Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment

Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment


Research Area block

More than one billion people lack safe drinking water, and freshwater is being depleted rapidly.

The Stanford Woods Institute is finding practical ways to meet growing demand for freshwater, both in developed and developing nations, including the use of recycled water and water resources. Stanford researchers are also looking at ways to protect groundwater, restore degraded waterways, improve water-use efficiency and reduce the impact of agriculture and other land uses on water systems.

Research Centers and Programs

Global Freshwater Initiative »

Building on water supply research conducted in India and Mexico, Global Freshwater Initiative researchers are developing strategies to promote the long-term viability of freshwater supplies for people and ecosystems threatened by climate change, shifts in land use, increasing population and decaying infrastructure.

Water in the West »

The western United States needs water systems that are sustainable from economic, ecological, political, institutional, equitable, scientific and legal points of view. The American West is an arid region to begin with explosive growth and increased drought are creating a water crisis. Research can help solve this crisis, but research...

Water, Health & Development »

Working with partners in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean, Stanford researchers with the Program on Water, Health & Development are identifying ways to improve and increase the sustainability of water supply and sanitation service delivery, while also enhancing capacity for sustainable water and wastewater management in developing countries.

Other Research Centers and Programs

Environmental Venture Projects

Building Solar-Powered Water Treatment »

North America - 2018

Contamination of drinking water is a huge challenge with close to 2 billion people relying on contaminated water sources. Chlorination is the most common method of disinfection, but it produces carcinogenic byproducts and undesirable taste and odor.

Mapping Intersection of Water, Climate and Disease Transmission »

Africa - 2018

Understanding the relationship between water resources, climate change and mobility can help us better understand disease transmission.

View More Environmental Venture Projects For This Research Area

Realizing Environmental Innovation Program

Optimizing Groundwater Recharge »

North America - 2018

Increasing groundwater recharge is critical to our water future. Spreading basins (ponds with high percolation rates) can help, but many cities don’t consider how innovative urban water sources, such as recycled water and spreading basins can augment recharge.

View More Realizing Environmental Innovation Program Projects For This Research Area

News & Press Releases

Coachella Valley

Who Owns the Aquifer? »

August 3, 2018

Stanford researchers map out groundwater at stake in the wake of a court decision that bolsters Native American rights to the precious resource across an increasingly arid West.

By Josie Gartwhaite, School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences

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Media Coverage

Cities in the face of drought »

August 8, 2018

Newsha Ajami comments on water drought.

By Ashley Kirk, The Telegraph

View More Media Coverage


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Published Work
Water in the West »

January 1, 2014 -

Detecting Unfrozen Sediments Below Thermokarst Lakes With Surface Nuclear Magnetic Resonance »

February 16, 2013 - Rosemary Knight, Andrew D. Parsekian, Benjamin M. Jones, Lin Liu, Kristina Keating, Mike Müller-Petke, Jan O. Walbrecker, Guido Grosse

Nitrogen Removal with Energy Recovery Through N2O Decomposition »

November 6, 2012 - Craig Criddle, Yaniv D. Scherson , George F. Wells, Sung-Geun Woo, Jangho Lee, Joonhong Park, Brian J. Cantwell

Water Funds and payments for Ecosystems Services: Practice Learns from Theory and Theory can Learn from Practice »

February 28, 2012 - Gretchen Daily, Rebecca Goldman-Benner, Silvia Benitez, Timothy Boucher, Alejandro Calvache, Peter Kareiva, Timm Kroeger, Aurelio Ramon

California Water Myths »

December 9, 2009 - Barton "Buzz" Thompson, Ellen Hanak, Jay Lund, Ariel Dinar, Brian Gray, Richard Howitt, Jeffrey Mount, Peter Moyle

Feeding aquaculture in an era of finite resources »

September 8, 2009 - Rosamond Naylor, Ronald W. Hardy, Dominique P. Bureau, Alice Chiu, Matthew Elliott, Anthony P. Farrell, Ian Forster, Delbert M. Gatlin, Rebecca J. Goldburg, Katheline Hua, Peter D. Nichols

Research Brief
Workshop Report
Removal of carbon and nutrients from domestic wastewater using a low investment, integrated treatment concept »

May 21, 2010 - Sunny Aiyuka, Joyce Amoakoa, Lutgarde Raskinb, Adrianus van Haandelc

Annual Reports
Fact Sheet