Many MIT faculty and students involved in environmental issues hold passionate views on the environment. And some, especially faculty with policy interests, find audiences for their opinions among top governmental and corporate leaders.

But MIT is MIT,so the main focus, as always, is creative problem solving. “When you add the remarkable talents of the people doing environmental work here to our tradition of interdisciplinary cooperation, you have a formula for unique contributions to environmental progress and sustainability,” says Chancellor Lawrence Bacow, head of the MIT Council on the Environment.

Here are snapshots of work under way in three vital areas: understanding and relying on nature; safe, efficient energy production; and global climate change.