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Environmental Sustainability Division

About ESSD

What We Do

We tackle complex, environmentally-related challenges to advance scientific understanding and improve technologies, systems, and regulatory processes using empowered staff, advanced computational tools and platforms, and well-equipped laboratories and field sites.


To transform energy and natural resource systems to be sustainable and resilient.


To create an environmentally sustainable world based on science, technology, economics, and social needs.

Strategic Thrusts

  • Control of Subsurface Systems

    Control of Subsurface Systems

    Deploy our geochemistry, geology, hydrology, microbiology, and computational expertise to enable technology innovation for sustainable energy development while addressing environmental remediation, waste disposal, and carbon sequestration changes.

  • Sustainable Hydropower

    Sustainable Hydropower

    Grow the engineering, ecology, hydrology, and computational expertise to develop decision-making tools and to enable technology innovation for development of new, sustainable hydropower and certification of existing hydropower.

  • Decisions Support for Climate-Ecosystem Impacts

    Decision Support for Climate-Ecosystem Impacts

    Build the science, environmental knowledge, decision-making tools, and computational expertise needed to deploy geospatial and other decision analysis tools to identify options for adapting to climate change.

Wayne Johnson

Wayne Johnson is the Division Manager of Earth Systems Science, overseeing approximately 250 staff. He has provided project management support to radiological sites, including Chernobyl and Fukushima. View his full biography.

Wayne Johnson

Illustrative example of technical group functions and interdependency Ecology Environmental Assessment Environmental Systems Geosciences Hydrology Risk and Decision Sciences

Earth Systems Science External

ESSD Capabilities

ESSD Technical Groups

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