Institute’s Historical Ecology Featured in the New York Times

Institute’s Historical Ecology featured in the New York Times

Robin Grossinger in the field, helping to pioneer new ways of seeing the potential in a natural landscape through a vision of its past.
Photo by Ruth Askevold

New York (January 26, 2016) – In today’s New York Times, the San Francisco Estuary Institute and its scientists from the Resilient Landscapes program inspired the newspaper’s broad readership to look back in time to see a clearer future. “In Napa Valley, Future Landscapes are Viewed in the Past” by journalist Jim Robbins describes the transformative field of historical ecology, as practiced by Robin Grossinger, Letitia Grenier, Erin Beller and colleagues of SFEI. Using their work in Napa Valley as an example, Robbins captures the vitality of rigorous, painstaking research performed by SFEI to inform pressing matters concerning ecosystem adaptation and restoration. “The institute’s historical ecology program,” writes Robbins, “has since evolved into one of the largest and most successful efforts to restore an ecosystem by gathering evidence on how it once was.”

Read more about historical ecology, SFEI’s remarkable scientists, and its important partnerships in this New York Times article.

About SFEI: The San Francisco Estuary Institute is a premier California-based aquatic science center. SFEI’s 50-plus scientists work in three programs: Resilient Landscapes, Environmental Informatics and Clean Water. Our mission is to identify and develop cost-effective, scientifically rigorous solutions to protect and restore natural resources, and to connect people and policymakers to the lands and waters we all share.

About Resilient Landscapes: Resilient lands filter and store clean water, moderate floods, cool extreme temperatures, sequester carbon, purify the air, provide places for people to recreate in nature, and support wildlife communities that are the natural heritage of California. By learning from the past, identifying best practices, advancing our understanding of landscape processes, and designing greener infrastructure, the Resilient Landscapes program seeks to make the Bay Area and California a leader in the emerging field of resilience science.

Media Requests: To interview any of the scientists featured in this article, please contact Warner Chabot at

Copyright © 2016 San Francisco Estuary Institute, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
San Francisco Estuary Institute

4911 Central Avenue

Richmond, CA 94804



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