Joseph Romm Joins the Penn Center for Science, Sustainability and the Media

Joseph Romm

Joseph Romm, a leading expert on climate solutions and clean energy—and on communicating about these issues to the public—has joined the Penn Center for Science, Sustainability and the Media (PCSSM) as a Senior Research Fellow.

Romm holds a Ph.D. in physics from MIT and has authored countless articles and 10 books in the areas of climate change, clean energy, and communications. In the 1990s, Romm spent five years working on climate solutions at the U.S. Department of Energy. For three years, he helped to run the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, ultimately serving as Acting Assistant Secretary, where he oversaw $1 billion in R&D and demonstration of low-carbon technologies. This included renewables, building efficiency, industrial decarbonization, energy storage, bioenergy, hydrogen, and electric cars.
In 2008, Romm was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for “distinguished service toward a sustainable energy future and for persuasive discourse on … sustainable technologies.” In 2009, Rolling Stone named him one of 100 “people who are reinventing America,” and Time named him “Hero of the Environment” and “the Web’s most influential climate-change blogger.” Romm was Chief Science Advisor for the Emmy-winning docuseries, “Years of Living Dangerously.” His Oxford University Press book, Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know, 3rd Edition, was called “the best single-source primer on the state of climate change” by New York Magazine.

Michael Mann, Presidential Distinguished Professor of Earth and Environmental Science and the director of PCSSM, said, “We welcome Dr. Romm to Penn and we look forward to working with him in advancing the study and practice of effective climate communication. I have personally known Joe for nearly two decades, since the time I was an early career climate scientist who found myself caught in the crosshairs of the climate change denial machine. Joe was one of the first scientists to confront industry-funded disinformation and taught us valuable lessons about science communication, lessons which I’ve taken to heart as I have focused more of my own time and effort on climate communication. We are now at a major crossroads when it comes to urgency of climate action, and I couldn’t be more delighted that Joe is joining us at Penn at this critical juncture in the climate battle.”

At Penn, Romm will be conducting research and producing a series of white papers examining the scalability of key proposed climate solutions, including the recently released “Are carbon offsets unscalable, unjust, and unfixable—and a threat to the Paris Climate Agreement?”  

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