Jens Birkholzer has been appointed Director of the new Energy Geosciences Division within the recently formed Earth & Environmental Sciences Area of Berkeley Lab. His appointment is effective immediately. The Climate & Ecosystem Sciences Division was also established today.
The Energy Geosciences Division’s mission is to create advanced knowledge, methods, and capabilities for sustainable utilization and management of the Earth’s subsurface. The division’s scientists integrate cutting-edge numerical, observational and experimental approaches in both fundamental and applied research projects to promote safe subsurface storage of energy by-products such as CO2 or nuclear waste. They also enhance subsurface recovery from renewable sources such as geothermal energy, and improve the efficiency and environmental sustainability of oil and gas production from conventional and unconventional resources.
An important goal of the division is the development and application of next-generation solutions for assessing and reducing the environmental and other impacts of subsurface energy applications.
“Spanning the full range of fundamental through applied research, and with Jens Birkholzer as the new Director, the Energy Geosciences Division is poised to transform our ability to utilize the Earth’s subsurface as needed for the Nation’s energy and environmental security,” says Susan Hubbard, the Associate Laboratory Director for the Earth & Environmental Sciences Area.
About Jens Birkholzer
Birkholzer, a Senior Scientist at Berkeley Lab, is an internationally recognized hydrologist who joined the Lab in 1994. He has made substantial scientific contributions, particularly on quantifying coupled thermal-hydrological-mechanical-chemical processes associated with subsurface geological carbon sequestration and nuclear waste storage.
Birkholzer has held many national and international research leadership positions. At Berkeley Lab, he leads the nuclear energy and waste storage program, co-leads the Energy Resources Program Area and since 2013 has served as a Deputy Director for the Earth Sciences Division. Most recently, he led a technical team to assess the potential impact of well stimulation (fracking) in California, the first study in the Nation to provide a science underpinning that can be used to guide regulations. Go here for more information about Jens Birkholzer.
About the Earth & Environmental Sciences Area
The Energy Geosciences Division joins the Climate & Ecosystem Sciences Division, which was also established today, as the two divisions in the Earth & Environmental Sciences Area, which was announced in March. These new divisions replace the Earth Sciences Division.
The mission of the Earth & Environmental Sciences Area is to create new knowledge and capabilities needed to enable sustainable stewardship of critical environmental systems and judicious use of the Earth’s subsurface energy. It integrates expertise in environmental and biological system science, climate sciences, fundamental geosciences, and subsurface energy resources to tackle some of the most pressing environmental and energy challenges of the 21st Century.