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William Moomaw

Professor Emeritus of International Environmental Policy
Program: Global Master of Arts Program (GMAP)

William Moomaw

Professor Emeritus of International Environmental Policy
Cabot 509
The Fletcher School, Tufts University
160 Packard Ave.
Headshot of Bill Moomaw
  • Ph.D., Physical Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • B.A., Williams College

William Moomaw is professor emeritus of international environmental policy at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, where he was the founding director of the Center for International Environment and Resource Policy, the Tufts Climate Initiative and co-founder of the Global Development and Environment Institute. He graduated from Williams in 1959, and is a physical chemist with a Ph.D. from MIT. He works to translate science and technology into policy terms using interdisciplinary tools.

His major publications are on climate change, energy policy, nitrogen pollution, forestry financing and management and on theoretical topics such as the Environmental Kuznets Curve. He was a coordinating lead author of the 2001 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change chapter on greenhouse gas emissions reduction, and for the special report on renewable energy due in 2010. He was a lead author of three other IPCC reports (1995, 2005 and 2007). The work of the IPCC was recognized with the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. He also was an author for the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment on nitrogen and serves on the Integrated Nitrogen Committee of the EPA Science Advisory board.

Moomaw was the first director of the Climate, Energy and Pollution program at the World Resources Institute, and directed the Center for Environmental Studies at Williams College where he held an endowed chair in chemistry. He has received Teaching Awards at both Williams and at The Fletcher School, and an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Belgrade for his work on sustainable development. As an AAAS Congressional Science Fellow, he worked on legislation that eliminated American use of CFCs in spray cans to protect the ozone layer, and also worked on energy and forestry legislation.

Dr. Moomaw currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Climate Group, Clean Air-Cool Planet (which he co-founded), Earthwatch Institute, Center for Ecological Technologies and the Consensus Building Institute. He has facilitated sessions with negotiators of international treaties. He and his wife, Margot, have just completed a highly efficient zero net energy home in Williamstown that uses no fossil fuels. It is one of a handful of such homes to be built in northern climate zones, and its performance is being monitored for performance for the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Professional Activities
  • Senior Director, Tufts Institute of the Environment
  • Co-Director, Global Development and Environment Institute
  • Co-Director, Public Disputes Program, Program on Negotiations
  • Convening Lead Author, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 2001
  • Board of Directors, Consensus Building Institute
  • Science Advisory Committee, Earthwatch
  • Lead author, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 2003
Other Affiliations
  • The Center for International Environment and Resource Policy (IERP)
  • The Global Development and Environmental Institute (GDAE)
  • Tufts Institute of the Environment (TIE)
  • Institute for Human Security
Research Interests
  • Quantitative indicators of environment and development
  • Sustainable development
  • Trade and environment
  • Technology and policy implications for climate change
  • Water and climate change
  • Biodiversity
  • Negotiation strategies for environmental agreements


Moomaw, William and Judy Layzer. "Changing Course Will Require Major Policy Change, and the United States Must Lead the Way." Boston Review 32, no. 1 (2007).

Moomaw, William. "Environmental Sustainability and Collaboration in South Eastern Europe." Southeast European and Black Sea Studies 6, no. 3 (2006).

"Aligning Values for Effective Sustainability Planning," Planning for Higher Education (2003).

Moomaw, William. "Aligning Values for Effective Sustainability Planning." Planning for Higher Education 31, no. 3 (2003): 159-164.

"Energy, Industry and Nitrogen: Strategies for Decreasing Reactive Nitrogen Emissions," Ambio (2002).

"Renewable Energy in a Carbon Limited World," Advances in Solar Energy (1999).

"The Environment and Economic Transition in the Region," Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (1999).

"Are Environmental Kuznets Curves Misleading Us? The Case of CO2 Emissions," Environment and Development Economics (1998).

"Life-cycle Global Warming Impact of CFCs and CFC-Substitutes for Refrigeration," Journal of Industrial Ecology (1997).

"Adverse Implications of the Montreal Protocol Grace Period for Developing Countries," Journal of International Environmental Affairs (1997).

"Going Around the GATT: Private Green Trade Regimes," Praxis Journal of Development Studies (1997).

"Industry," Climate Change 1995, Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (1996).

"Industry, Energy and Transportation: Impacts and Adaptation," Climate Change 1995, Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (1996).


Transboundary Environmental Negotiation (co-editor) (2002).

People and Their Planet: Searching for Balance (co-editor) (1999).


"Expanding the Concept of Environmental Management Systems to Meet Multiple Goals," Regulating From the Inside (2001).

Courses taught