Dr Gene Likens - Biography

Dr. Likens exiting the White House after having received the National Medal of Science

Dr. Gene Likens, Director of the Institute of Ecosystem Studies, will be the guest speaker at CEI’s 30th Anniversary Community Salute to the Environment. Dr. Likens, with colleagues, was the first to document the link between the increasing acidity of precipitation and fossil fuel combustion in North America and the long-term consequences of this phenomenon—acid rain.

For over 40 years Dr. Likens research has been focused on long-term study of forest and associated aquatic ecosystems in the Hubbard Brook (N.H.) Experimental Forest. This research has been supported continuously by the USDA Forest Service and the National Science Foundation which dedicated the reserve as a Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER)site in 1988.

Dr. Likens (Ph.D, University of Wisconsin) holds numerous honorary degrees and was on the faculty at Dartmouth and Cornell prior to founding the Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, New York.

He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and past president of the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, Ecological Society of America, and American Institute of Biological Sciences.

He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards in the U.S. and abroad including the Tyler Prize (the World Prize for Environmental Achievement) 1993; the Blue Planet Prize, 2003; and the National Medal of Science, (2001).

Dr. Likens work and the attention it commanded led to national legislation addressing the effects of acid rain. His approach has raised awareness of the connections between human activities and the ecosystems upon which humans are dependent and it is now a model in the application of ecological science to finding solutions for global environmental problems, including deforestation, the greenhouse effect, acid rain, and eutrophication.

Congressman James T. Walsh - Biography

Congressman James T. Walsh

Congressman James T. Walsh (25th, NY) will be honored with CEI’s Environmental Leadership Award on October 20.

Congressman Walsh’s support for the Lake Ontario Coastal Initiative to restore, protect and provide for sustainable use of New York’s North Coast, is the latest of many actions that he has taken over the years to remediate and protect upstate New York’s environment, including the restoration of Onondaga Lake.

Walsh represents New York’s 25th Congressional District which includes Onondaga County, northern Cayuga County, Wayne County, and the northeastern portion of Monroe County. He is one of 13 chairmen of the Appropriations Subcommittees which have influence on national spending policies. He was recently described by the Buffalo News as “commonly seen as New York’s most powerful House member.”

Walsh has been the sponsor or co-sponsor of a broad range of environmental legislation to restore the Great Lakes, reduce acid rain, prohibit oil and gas drilling in the Finger Lakes National Forest, elevate the EPA to cabinet status, support organic farming and farmland preservation, the New York City watershed, wilderness designation, elimination of commercial logging on federal public lands and prevention of invasive species.

He is a member of the Honorary Board of Republicans for Environmental Protection (REP) and is one of 20 bipartisan sponsors of the Climate Stewardship Act recently introduced in the House to cap and trade greenhouse gas emissions to levels emitted in 2000, a companion measure to bi-partisan Senate legislation introduced in January.

“Congressman Walsh has demonstrated his care and concern about the health of upstate New York’s natural resources for many years,” said S. Ram Shrivastava, chairman of CEI’s Board of Directors. “He has recognized the importance of a healthy environment as the foundation for economic re-vitalization of our region. We are pleased and proud to honor him with this Environmental Leadership Award in CEI’s 30th Anniversary year.”