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The environmental impacts of marijuana in California

News / July 8, 2015


In a new study in the journal BioScience, a team of researchers including Stanford professor Roz Naylor links marijuana cultivation to widespread environmental damage in California and calls for greater regulation of the crop’s impact on natural ecosystems.

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FSE director Roz Naylor to give Ned Ames Honorary Lecture

News / April 10, 2015

FSE director Roz Naylor has been selected to deliver the 6th annual Ned Ames Honorary Lecture at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, NY on Friday, April 24. Her lecture on "Feeding the World in the 21st Century," is free and open to the public, and a video recording of the event will be available on the Cary Institute's website shortly after the talk.

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Stanford PhD student wins NSF grant for palm oil research

News / April 7, 2015

Tannis Thorlakson, a first-year PhD candidate in the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources (E-IPER) in Stanford's School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Science, has won a three-year grant from the National Science Foundation to support coursework and research on the palm oil industry in Indonesia. Thorlakson's proposed project, "Is Certification Enough?

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Human conflict heats up with global warming

News / April 6, 2015

A chance course at Stanford and a study-abroad trip to Nepal changed the trajectory of Marshall Burke's career, leading him to a human-focused approach studying climate change. His latest work deals with the link between rising temperatures and human violence. 

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Crop yield research by David Lobell named best of 2014

News / March 13, 2015

A July 2014 research paper co-authored by FSE deputy director David Lobell is one of 25 articles selected by the editors of the scientific journal Environmental Research Letters to be featured in the journal's Highlights of 2014 collection. The Editorial Board also recognized the paper as 'Highly Commended' during the vote for ERL's 'Best Article' for 2014.

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European grain yield stagnation related to climate change

News / February 20, 2015

The European Union led the world in wheat production and exports in 2014-15. Yet Europe is also the region where productivity has slowed the most. Yields of major crops have not increased as much as would be expected over the past 20 years, based on past productivity increases and innovations in agriculture.

Finding the causes of that stagnation is key to understanding the trajectory of the global food supply.

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Pioneer of sustainable agriculture calls for intensification of farming

News / February 11, 2015

In a lecture to the Stanford community Tuesday night, Professor Sir Gordon Conway argued that sustainably intensifying agriculture, especially in Africa, is the only way to feed a growing global population without greatly expanding the amount of land used for farming. Sir Gordon is an agricultural ecologist and was an early pioneer of sustainable agriculture while working in Malaysia in the 1960s.

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Climate change could expand double cropping in the U.S.

News / February 5, 2015

In a new study in the journal Environmental Research Letters, Stanford PhD student Christopher Seifert and professor David Lobell find that between 1988 and 2012, the area of farmland in the United States on which farmers were able to harvest two crops per year on the same plot of land grew by as much as 28 percent as a result of warmer temperatures and later fall freezes.

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Chinese aquaculture can tip the balance in world fish supplies

News / January 8, 2015

China's booming aquaculture industry relies increasingly on fishmeal made from wild-caught fish. This practice risks depleting wild fish stocks and strains fragile ocean ecosystems, but a new FSE-led study offers a more sustainable path.

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A new crop modeling technique confirms that wheat yields are vulnerable to rising temperatures

News / December 22, 2014

To predict how agriculture will be affected by future climate change, scientists often rely on a single crop model – a computer simulation of how a specific crop’s yield responds to temperature changes. By combining 30 such models into a single study, and comparing each model against data from existing experimental wheat fields around the world, a team of researchers including Stanford professor David Lobell have developed a more powerful and accurate way to predict future wheat yields.

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Roz Naylor named William Wrigley Professor in Earth Science

News / December 15, 2014

Rosamond (Roz) Naylor has been named the first holder of the new William Wrigley Professorship in the School of Earth Sciences. Since 2006 Naylor has directed the Center on Food Security and the Environment, within the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. She is also associate professor, by courtesy, of Economics at Stanford.

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FSE in Rome to discuss food security with UN agencies

News / December 4, 2014

FSE director Roz Naylor and faculty affiliate Stephen Stedman met with representatives of the UN agencies in Rome on December 3 and 4, 2014 to discuss global food security issues and to present key research highlights from Professor Naylor's recent book 

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Former ambassador, political scientist McFaul to lead FSI

News / November 5, 2014

Michael McFaul, a Stanford political scientist and former U.S. ambassador to Russia, has been selected as the next director of the university’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies.

The announcement was made Wednesday by Stanford Provost John Etchemendy and Ann Arvin, the university’s vice provost and dean of research. McFaul will succeed Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, who was nominated in July as an associate justice of the California Supreme Court and elected Tuesday.

McFaul takes the helm of FSI in January.

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FSE on the road

News / October 14, 2014

Faculty and scholars from the Center on Food Security and the Environment are delivering three major lectures this week around the U.S. and the world, on a wide range of food security topics.

On Tuesday, October 14, FSE deputy director David Lobell will speak to an audience of employees of Cargill, in Minneapolis, on the impacts of climate change on agriculture. 

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Blowin' in the wind: Dispatches from the Iowa farm

Commentary / September 8, 2014

It is August again, and my wife and I are back on our farm. We have a medium-sized operation in east-central Iowa that produces soybeans, alfalfa, and corn, and that also supports an Angus cow-calf herd. These summers are supposed to be quiet, relaxing times away from the bustle of Stanford University. However, the days here seem anything but tranquil.  Two years ago my almanac report dealt with one of the worst droughts in Iowa’s history; last year the focus was on flooding and the wettest planting season on record.  I suppose it is only fair that wind should be the main topic this year.

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New farming practices can increase yields and lower pollution in China

News / September 7, 2014

Farming practices in China could be designed to simultaneously improve yields and reduce environmental damages substantially, according to a new study by Stanford biology professor Peter Vitousek and a team of his colleagues at China Agricultural University.

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Calculating the risk of slowing crop yields

News / July 9, 2014
New research from FSE associate director David Lobell shows that the chance of a global slowdown in agricultural yield growth in the next 20 years is significantly higher due to global warming.
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