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EPA Energy Systems Modeling Internship

*Applications may be reviewed on a rolling-basis and this posting could close before the deadline. Click here for information about the selection process.

EPA Office/Lab and Location: A research opportunity is available at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Research and Development (ORD), Center for Environmental Measurement and Modeling (CEMM), Atmospheric and Environmental Systems Modeling Division (AESMD) located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. Scientists in the CEMM AESMD develop and apply large scale comprehensive atmospheric systems to study various aspects of air pollution.

ORD/CEMM/AESMD helps provide the basis for the formulation of EPA’s environmental policies and programs by playing a vital role in the scientific research mission of the Agency. CEMM/AESMD helps develop and evaluate solutions to environmental problems faced by EPA, local and state agencies, and the public, and seeks to provide information and tools that enable the Agency to develop the cost effective and sustainable approaches to protecting human health and the environment. CEMM/AESMD supports EPA’s environmental protection goals by providing direct support to Agency’s regulatory and voluntary programs.

Research Project: This research project will examine the energy system changes and environmental consequences of various potential pathways into the future. The research participant will conduct research as part of a team of scientists and engineers, analyzing advanced energy systems technologies within the EPA/TIMES modeling structure of the U.S. energy system. The research participant may develop novel modeling approaches for electric, building, industrial, and transportation sectors within the U.S economy to capture a broad range of direct and indirect environmental impacts from changes in the way end-use services are delivered. The research participant may utilize an energy system model investigating the linkages between energy, climate, air quality, and water use and working to identify strategies for effectively meeting future energy demands and emission goals. 

The research participant may participate in the following research activities:
  • Implementing and testing improved representations of end-use sectors as represented in the current EPA energy systems database, the EPAUS9rT.
  • Using the TIMES energy systems model along with the EPAUS9rT to analyze future energy technology scenarios
  • Developing and implementing the data and strategies to apply a variety of formal scenarios methods/robust decision-making methods to the EPA/TIMES modeling structure.
  • Interpreting and communicating modeling results to a wide range of audiences.

Learning Objectives: The research participant will have the opportunity to learn energy systems modeling techniques, navigation of datasets for energy technology characterizations, conducting analyses with an energy systems model, analyses of modeling results, and effective presentation of results. The research participant will be mentored in data interpretation, presentation, organization, and communication of scientific findings. Through these activities, the research participant is expected to gain a better understanding of the complexities of energy system choices and an understanding of how to analyze the environmental impacts of changes in the energy system. The research participant will have latitude in exercising independent initiative and judgment in the research commensurate with the level of training. Further, the research participant may communicate their findings both to Agency personnel and to the broader scientific community through presentations and peer-reviewed journal papers. These communications may also include presentations to non-technical audiences, including outreach and communication to community and educational groups.

Mentor(s): The mentor for this opportunity is Carol Lenox ( If you have questions about the nature of the research please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: September 2021.  All start dates are flexible and vary depending on numerous factors. Click here for detailed information about start dates.

Appointment Length: The appointment will initially be for one year and may be renewed up to three or four additional years upon EPA recommendation and subject to availability of funding.

Level of Participation: The appointment is full-time.

Participant Stipend: The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Click here for detailed information about full-time stipends.

EPA Security Clearance: Completion of a successful background investigation by the Office of
Personnel Management (OPM) is required for an applicant to be on-boarded at EPA.

ORISE Information: This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and EPA. Participants do not become employees of EPA, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.

Questions: Please see the FAQ section of our website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process please email and include the reference code for this opportunity.