The Gulf Scholars Program provides students with opportunities for research, mentorship, community engagement, and leadership development with established non-profits and corporations.

Here are a few examples of the types of activities and projects our scholars are engaged with:

Bayou City Waterkeeper Partnership

This project will support work by Bayou City Waterkeeper (BCWK) to protect and restore the integrity of the lower Galveston Bay watershed through advocacy, education, and action. BCWK is a non-profit organization using science and law to work with communities affected by water pollution and flooding across greater Houston to restore our natural systems, achieve equitable policy solutions, and advance systematic change to benefit all who live within the Lower Galveston Bay watershed.

Click HERE to read more.

Galveston Bay Foundation Partnership

The Galveston Bay Foundation (GBF) is a conservation nonprofit organization working to preserve and enhance the health and safety of Galveston Bay. This project will support the GBF in collaboration with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to identify solutions to mitigate coastal flood-induced chemical spill risks along the US Gulf Coast, such as non-structural mitigation concepts similar to those proposed and

studied by the Rice University SSPEED Center to reduce hurricane and severe storm damage on the Texas Gulf Coast.

Click HERE to read more.

Nature Conservancy Partnership

Attention around nature equity, who has nature and who does not, is growing quickly. This has several causes. The first is that climate change is threatening to greatly widen (and has already done so in Houston) equity gaps and the presence or absence of high functioning natural infrastructure will help to determine who gets hit the hardest by heat, flooding, etc.. Secondly, Houston, as you know, has acute environmental justice issues around air quality, water quality, and soil quality. These challenges can be

ameliorated with the strategic use of nature – including trees, pocket prairies, and stormwater wetlands– as well as remediating soil with plants. Lastly, equitable access to nature is critical to the mental, physical, cultural, and spiritual well-being of all people. Yet, access to greenspaces is heavily inequitable– including in Houston. The latest Trust for Public Land lists Houston 70 out of the largest 100 American Cities. So, more equitable park space is critical.

Click HERE to read more.

GTI and Houston Advanced Research Center

Hydrogen, Clean Energy Transition, and Environmental NGOs

Some consider hydrogen a controversial stepping-stone while others consider it essential to reducing emissions by leveraging existing fossil fuel assets paired with carbon capture as we transition to cleaner electricity production in the coming decades1. Hydrogen offers current and real opportunities for heavy industry and transportation sectors to decarbonize at a faster rate. As with most energy technologies, the possibilities also come with challenges. Communicating information to communities and environmental non-governmental organizations (e-NGOs) is a critical next step to bringing awareness of the benefits of hydrogen for the energy transition.

Click HERE to read more.

Photos from GSP student-run panel discussion, “Smart and Equitable Cities: A Vision for Houston” featuring Dr. Erin Baumgartner from the Kinder Institute; Andy Escobar from Coalition for Environment, Equity, and Resilience; Dr. Ali Mostafavi from Texas A&M University; Priya Zachariah from the City of Houston.

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