Report of the Climate Action Plan Review Committee

January 9, 2018
Maria T. Zuber, Vice President for Research |

To the members of the MIT community:

In late 2014, MIT began a campus-wide conversation to sharpen our thinking and identify the best path for MIT to make meaningful progress against the urgent global challenge of climate change. Following that conversation, and based on the thoughtful input gathered from across our community, in October 2015 MIT’s senior officers published a five-year plan of action — a comprehensive strategy for accelerating and coordinating MIT’s research, education, convening and campus operations to address this vital issue.

The plan has provided a useful framework for organizing a number of activities, including a major summit last month that brought together policymakers, researchers, and business and civic leaders with a focus on regional climate action. It has also helped us to make critical strides toward achieving our goal to significantly reduce the campus’s emissions of greenhouse gases. The Climate Action Advisory Committee, established in 2016, provides valuable advice on the implementation of the plan on an ongoing basis.

Last spring, President Reif created the ad hoc Climate Action Plan Review Committee, led by Institute Professor Emeritus John Deutch, and charged it to conduct an assessment of the Institute’s progress since the plan’s release and identify new opportunities for action. The committee has delivered a thoughtful and thought-provoking report. I write to share the committee’s views and invite your reactions at

I extend my deepest thanks to Professor Deutch and his faculty colleagues (named below) for the time, energy, expertise and care they dedicated to this important effort.

I am proud of the collaborative process that has defined the Institute’s work to address climate change. MIT remains deeply committed to rising to this historic challenge.


Maria T. Zuber
Vice President for Research

Climate Action Plan Review Committee

John Deutch, Institute Professor of Chemistry, Emeritus (Chair)

William Green, Hoyt C. Hottel Professor of Chemical Engineering

Paul Joskow, Elizabeth and James Killian Professor of Economics, Emeritus

Sheila Kennedy, Professor of Architecture

Ernest Moniz, Cecil and Ida Green Professor of Physics and Engineering Systems, Emeritus

Dava Newman, Apollo Program Professor of Astronautics

Rajeev Ram, Professor of Electrical Engineering

Richard Schmalensee, Howard W. Johnson Professor Management and Economics, Emeritus

Jessika Trancik, Associate Professor in Energy Studies