Environmental Defense Fund: US Clean Air Fellow

Apply here. (Applications due Friday, January 25, 2019)

Non-U.S. citizens are eligible to apply for this position.

Website: www.edf.org

Location: Washington, DC

Fellowship Position

Position title: US Clean Air Fellow

Department: Climate - US Clean Air

Reports to: Senior Policy Manager, Programs

Address of fellowship placement: 1875 Connecticut Ave, NW Suite 600 Washington, DC 20009

Department Description

The U.S. Clean Air team is part of EDF’s Climate program, and features a multidisciplinary staff consisting of attorneys, technical experts, and policy analysts. We seek to deploy all available tools under existing law to achieve rapid and significant reductions in a broad range of air pollutants that threaten climate and human health. We integrate legal expertise with rigorous technical and policy analysis to develop effective and legally robust policy solutions to the most important climate and air quality challenges we face, and to effectively advocate for those solutions before federal and state administrative agencies. In recent years, the U.S. Clean Air team has played an important role in securing and defending climate and clean air progress in a number of key areas, including carbon pollution standards for power plants; methane standards for oil and gas facilities both nation-wide and on federal and tribal lands; greenhouse gas emission standards for passenger vehicles and heavy-duty trucks; national ambient air quality standards for ground-level ozone; and standards for a wide range of pollutants from power plants, including mercury, other air toxins, and pollutants that contribute to ground-level ozone and harmful particulates.

Position Description: 

In response to the Trump Administration’s relentless efforts to roll back or rescind vital climate protections under the Clean Air Act, the U.S. Clean Air team is fighting back, working to defend and advance climate and air protections, including through rigorous technical and policy analysis, public education and outreach, and advocacy. 

This project is multidisciplinary in nature and will involve research and analysis on a variety of topics related to clean air, public health, climate, and energy issues at both the federal and state level. Research and technical analysis may be used to support our litigation efforts on climate and clean air standards and for public education, advocacy with decision-makers, and political outreach. In addition, the Fellow will work with other members of the Climate team to identify, implement and develop innovative strategies that could be pursued at the state-level to advance carbon pricing policies. 

Areas of likely focus include, but are not limited to: 

  • Policy and technical analysis of power sector public health regulations, 
  • State-level carbon pricing policy and analytics for key states, 
  • Coal bailout analytics, 
  • Policy and technical analytics support for near-term and long-term climate policy planning,
  • Analysis and synthesis of various emissions data.

We expect this project will include engagement with outside experts, decision makers, and stakeholders, both to ensure that our analysis is robust and well-informed and to enable broad dissemination of our findings for use in achieving our climate and air policy goals. 

National scale climate protections established under the Obama Administration for power plants, oil and gas facilities, and the transportation sector are an essential foundation for transitioning the nation towards a lower carbon economy. But, they must be just the start if we are going to avert the worst impacts of climate change. The Fellow will help the U.S. Clean Air team defend these important protections and develop a strategic, science-based and visionary roadmap for continued emissions reductions so that EDF can drive a strong vision for climate and air progress and one that can be fully deployed when the opportunity for national scale action returns. This will include technical analysis to identify major opportunity areas, the development of potential policy approaches, and the compilation of external-facing materials to help EDF make the case for climate progress. Additionally, the Fellow will help with projects to advance state-level carbon pricing as there are numerous opportunities for forward progress in the states.

The successful applicant will have the opportunity to conduct their own technical and policy research while also contributing to and helping to oversee research by leading technical experts, thus providing them with an opportunity to simultaneously build breadth and depth in their experience.

Examples of specific responsibilities, projects, tasks, and/or duties of the Fellow include:

  • Research, analysis, and development of materials such as fact sheets, blogs, and issue briefs related to power sector emissions and climate/carbon policies of power companies;
  • Research and support for state-level carbon policies under development,
  • Develop analytics/materials such as fact sheets and issue briefs on public health and policy issues related to emissions from the power, transportation, and potentially other sectors examining toxic, climate, and conventional (i.e. soot and smog) pollutants,
  • Contribute to the development of white papers, articles, and blogs,
  • Attend external meetings with allies and stakeholders working to develop and implement campaigns and other strategies to secure climate and air protections,
  • Represent EDF at federal and state public regulatory and other hearings, as needed, providing oral and written testimony,
  • Engage internal and external subject matter experts as appropriate to advance technical research and gather policy perspectives,
  • Develop presentations and other materials to communicate research findings and policy benefits to internal and external audiences.


Candidates should have coursework or prior internships in the field of environmental or energy policy. They should be able to point to technical coursework that demonstrates an ability and interest in leveraging strong analytic and quantitative skills to solve complex problems. Specific coursework on climate change or energy policy, economics, or public health policy are a plus.

Professional Development

  • The Fellow will have the opportunity to work with and learn from leading policy, technical, and legal experts from across the organization as this position will involve collaboration across a variety of teams,
  • The Fellow will also have numerous opportunities to interact with and learn from leading experts across the country through day-to-day research activities as well as through participation in local events, workshops, and training seminars. In their first year of the fellowship, the successful applicant will also have the opportunity to join other EDF staff at the annual off-site retreat,
  • The Washington, D.C. area offers numerous opportunities for learning and professional growth ranging from public congressional briefings, seminars, workshops, and trainings,
  • In addition, professional development reimbursements, up to a certain amount, are eligible for courses that directly contribute to the work of the employee.