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Jennifer N. Phelan

Research Environmental Scientist


PhD, Forest Ecology, University of British Columbia
BS, Environmental Science, University of British Columbia

Jennifer N. Phelan, Ph.D., is a senior environmental scientist specializing in evaluating anthropogenic stressors' impacts on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Stressors that she has assessed include atmospheric nitrogen and sulfur pollutants, climate change, altered hydrology, and land development. More recently, her work has expanded into the impacts of biofuels on the environment and the recycling of consumer and industrial plastics. Her evaluations involve modeling, ecological risk and impact assessments, and ecosystem service quantification, and she has applied these skills to support projects including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency review of the secondary National Ambient Air Quality Standards for nitrogen and sulfur oxides; development of decisions support tools for natural resources managers including U.S. National Park Service and U.S. Forest Service; and various monitoring, risk assessment, and citing programs, tools, and reports for Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi.

Before joining RTI in 2008, Dr. Phelan was a professor at North Carolina State University. She taught and led research focused on soils and nutrient and carbon cycling in natural and managed forest stands. While at RTI, Dr. Phelan has served as a U.S. EPA NOxSOx National Ambient Air Quality secondary standards review expert panel. She has also acted as the program manager of the National Atmospheric Deposition Program Critical Loads of Atmospheric Deposition science committee and represented the U.S. at the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe International Cooperative Programme on the Modelling and Mapping of Critical Loads meetings. In addition, Dr. Phelan has co-authored a book chapter and published articles in 14 peer-reviewed journals, including Ecology, Ecological Applications, Ecological Monographs, Bioscience, Oecologia, Water, Air, & Soil Pollution, Journal of American Water Resources Association, and Ocean and Coastal Management.


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