequately address food’s role in climate change as well as persisting global hunger.
Advances in mobility, materials, and landscape architecture pose new opportunities for the world, and especially for the more than half of the global population that now resides in cities. As we face the climate crisis, new strategies for the built environment will be necessary to ensure the health of distinct communities and the natural environment.
Water is essential to our planet. Without it, there is no life. But there are many environmental challenges that need to be addressed to ensure the continued health and safety of water resources worldwide.
Climate change and other environmental crises threaten to harm overall human health and exacerbate existing gaps in health equity. In charting the path ahead, public health professionals and sustainability researchers alike must address how our changing global climate impacts air quality, food sources and supply chains, the spread of infectious disease, mental and community health, and other dynamic processes.
Multidisciplinary Leadership from 800+ Experts
U-M faculty are on the forefront of leading research, teaching, and engagement efforts on an array of environmental topics. Researchers contribute their interests and expertise, enabling the university to serve as a nexus for ideas and far-reaching solutions.
President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality
Developing scalable and transferable recommendations for U-M to achieve carbon neutrality, across all three campuses and Michigan MedicineLearn More about the President's Commission on Carbon Neutrality
Planet Blue Campus
Empowering students, staff, and faculty to get involved in sustainability work on campus, at home, and in the communityGet Involved with Planet Blue
Office of Campus Sustainability
Collaborating with academic and research units, auxiliary units, and student groups to pursue U-M’s Sustainability GoalsLearn More about the Office of Campus Sustainability
The threats posed by the climate crisis extend far beyond the U-M campus and community. By bringing together academics, activists, and community leaders, U-M, as a top public research university, has a distinct opportunity to help chart the path forward.
As the nation's largest public research university, the U-M Office of Research (UMOR) aims to catalyze, support, and safeguard U-M research.
Climate change. Population growth. Food access. Water quality. The world needs bold leaders willing to take on urgent environmental issues, now more than ever. The School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS) is focusing on the future, transforming research into action to create a healthier planet for all.
The Graham Sustainability Institute catalyzes and facilitates sustainability-focused collaborations involving faculty, students, and external stakeholders. Graham links knowledge to real-world impact by supporting teams spanning multiple topics, disciplines, and sectors.
The Erb Institute — a partnership between U-M’s Ross School of Business and the School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS) — aspires to create a socially and environmentally sustainable world through the power of business. Erb conducts research, teaching, and business engagement; all focused on preparing and supporting bold business leaders who can adeptly transform companies, industries, and entire economies for systemic sustainability.
Michigan Engineering strives to anticipate the changes ahead and provide scientific and technological leadership for the common good. It is home to top-ranked departments that collaborate within the nation’s number one public research institution.
With more than 100 degree programs in over 75 academic units, the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) is the largest of U-M’s 19 schools and colleges and is still at the heart of the university. The college is built upon the idea that a powerful, pragmatic, broad education can transform hearts and minds, can solve problems in an ever-changing world, and can yield ideas and innovation across every discipline.
The U-M School of Public Health is pursuing a healthier, more equitable world through education, research, and action. The School of Public Health works with compassion, innovation, and inclusion to create meaningful, lasting impact.
The Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan is a community dedicated to the public good. It inspires and prepares diverse leaders grounded in service, conducts transformational research, and collaborates on evidence-based policymaking to take on our communities' and our world's most pressing challenges.
Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan aims to create a more beautiful, inclusive, and better environment for generations to come. Through interdisciplinary education and research, Taubman College prepares graduates for positions of responsibility within a wide spectrum of professions, organizations, and institutions that shape the built environment at scales ranging from local to global.
The Institute for Social Research (ISR) is the world’s largest academic social science survey and research organization. It is a leader in developing and applying new social science methods, and is committed to educating the next generation of social scientists.
Each year, competition heats up in the winter as students, faculty and staff strive to win the Campus Race to Zero Waste (Formerly Recyclemania). The...
Learn more about study programs around the world, scholarships and other financial aid resources, the CGIS application process, courses in your major,...
UM Sustainable Food Program working groups serve as a creative, free-thinking space where the needs and wishes directly from students can be realized,...
In The News
The Carbon Neutrality Acceleration Program at U-M’s Graham Sustainability Institute has awarded research grants to seven projects aimed at reducing net carbon emissions. The first round of funding was awarded to projects that investigate groundbreaking energy-storage and carbon-capture technologies, innovative ways to reduce carbon emissions in agriculture, and new options for lowering the carbon footprint of U-M student diets.
Robotic laboratories on the bottom of Lake Erie have revealed that the muddy sediments there release nearly as much of the nutrient phosphorus into the surrounding waters as enters the lake’s central basin each year from rivers and their tributaries.