Professor and Director
MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative
John E. Fernández '85 is the Director of the Environmental Solutions Initiative and a professor in the Department of Architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Fernandez has initiated work at MIT and with colleagues across the globe on some of the most important environmental challenges today, including climate change, biodiversity loss, plastic pollution and other synthetic compounds, critical minerals for a low carbon future, cities and climate change, and climate justice. Fernández founded and directs the MIT Urban Metabolism Group, which is focused on sustainable and biodiverse futures for cities around the world. He is a published author in scientific and design journals and two books and speaks to a wide range of issues in climate change and the environment. He is particularly concerned about biodiversity loss and considers our relation to other non-human species as our defining legacy on Earth. Fernández serves on the World Economic Forum Global Commission on BiodiverCities by 2030, the leadership of OceanVisions, and the US Advisory Panel of EarthPercent. He is also a practicing architect with a portfolio of completed low energy and net zero carbon buildings in the US and abroad.