Biography

Geeta Persad is a Postdoctoral Scientist working at the intersection of climate science and policy in the Carnegie Institution for Science’s Department of Global Ecology with Dr. Ken Caldeira. She uses global climate models to study the role of anthropogenic aerosol particles in regional and global climate change, in order to understand how these short-lived human emissions could influence societal decision-making. She is currently focused on analyzing the relative climate impact of aerosol emissions from different regions and sectors to help optimize climate mitigation strategies.

Geeta received her PhD in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences and a certificate in Environmental Policy from Princeton University, where she was a NSF Graduate Research Fellow and a Ford Policy Fellow. Prior to her PhD, Geeta served as a Physical Scientist in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. She is a recipient of numerous scientific awards, including consecutive Outstanding Student Paper Awards from the American Geophysical Union for her work on aerosol/climate interactions. Geeta holds a B.S. in Geophysics from Stanford University, where she received the Kennedy Prize for the top undergraduate science thesis university-wide for her work on black carbon aerosols. 

Geeta’s family hails from the tiny island nation of Trinidad and Tobago, whose economy has been both fueled and made fragile by exploitation of the country’s petrochemical resources. Her connection to that country has made her deeply aware of the tension between energy and economic needs and the climate and environmental realities associated with meeting them. Geeta has spoken on aerosols and their climate impacts in a number of international venues, including the United Nations Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil and the 4th International Training School on Atmospheric Brown Cloud in Nepal. She is active in outreach, serving as an Expert Scientist and Mentor for the California Academy of Sciences’ outreach programs and as scientific support to the Alliance for Climate Education.