The energy development needed to fuel our technologically advanced society requires informed evaluations of the effects on our fragile environment. Researchers in the EVS Division address this need by conducting rich and thorough analyses to create a framework for identifying the areas of public lands that are best suited for solar, wind, and geothermal projects.
In this work, we study land and resource management and planning, renewable resource development, and sustainability of resource management. We also assess environmental, social, and economic impacts.
Natural Resource Economics and Systems Analysis
EVS studies the role of energy and other natural resources in the economy, assesses and develops more sustainable methods for managing these resources, and analyzes environmental and energy policies related to fossil, nuclear, and renewable energy technologies.
For example, we analyze the life cycles of energy technologies and evaluate the impacts of air emissions. In addition, we determine water impacts and constraints on energy development and the sustainability of energy and environmental systems.
To address issues related to land management and land use planning, EVS analyzes appropriate resource use and allocation, potential impacts of management decisions, and mechanisms for protecting and restoring resources, both onshore and offshore.
In this effort, we conduct integrated assessments of federal energy development programs, as well as environmental, cultural, and socioeconomic impact analyses — including identification of effective mitigation measures. In addition, we develop geospatial and visualization technologies for assessing land management issues.
Cultural and Visual Resources
EVS develops innovative, effective methods for characterizing and mitigating impacts to cultural and visual resources from energy development and other activities. We analyze related issues of particular interest to Native American tribes, and we support federal agencies in their obligatory consultations with tribes.