AlumniPhD, Assistant Professor, Humboldt State University and Schatz Energy Research Laboratory Kevin Fingerman


My research is dri­ven by an inter­est in the broad-​​based envi­ron­men­tal and social impacts of energy tech­nolo­gies and poli­cies. This work seeks to make explicit the trade-​​offs that are often present between energy secu­rity, cli­mate, and other impor­tant social and envi­ron­men­tal objec­tives. In par­tic­u­lar, I have worked on issues at the water/​energy nexus, eval­u­at­ing the “water foot­prints” of a range of energy tech­nolo­gies. Water and energy are inex­tri­ca­bly linked, with elec­tric­ity gen­er­a­tion sec­ond only to agri­cul­ture in total global water with­drawals. This con­nec­tion is par­tic­u­larly acute for bioen­ergy, as it is by far the most water-​​intensive of all energy types. My research has employed life cycle assess­ment (LCA), agro-​​climatic mod­el­ing, and GIS tools to show that bio­fu­els rou­tinely require sev­eral orders of mag­ni­tude more water than petro­leum fuels while often pro­vid­ing only mod­est cli­mate benefit.

I approach my research with an eye toward imple­men­ta­tion. This has led me to work with Cal­i­for­nia reg­u­la­tory agen­cies on fuel pol­icy for­mu­la­tion and to serve as vice-​​chair of the Geneva-​​based Round­table on Sus­tain­able Bio­fu­els. Prior to com­ing to HSU, I worked in Rome for the United Nations Food and Agri­cul­ture Orga­ni­za­tion. While there, I pro­vided sup­port to the gov­ern­ments of Indone­sia and Colom­bia in eval­u­at­ing the envi­ron­men­tal and social impacts of their bio­fuel indus­tries, and in for­mu­lat­ing poli­cies to address those impacts.

Browse Alumni :

Main Menu

Energy & Resources Group
310 Barrows Hall
University of California
Berkeley, CA 94720-3050
Phone: (510) 642-1640
Fax: (510) 642-1085