Esther Parish

Esther S Parish

Geographer & Landscape Ecologist

Dr. Esther S. Parish has been a researcher with ORNL's Environmental Sciences Division for ~15 years. Dr. Parish leads interdisciplinary research projects for the US Department of Energy's BioEnergy Technologies Office (BETO) and Water Power Technologies Office (WPTO). As a geographer and landscape ecologist, Esther's primary research interests include utilizing geographic information science (GIS) and integrated models and datasets to assess (1) potential tradeoffs between environmental and socioeconomic indicators of sustainability and (2) climate change impacts on human populations and water resources. With a Ph.D. in Energy Science & Engineering through the Bredesen Center for Interdisciplinary Graduate Research and Education, an M.S. in Geography from The University of Tennessee, and B.S. in Geology & Geophysics from Yale University, Esther has expertise in landscape ecology, sustainability indicators of renewable energy resources, watershed hydrology, and pollution prevention. Dr. Parish has published nearly 40 articles in a variety of peer reviewed journals, including Applied EnergyPNAS, Ecology & SocietyEcological Indicators, Environmental Management, Computers & Geosciences, and Sustainability.

Stanley I. Auerbach Award for Distinguished Achievement presented to Esther Parish by the ORNL Environmental Sciences Division “For creative scientific analyses and spatially explicit tools to help renewable energy stakeholders and the nation meet sustainability goals” (October 2022)

Clean Energy Education & Empowerment (C3E) Finalist in the category of “Social, Economic, & Policy Innovation” (August 2021)

UT-Battelle 2017 Award for "Science Communicator" (October 2017)

Best Poster Award, Smoky Mountains Computational Sciences & Engineering Conference for “Science-Practice Collaboration to Increase Urban Resilience to Climate Change” (September 2016)

Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference (ISERC) Best Track Paper for Modeling and Simulation: “A Decision Analysis Tool for Climate Impacts, Adaptations, and Vulnerabilities” (May 2016)

CODiE Award for “Best Science or Health Curriculum” from the Software and Information Industry Association for the JASON curriculum, “Operation: Tectonic Fury” (May 2011)

ORNL Significant Event Award for Novel Computational Analysis (October 2010)

ORNL Significant Event Award for Climate War Gaming Support (March 2009)

My Community, Our Earth (MyCOE) Top Ten Project, as selected by UNEP, World Bank, National Geographic Society and Association of American Geographers (September 2002)