Since she was 8 years old, Elizabeth Duffy’s been riding a bicycle built for two—herself and the environment. Having traveled all over Europe on bike trips from second grade through high school in Jackson, New Hampshire, she has seen firsthand the power of low-impact transportation. Now, Elizbeth is merging her two-wheeling ways with UVM undergraduate environmental coursework to become a Graduate Research Assistant for the Transportation Research Center at UVM. Her work on greenhouse gas emissions from long-distance travel, conducted with Dr. Lisa Aultman Hall, has earned her a Thomas Votta Scholarship, among other rewards and insights.
“The most surprising thing I have learned about transportation and the environment is how little we know of our impact,” she says. “There are high-levels of uncertainty in findings due to the many factors involved with estimating transportation emissions. I look forward to the changes we will make in our transportation system that will allow our use of travel modes too differ and our estimation of emissions to have more certainty.”
Elizabeth hopes to become a professional engineer focusing on sustainability and addressing climate change. She spent 10 years designing arrangments in a flower shop, and her favorite flower is the peony.