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As a non-profit, we rely on your support to continue our legacy of environmental research. With a gift to DRI, you’ll provide the resources our scientists need to better understand and address the problems posed by our changing planet. Give today to support DRI scientists as they develop scientific knowledge and work to solve our most pressing environmental challenges.

Nevada Science, Global SolutionsNevada Science, Global Solutions
For nearly 60 years, the Desert Research Institute (DRI) has excelled in scientific research and the application of technologies to improve lives throughout Nevada and the world. With campuses in Reno and Las Vegas, DRI serves as the non-profit research arm of the Nevada System of Higher Education.
Since 1959, DRI's research has advanced scientific knowledge, supported Nevada's diversifying economy, provided science-based educational opportunities, and informed policy makers, business leaders, and community members. Committed to scientific excellence and integrity, DRI faculty, students, and staff develop scientific knowledge and innovative technologies, improving lives within Nevada and around the globe.


The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is a recognized world leader in investigating the effects of natural and human-induced environmental change and advancing technologies aimed at assessing a changing planet. For more than 60 years DRI research faculty, students, and staff have applied scientific understanding to support the effective management of natural resources while meeting Nevada's needs for economic diversification and science-based educational opportunities.
Click below to explore some of DRI's research capabilities and global impact

atmospheric sciences
image of researcher studying soil
hydrologic sciences
climate data & services
fire sciences
water sustainability
data analytics cybersecurity
public health and the environment
advanced autonomous research

DRI News and Announcements

Mon, 30 Sep 2019

DRI Launches Two New Projects to Study Hydrology at The Nature Conservancy’s 7J Ranch…

Scientists will investigate water quality and flow in critical desert wetland habitat LAS VEGAS,NEV. (Sept. 30, 2019) —The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is pleased to announce the... Read more

Mon, 16 Sep 2019

Emissions from cannabis growing facilities may impact indoor and regional air quality, new research shows

RENO, Nev. (Sept. 16, 2019) - The same chemicals responsible for the pungent smell of a cannabis plant may also contribute to air pollution on a... Read more

Thu, 05 Sep 2019

NSHE Board of Regents Appoint Interim President of DRI

Dr. Kumud Acharya, an ecological engineer and long-time Desert Research Institute faculty member, was given a two-year contract. Media Contact: Francis McCabe, (702) 290-8971, fmccabe@nshe.nevada.edu CARSON CITY... Read more

Wed, 03 Jul 2019

Lead pollution in Arctic ice shows economic impact of wars, plagues, famines from Middle Ages…

RENO, Nev. (July 8, 2019) – How did events like the Black Death plague impact the economy of Medieval Europe? Particles of lead trapped deep... Read more

Mon, 24 Jun 2019

Alison Murray selected to co-lead NASA’s Network for Ocean Worlds

New initiative will guide search for life in ice-covered water worlds beyond Earth (Reno, Nevada – June 24, 2019) – Desert Research Institute microbial oceanographer and... Read more

Sat, 22 Jun 2019

DRI President Kristen Averyt Resigns, Dr. Kumud Acharya Named Officer in Charge

Dr. Kristen Averyt announced her resignation for personal reasons on Monday. The search for a new president of the Desert Research Institute will begin with... Read more

Tue, 04 Jun 2019

Researchers identify connection between more frequent, intense heat events and deaths in Las Vegas

Las Vegas, Nev. (June 4, 2019) - Over the last several decades, extreme heat events around the world—particularly in the North American Southwest—have gotten hotter... Read more

Fri, 31 May 2019

Statement on the passing of Robert and Robin Holman

On behalf of the faculty and staff of the Desert Research Institute and the Board of Trustees of the DRI Foundation, we were deeply saddened... Read more

Mon, 20 May 2019

Free citizen-science app lets users assist in research, report findings, and help Keep Tahoe Blue

South Lake Tahoe, CA (May 20, 2019) - With apps like iNaturalist and Instagram hashtags like #trashtag trending, there are increasingly more ways for budding... Read more

Thu, 09 May 2019

Population health study "Healthy Nevada Project" goes statewide, adding 25,000 participants

The study could expand to a quarter million people, making Nevada the only state in the U.S. to offer such a program Las Vegas, Nev. (May... Read more

Wed, 08 May 2019

Traces of Roman-era pollution stored in the ice of Mont Blanc

RENO, Nev. (May 8, 2019) – Last spring, an international team of researchers led by Joe McConnell, PhD, Director of the Ultra Trace Ice Core... Read more

Tue, 07 May 2019

North Atlantic Ocean productivity has dropped 10 percent during Industrial era

RENO, Nev. (May 7, 2019) - This week, new research outlining the steady decline of phytoplankton productivity in the North Atlantic since the Industrial Revolution... Read more

Thu, 02 May 2019

Forest fires accelerating snowmelt across western U.S., new study finds

RENO, Nev. (May 2, 2019) - Forest fires are causing snow to melt earlier in the season, a trend occurring across the western U.S. that... Read more

