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Erin Baker Gives Powerful TEDx Talk on Embedded Racism in Our Energy System

Erin Baker

Erin Baker

“Energy Justice: Who Gets Listened to?” was the topic of a powerful TEDxAmherst talk by Erin Baker, a professor in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department and faculty director of the Energy Transition Initiative.

Baker’s talk examined how our current energy system is structurally racist and disproportionately impacts lower income households, as well as what we can do to combat these issues.

Watch “Energy Justice: Who Gets Listened to?” now:


Baker was also recently featured in a Time Magazine story about New Bedford fishermen opposing an offshore wind energy project known as Vineyard Wind. The Time story noted that climate change has given fishing workers an impossible choice: Either fight offshore wind in spite of a dangerously changing climate or embrace an encroaching industry that’s part of the climate solution.

Read the full article in Time.

Working at the intersection of engineering and economics, Baker’s research centers on decision making under uncertainty applied to energy and the environment, with a focus on publicly funded energy technology research and development portfolios in the face of climate change and energy justice. Her work has appeared in many leading academic journals, including Science, Nature Energy, Operations Research, and Climatic Change.

TEDx programs are independent, locally sponsored events that occur around the world and are “created in the spirit of TED’s overall mission to research and discover ideas worth spreading."
Learn more about TEDxAmherst.

(October 2021)