The Environmental Initiative (EI) is an interdisciplinary program of academics, research, and outreach whose overall mission is to advance humanity's understanding and awareness of our role in and interaction with our natural environment through research, teaching, and outreach. The EI enables interdisciplinary efforts that transcend typical departmental and college boundaries in degree programs, problem-based research projects, and environmental education for school children, policy-makers, and the general public. The EI consists of faculty, staff and students from all four colleges of Lehigh, including two core departments, Earth & Environmental Sciences (EES), and Civil & Environmental Engineering (CEE).  For more information contact Co-Directors Derick Brown dgb3@lehigh.edu or Donald Morris dpm2@lehigh.edu

Marcellus Shale

Because hydraulic fracturing or fracking of Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania was a major environmental controversy that was getting a great deal of media coverage, it was the ideal subject for a research and writing project in a Lehigh course called "Environment, the Public and the Mass Media." In the fall of 2012, 13 undergraduate students from various majors including Environmental Studies and Science and Environmental Writing spent half a semester researching fracking in the academic literature and the mass and social media. They also listened to three guest speakers and interviewed scientists, industry experts, environmental activists and affected citizens. This intense study culminated in a series of papers, each on an aspect of the fracking controversy, written to serve as a Web guide for readers, particularly students. 

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