Wed, 01 May 2019

Upcoming Festival to Highlight Science and Technology in Local Schools

RENO, Nev. (May 1, 2019) – From May 13th to 17th, the Desert Research Institute (DRI) and the Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum (The... Read more

Wed, 24 Apr 2019

DRI and The Discovery Launch First-Ever Northern Nevada Science & Technology Festival

Week-long celebration of science set for May 13-17th RENO, Nev. (April 24, 2019) – From May 13th to 17th, the Desert Research Institute (DRI) and the... Read more

Tue, 23 Apr 2019

MWA Welcomes Desert Research Institute as Newest MWA Member

Washington, DC (April 23, 2019) – The Millennium Water Alliance is pleased to announce that the Desert Research Institute, part of the Nevada System of... Read more

Tue, 16 Apr 2019

Nevada Higher Education Institutions Partner with Tesla in New Robotics Academy For Teachers

Program to offer K-12 teacher trainings developed by DRI, UNR and UNLV Reno, Nev. (April 16, 2019) -  The Desert Research Institute (DRI), University of Nevada... Read more

Mon, 08 Apr 2019

DRI researchers successfully remove harmful hormones from Las Vegas wastewater using green algae

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (April 8, 2019) – A common species of freshwater green algae is capable of removing certain endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) from wastewater, according... Read more

Wed, 27 Mar 2019

U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto to join Desert Research Institute at "Science Behind Smarter Communities"…

April 25th event in Las Vegas to celebrate Institute's 60th AnniversaryLas Vegas, NV (March 27, 2019): The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is proud to announce that... Read more

Wed, 20 Mar 2019

Floating evaporation stations deployed at Lake Powell

RENO, Nev. (March 20, 2019) - In the western United States, reservoirs are critical for storing water that can later be used by cities and... Read more

Fri, 01 Mar 2019

Monica Arienzo receives Board of Regents 2019 Rising Researcher Award

Reno, Nev. (March 1, 2019): This week, the Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents awarded Monica Arienzo, Ph.D. of the Desert Research... Read more

Tue, 26 Feb 2019

Dandini Research Park Board reappoints two Trustees and names new and continuing officers

RENO, Nev. (February 26, 2019) - The Dandini Research Park, governed by DRI Research Parks, Ltd, a 501(c)3 corporation organized by the Nevada System of Higher... Read more

Tue, 26 Feb 2019

DRI Research Foundation names new chair, officers and fellows

RENO, Nev. (Feb. 26, 2019) – The Board of Trustees of the Desert Research Institute (DRI) Research Foundation are pleased to announce the unanimous approval of... Read more

Thu, 21 Feb 2019

DRI scientist honored with California's premier air quality award

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (February 21, 2019) – The California Air Resources Board today honored recipients of the 2018 Haagen-Smit Clean Air Awards, California’s premier award recognizing individuals who... Read more

Wed, 20 Feb 2019

Study provides new insight into how microbes process nitrogen

Reno, Nev. (February 20, 2019): Microbes play a key role in Earth’s nitrogen cycle, helping to transform nitrogen gas from the atmosphere back and forth... Read more

Tue, 22 Jan 2019

New research shows impact of using shared language and building public trust in weather forecasts

Reno, Nev. (Tuesday, January 22nd) – For meteorologists, effectively communicating weather forecasts and their related dangers is essential in maintaining the health, safety, and resilience... Read more

Tue, 22 Jan 2019

Research team develops first lidar-based method for measuring snowpack in mountain forests

Reno, Nev. (Jan. 22, 2018): Many Western communities rely on snow from mountain forests as a source of drinking water – but for scientists and... Read more

Thu, 03 Jan 2019

New study identifies atmospheric conditions that precede wildfires in the Southwest

Reno, Nev. (January 3, 2018): To protect communities in arid landscapes from devastating wildfires, preparation is key. New research from the Desert Research Institute (DRI)... Read more

Mon, 03 Dec 2018

Data from DRI ice core lab shows rapid melting of Greenland ice sheet

Reno, Nev. (Dec. 5, 2018): The melting of the Greenland ice sheet has increased rapidly in response to Arctic warming, and is likely to continue to do so into the future, according to... Read more

Tue, 27 Nov 2018

DRI ice core data illustrates climate “teleconnection” between Earth’s poles during climate changes in the…

Reno, Nev. (Nov. 28, 2018): This week, new research on historical climate changes in the Earth’s polar regions by an international team of scientists was... Read more

Fri, 16 Nov 2018

Southwest Climate Adaptation Science Center Receives $4.5M for Continued Research 

Collaborative climate research center has received renewed funding from USGS to continue climate studies and outreach throughout the U.S. Southwest.  November 15, 2018 (Reno, NV) -... Read more

Thu, 15 Nov 2018

In Memoriam – Dr. John Hallett

Please join us for the Celebration of Life for Dr. John Hallett on Monday, December 17th from 3pm-5pm in the DRI Stout Conference Center, located at... Read more

Tue, 13 Nov 2018

First non-polar historical iodine record shows impact of fossil fuel emissions

Reno, Nev. (Nov. 13, 2018): A new ice core record from the French Alps shows impacts of fossil fuel emissions in the form of a... Read more

