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Alumni-Faculty Forum: Greening the Future: Challenges and Opportunities for Sustainable Solutions

May 27, 2023 @ 10:30 am - 11:45 am

Greening the Future Challenges and Opportunities for Sustainable Solutions

Location: McCosh Hall, Room 50



Elie Bou-Zeid
Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Princeton University



Robert L. Jaffe ’68
Jane and Otto Morningstar Professor of Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Barry Breen ’78
Adjunct Professor, Washington College of Law, American University; Lecturer, Columbus School of Law, The Catholic University of America

Grégoire Landel ’98
CEO and Founder, CityTaps

Nicole A. Velasco ’08
Senior Account Executive, NORESCO




Elie Bou-Zeid
Elie Bou-Zeid’s research focuses on the integration of theory, numerical simulations and experimental observations to study flow and transport in the lowest layer of the atmosphere, where humans live and have a direct impact on the planet. His work extends from the fundamentals of the turbulent flow and heat transfer in that layer, to various applications including the built environment and its environmental quality, energy efficiency in buildings, urban sensor networks and their design, wind farm design and wind energy forecasting, and surface-atmosphere exchanges over fractured polar sea ice. Bou-Zeid directed the School of Engineering and Applied Science’s Metropolis Project, which advances urban technological innovations that make cities more sustainable, resilient, livable and equitable, until 2022. He is editor of the Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences and a co-author of the National Science Foundation-sponsored report on Urban Climate and Resiliency. In 2016 and 2020 he was named to the Princeton Engineering Commendation List for Outstanding Teaching. He came to Princeton in 2008.



Robert L. Jaffe ’68
Robert Jaffe is a theoretical physicist; his research has focused on the physics of elementary particles, quantum field theory and the quantum structure of the vacuum. At MIT, Jaffe served as chair of the faculty and director of the Center for Theoretical Physics. He has received numerous awards for teaching and course development. From 2008 through 2016 Jaffe was a member of and then chaired the American Physical Society’s Panel on Public Affairs (POPA). In 2011 Jaffe led a joint POPA/MRS study on Energy Critical Elements: Securing Materials for Emerging Technologies. Recently, together with Professor Washington Taylor, Jaffe developed and taught a new MIT course on the Physics of Energy. Their definitive textbook, “The Physics of Energy”, an outgrowth of the course, was published in 2018. Jaffe is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Physical Society.

Barry Breen ’78
Barry Breen, Adjunct Professor, American University law school and Catholic University law school. Barry is a Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator at the U.S. EPA. Previously, he was at the Environmental Law Institute, a trial attorney at the U.S. Department of Justice, and an Army captain after graduating from Princeton’s Army ROTC program. He was managing editor of Sustainable Environmental Law, which won the annual “Best New Book” award from the Association of American Publishers in the legal scholarly category. He wrote eight of the annual competition problems for the National Environmental Moot Court. He was named the Environment, Energy and Resources Government Attorney of the Year by the American Bar Association’s section of environment, energy and resources. Barry is not speaking for the EPA at our event.

Grégoire Landel ’98
Grégoire Landel is the founder and CEO of CityTaps, whose vision is running water in every home. This father of three is French and American and has 20 years of experience working with developing country water utilities on the water-finance nexus and to improve performance. Beyond his water sector experience (mostly in sub-Saharan Africa), he has worked in software development in Uganda and California. He holds diplomas from Princeton, Columbia, and MIT. He is a humanist and a feminist. He founded CityTaps to help free women and girls from the water-related risks and burden that prevent their access to freedom, employment, and/or school and costs over $300b per year. He likes to train for triathlons and to cook for friends.

Nicole A. Velasco ’08
Nicole Velasco serves as NORESCO’s business development lead for Hawaii, Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. On behalf of NORESCO, an energy advisor and asset developer, Velasco raises awareness about energy opportunities, supports green collar workforce development and drives impact through systems optimization for both public and private entities. Previously, Velasco served the City and County of Honolulu as the executive director for the Neighborhood Commission Office followed by service as the executive director of the Office of Economic Development. Velasco has also worked as an analyst for the Hawaii State Office of the Auditor and as a Government Affairs Advisor at Ashford & Wriston LLP.


May 27, 2023
10:30 am - 11:45 am
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McCosh 50
Princeton University
Princeton, NJ 08540 United States
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(609) 258 - 3000