Earth & Environmental Sciences

The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences (E&ES) at Wesleyan University covers many aspects of the natural world, on Earth and on other planets.  Our investigations range from active volcanoes to climate change and eco-conservation to the fate of water on Mars and the Moon.  Our students perform cutting edge research in our own backyard and around the world.  Our graduates enter jobs in Earth and environmental industries, the non-profit sector and academia. 


AGU '23

Wesleyan professors and students attending the AGU (Advancing Earth and Space Sciences) annual meeting December 11th-15th in San Francisco included Suzanne OConnell, Dana Royer, Helen Poulos, Gebremedhin Haile, Xiaoqing Zhang, Kelly Fenton-Samuels, Shelagh Coombs and Helen Deretchin. Martha Gilmore did not attend however co-authored an abstract that was presented. Abstracts presented:

Fenton-Samuels, K., OConnell, S., Hemming, S.R., and Reilly, B.T., (2023) Mid-to-Late Pliocene ice sheet dynamics and related climate changes at IODP Site U1537: Iceberg Alley. Trans. AGU, Fall Meeting Suppl. Abstract PP21C-1320 

Ibrahim, H., Jasper, C.J., Modestou, S., OConnell, S., Takeda, S., Thulasi, T., and IODP Expedition 395 Scientists. (2023) Lithostratigraphic Observations of Marine Sediments from Eirik Drift Site U1602, North Atlantic. Trans. AGU, Fall Meeting Suppl., Abstract PP21C-1325 

Coombs, S., OConnell, S., Fenton-Samuels, K., Briais, A., Parnell-Turner, R., LeVay, L., and IODP Expedition 395 Scientists. (2023). Sedimentary record of ocean dynamics during the Mid-Pleistocene transition at IODP Site U1554 (Björn Drift) in the North Atlantic. Trans. AGU, Fall Meeting Suppl., Abstract PP21C-1326

Wang, C., Hemming, S.R., OConnell, S., Rasbury, T., Williams, T., ReillyB.T., and Brachfeld, S.A. (2023) Sedimentary record and ice sheet history of the mid-Pleistocene transition in the eastern Weddell Sea: insights from ODP Site 693 off Dronning Maud Land

Mesozoic Climate change and CO2 concentration variation - paleobotanical evidence from China

CO2 Proxy Integration Project (CO2-PIP): a community project for quantifying atmospheric CO2 over the Phanerozoic

Venus Nightside Thermal Emission and Geology from the Wide-field Imager for Solar PRobe.

Examining drivers of wildfire severity and post-fire recovery using ECOSTRESS land surface temperature and evapotranspiration data

Detecting Patterns of Post-Fire Pine Regeneration in a Madrean Sky Island with Field surveys and Remote Sensing

UAV and ECOSTRESS-based estimates of forest canopy temperature changes in response to thinning and climate extremes

'Meet Our Researchers' highlights researchers on campus

A new exhibit in Olin Library celebrates how researchers from all parts of our community—undergrads to emeriti—understand and build upon the entirety of what we know about ourselves, each other, and the environment in which we live. From chemistry to karaoke and paleontology to politics, the eight researchers profiled exemplify Wesleyan’s diverse interests and impacts across disciplines. One of the featured researchers is our own Harold T. Stearns Professor of Integrative Sciences, Emerita, Ellen Thomas.

Meet Our Researchers is located in Olin’s West Corridor and will be on display through this academic year. You can read more about the featured researchers online. 

Suzanne OConnell

Suzanne O'Connell was featured in United States Ocean Discovery Programs, highlighting her dedication to research, the ocean drilling expeditions she has taken part in, and her commitment to education. Throughout her career, Suzanne has had many accomplishments, specifically her impact on science and her dedication to social justice. To read the article in its entirety, please follow this link.

Ellen Thomas has won the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge

Ellen Thomas has won the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in the climate change category. This is an extraordinary international award that was established in 2008 to acknowledge significant contributions in the areas of scientific research and cultural creation. The recipients in the Climate Change category, in which Ellen is now a recipient, Reads like who’s who in climate research.

A film crew visited campus to interview Ellen Thomas, please open the link to the video:

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