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Professors Alan Jenn and Alissa Kendall Helping to Shape National Climate Policy

In a groundbreaking shift from the past, the Fifth National Climate Assessment (NCA5) has comprehensively addressed some of the strategies and measures that are needed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and curb the worst effects of climate change. UC Davis Assistant Professor Alan Jenn and Professor Alissa Kendall both played significant roles in developing this comprehensive assessment.

The NCA, mandated by Congress and conducted every four years, serves as a pivotal document in synthesizing the current understanding of climate change and its impacts across the nation. Its interdisciplinary approach and emphasis on regional analyses make it an invaluable resource for policymakers, researchers, and the public in formulating responses to the multifaceted challenges posed by climate change.

Prof. Jenn, recently hired in the CEE department, applies his expertise at the intersection of energy and transportation, especially in the realm of electric vehicles, and was an author on the new mitigation chapter. His work highlights the technical pathways to a low, and eventually no-carbon transportation system while also emphasizing the need for strategies that are sustainable, healthy, and fair.

Prof. Jenn remarks, "The inclusion of a dedicated chapter on mitigation in the NCA5 underscores the shift in our climate discourse from mere recognition of the problem to actively seeking solutions. Mitigation is no longer a peripheral consideration but a central tenet in our fight against climate change. This chapter not only highlights the urgency of action but also the innovative pathways we can adopt to build a sustainable future."

The chapter on transportation includes Prof. Kendall as a contributor and addresses especially the co-benefits to air quality and climate that can result from a transition to a decarbonized transportation infrastructure if smart decisions are made that center environmental justice.

Prof. Jenn and Prof. Kendall’s contributions exemplifies the department's commitment to addressing global challenges through research and innovation.