Prof. Robert Howarth is an Earth systems scientist and ecosystem biologist. Some of his areas of research include the application of science to sustaining the biosphere; biogeochemistry and aquatic ecosystem science; global and regional nitrogen and phosphorus cycles; global methane cycle; environmental consequences of biofuels; the role of trace gases in global warming and climate disruption; and environmental management and the effects of pollutants on aquatic ecosystems.
Prof. Howarth was a staff scientist in Woods Hole, joined the faculty at Cornell University in 1985, and was appointed David R. Atkinson Professor of Ecology & Environmental Biology in 1993. He is the founding editor of the journal Biogeochemistry and served as editor-in-chief for more than 20 years. Since 2014, he has been editor-in-chief of the journal Limnology & Oceanography. He has published over 200 scientific papers, reports, and book chapters. His most recent book is the 4th edition of the text Essentials of Ecology (2014). In 2011, Prof. Howarth published the first comprehensive analysis of the greenhouse gas footprint of shale gas in Climatic Change Letters and an invited commentary on shale gas in Nature. This work was cited in over 1,500 newspapers globally, and gained him an honorable mention as one of “50 People who Matter” in the annual Time 2011 Person of the Year issue.
Prof. Howarth holds a BA from Amherst College and a Ph.D. jointly from MIT and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.