News - Katie Warnell

All times U.S. ET unless noted.

As rising sea levels cause marshes to move inland in six mid-Atlantic states, the coastal zone will not continue to serve as a carbon sink but release more carbon into the atmosphere, a new modeling study led by researchers at Duke University finds.

On Earth Day, the Biden Administration announced an initiative to develop national measures called natural capital accounts that connect the value of ecosystem services to economic performance. In a Q&A, Warnell offered some insights into natural capital accounting: what exactly it measures, how it can help decision makers, and the work that lies ahead to implement a national system.

The Nicholas Institute has developed three online dashboards that make detailed data about North Carolina's forests, farmlands, and wetlands easily accessible to communities, land managers, non-governmental organizations, and the general public.

The Ashley National Forest has implemented and refined novel approaches to evaluate ecosystem services in a pilot project with Forest Service Research and Development, the Washington Office, Duke University and Environmental Management and Planning Solutions, Inc. as part of the forest plan revision process.

In a webinar hosted by The Pew Charitable Trusts, Lydia Olander and Katie Warnell discussed a model to map coastal carbon capture and storage—known as blue carbon—and existing coastal protection, which was then applied in states from New York to North Carolina.

The Nicholas Institute is applying the expertise of its professionals to rapidly evolving environmental and energy issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read four stories about how Nicholas Institute projects are meeting the moment.

To realize the goals of North Carolina's Executive Order 80, Nicholas Institute experts are working in partnership with state agencies, environmental nonprofits, utility commissions, and other stakeholders to develop policies that aim to fund clean energy, enhance carbon storage opportunities on natural and working lands, and reduce power sector emissions.

As Americans were put under stay-at-home orders and told to social distance this spring, many turned to parks for their mental and physical health. With travel and vacation limited in the coming months, they are increasingly looking to nearby parks to fill their recreational needs.

The Nicholas Institute was part of a stakeholder group that provided recommendations to manage the state's natural and working lands—forests, wetlands, agricultural lands, and coastal habitats—to enhance ecosystem and community resiliency and sequester carbon. A series of story maps created by the Nicholas Institute summarize data used in developing the plan and provide examples of how the information can be used at the local level.