Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc.

  • 2020 Stanback Fellow - Water and Climate

    Job Locations US-IL-Chicago
    Posted Date 7 days ago(12/2/2019 11:33 AM)
    Job ID
    # of Openings
    Healthy People and Thriving Communities [403000]
  • Overview

    The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is the nation's most effective environmental action organization. We use law, science and the support of 3.1 million members and online activists to protect the planet's wildlife and wild places and to ensure a safe and healthy environment for all living things. NRDC was founded in 1970 and our staff helped write some of America's bedrock environmental laws, including the Clean Water Act, and many of the implementing regulations; our water enforcement cases played a major role shaping current water policy throughout the country. Today, our staff of more than 500 lawyers, scientists, economists, policy and communications experts, and others, work out of offices in New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Bozeman, Montana, and Beijing.


    Position Summary:


    This position is only for current Duke students.

    The Water and Climate Team works on issues related to how communities and the nation prepare for the impacts of climate change, particularly sea level rise, shifting precipitation patterns, and escalating risks of flooding that can disproportionately affect low-income families and communities of color. We advocate for improvements in federal policies that will ensure that communities, states, and the federal government are safer and better prepared for extreme weather events that will become more frequent as the climate changes. We urge government agencies to consider climate change in long-term planning, standards that are established for development and land-use, and policies that relate to the management of our nation’s floodplains and coastlines.


    Fellows may do research and writing to support policy advocacy designed to improve the nation’s preparedness for climate change. The intern will work within the Water and Climate Team, but a single senior policy analyst will be responsible for coordinating assignments and ensuring the fellow receives interesting, challenging, varied work, and timely feedback. The fellow would be involved in activities such as the following (and drafting associated blog posts or memos):

    • Examining how the National Flood Insurance Program could be better deployed as a tool for enhancing the nation’s climate preparedness, particularly for low-income, frontline communities;
    • Researching the effects of flooding and sea level rise on affordable housing and low-income communities, as well as examining the socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental justice implications of NRDC’s policy proposals;
    • Researching how states and the Federal Emergency Management Agency address climate change impacts in the development of hazard mitigation plans;
    • Preparing maps to explore the effects of historic land use and development on current flood risk; and/or
    • Researching how water infrastructure can be made more resilient and sustainable in an effort to prepare for the impacts of climate change.


    • Exceptional quantitative and qualitative research skills, a high intellectual curiosity, and a willingness to learn
    • A desire to influence public policy and to help prepare the nation for the impacts of climate change
    • A deep interest in issues related to the impacts of climate change
    • Comfortable giving oral presentations and preparing written material

    Applicants should provide a resume, cover letter, writing sample, transcript and references.


    To apply, please visit Duke University's website ( and upload your resume and cover letter through their online portal.  We would like you to upload any additional papers or project work that you think would showcase your abilities. Due to the high volume of resumes, only qualified candidates will be contacted. Please no phone calls, emails, faxes or in-person resume drop-offs. Please reference where you saw this posting. NRDC is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 



    If you are having technical difficulty while applying, please reach out to iCIMS Customer Care by dialing 1-800-889-4422.


    For further information about NRDC, please visit


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