A group of people stand in front of a sky background

 Mary Gehring (center left in green jacket, beside John Kerry) joins MIT leaders and representatives of the five Climate Grand Challenges flagship project teams.


Gretchen Ertl/Whitehead Institute

Gehring discusses new climate change project

Whitehead Institute Member Mary Gehring was a featured presenter at a recent symposium sponsored by the MIT Climate Grand Challenges initiative. The event was highlighted by a climate policy conversation with Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry and presentations about the initiative’s five flagship projects. Gehring, who is leading a study on how to make food crop plants more robust in the face of climate change, discussed the flagship project for which she is a key investigator, Revolutionizing Agriculture with Low-emissions, Resilient Crops. The project’s dual goals are reducing greenhouse gas emissions produced by agricultural fertilizer and ensuring that yields of agricultural crops do not continue to decrease due to climate change’s effects on plant growth. Speaking on behalf of the project team, Gehring observed, “We can’t be content with the current state of research or solutions for climate change and agriculture. We have to continue to innovate and rapidly deploy solutions, and most importantly, we must inspire young scientists here at MIT and around the world to pursue research in this area.” Visit this link to learn more about Gehring’s work to create climate-change resilient food crop plants – and to read about Institute Member Jing-Ke Weng’s parallel work to bioengineer cereal crops that, essentially, create their own fertilizer through a symbiotic relationship with nitrogen-fixing microbes.



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