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Vanessa Lamers and Xin Zhang Receive 2012 Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy Research Prize Fellowship

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- The Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy (YCELP) announced today Vanessa Lamers and Xin Zhang as the two recipients of its 2012 student research prize competition. Lamers and Zhang, both students at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, will each receive a $7,500 Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy Research Prize Fellowship.

YCELP launched the competition last year to encourage innovative student research in the environmental law and policy arena. Recipients are chosen based on a number of criteria, including the originality, analytical soundness, and policy significance of their research proposals. Jasmine Hyman, a doctoral candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and the 2011 fellowship winner, used the award for her research on clean cookstoves in Cambodia.

Lamers, a joint-degree master’s student with the Yale School of Public Health, is studying water quality near shale gas development sites in southwestern Pennsylvania. Her project, entitled “Water Quality Assessment of Shale-gas Development of the Marcellus Shale in Washington County, Pennsylvania,” will provide rigorous data evaluating the link between development locations and water quality, as defined by chemical contamination, in the area. This research will help fill the void in current field-based data regarding the health impacts – on both humans and ecosystems – of hydraulic fracturing.

Zhang, a doctoral candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, is working to improve the reliability of national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories, which are essential to policymakers working on climate change. Since these inventories are largely based on voluntary reporting on a country-by-country basis, it is difficult to develop an accurate global picture of GHG emissions. Zhang’s project, entitled “Using the Global Observation Network to Improve National Greenhouse Gas Inventories,” will employ improved measurement techniques and atmospheric transportation models to see if they can improve national GHG inventory estimates.

The Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy seeks to advance cutting edge environmental thinking and policy analysis so that decisionmaking in the public, business, community, and personal realms promotes sustainability. For more information on the Center, or this year’s research prize competition, visit http://envirocenter.yale.edu.

For more information contact Ysella Yoder at ysella.yoder@yale.edu or 203.432.5967.



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