Researchers at many U.S. universities are participating in curricula that now stress hard science
What distinguishes most of these new programs from academia's previous environmental offerings is a high level of interdisciplinary study and a clear focus on hard science.
Over the last two years, Harvard and Yale universities and even Rockefeller University, which heretofore focused almost exclusively on basic research in the life sciences, have all set up formal environment programs that cut across traditional academic department boundaries.
At Yale, for instance, a two-year-old undergraduate program-- entitled Earth, Environment, and Resources--is offered through the department of geology and geophysics.
Additionally, Yale's Institute for Biospheric Studies, funded with a $20 million gift from Texas billionaire and businessman Edward Bass--who also funded...