Thu, 01 Nov 2018

DRI and Collaborators Awarded $6 Million Grant for Innovative Genetic Research

Project to create jobs and develop new technologies in Nevada, Maine, New Hampshire Las Vegas, NV (November 1, 2018):  The Desert Research Institute, in partnership with... Read more

Thu, 18 Oct 2018

DRI Welcomes Sheldon Flom as New Vice President for Finance and Business

Reno, NV: The Desert Research Institute proudly announced today that Sheldon Flom, CPA has been named the Institute’s new Vice President for Finance and Business.     Flom has... Read more

Thu, 18 Oct 2018

DRI Welcomes Tracy Bower as New Director of External Affairs

Las Vegas, NV:  The Desert Research Institute proudly announced today that Tracy Bower has been named the Institute’s new Director of External Affairs. Bower will lead DRI’s... Read more

Mon, 24 Sep 2018

Renown Health Appoints DRI's Joseph Grzymski, Ph.D., as Chief Scientific Officer

RENO, Nev. (Sept. 25, 2018) – Taking the next step toward expanding its landmark population health and genetics research initiative to a statewide and national level, Renown Healthtoday... Read more

Fri, 21 Sep 2018

Interdisciplinary research team to investigate impact of changing mountain snowpack on agriculture in western US

Reno, NV (Friday, September 21) - Mountain snowpack and rainfall are the primary sources of water for the arid western United States, and water allocation... Read more

Thu, 20 Sep 2018

DRI ice core data provides insight into how dust and precipitation reach Earth's poles

Reno, NV (September 20, 2018): In September, new research by a team from the University of California, Santa Barbara, the University of Washington, Columbia University... Read more

Mon, 10 Sep 2018

Updated California Climate Tracker tool provides more than 120 years of climate data

Reno, NV (Sept 10, 2018): Scientists from the Western Regional Climate Center (WRCC) at the Desert Research Institute (DRI) in Reno, NV are pleased to... Read more

Tue, 28 Aug 2018

Low-severity wildfires impact soils more than previously believed

New research shows negative effects of fire on soil structure and organic matter Las Vegas, NV (August 28, 2018): Low-severity wildland fires and prescribed burns have... Read more

Wed, 15 Aug 2018

Significant amount of cancer-causing chemicals stays in lungs during e-cigarette use, Nevada-based researchers find

Reno, NV(August 15, 2018) – E-cigarettes have become increasingly popular as a smoke-free alternative to conventional tobacco cigarettes, but the health effects of “vaping” on humans... Read more

Tue, 31 Jul 2018

Governor Sandoval, President Averyt meet with Ghanaian President Akufo-Addo during Trade Mission

ACCRA, GHANA (July 30, 2018) – Highlighted by a meeting with President Nana Akufo-Addo, the successful first leg of Governor Brian Sandoval’s trade mission to... Read more

Fri, 20 Jul 2018

Gault site research pushes back date of earliest North Americans

Luminescence dating confirms human presence in North America prior to 16 thousand years ago, earlier than previously thought July 20, 2018 (Reno, NV) - For decades, researchers believed the Western Hemisphere was settled... Read more

Thu, 19 Jul 2018

Tesla selects DRI’s Science Alive program to develop statewide teacher training infrastructure focused on robotics…

Reno, NV (July 19, 2018): The Desert Research Institute is proud to announce that the DRI Science Alive K-12 Outreach Program has been selected as one... Read more

Wed, 06 Jun 2018

DRI's Ben Hatchett wins Nature Geostory competition

Reno, NV (June 6, 2018): Benjamin Hatchett, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow with the Desert Research Institute (DRI) in Reno, has been selected as one of... Read more

Fri, 01 Jun 2018

Craig Rosen Recognized as Nevada Sustainability Leader

NV GREEN Alliance Names DRI Science Alive Administrator 2018 Environmental Hero at Awards Gala May 22, 2018 (Las Vegas, NV) - Craig Rosen, Community Relations... Read more

Wed, 09 May 2018

Lead pollution in Greenland ice shows rise and fall of ancient European civilizations

Reno, NV (May 14, 2018): To learn about the rise and fall of ancient European civilizations, researchers sometimes find clues in unlikely places: deep inside... Read more

Tue, 24 Apr 2018

Ancient ‘quids’ reveal genetic information, clues into migration patterns of early Great Basin inhabitants

Las Vegas, NV (Tuesday, April 24, 2018): If you want to know about your ancestors today, you can send a little saliva to a company where –... Read more

Tue, 24 Apr 2018

DRI launches cybersecurity internship program in collaboration with SANS Institute

Program now accepting applications for 2018 Reno, NV (Tuesday, April 24, 2018): From malware infections to attacks on critical infrastructure like electricity grids, cybercrime is a... Read more

Tue, 20 Mar 2018

New research improves prospects for imperiled Devils Hole Pupfish in captivity

DRI study finds key differences between artificial habitat and the real Devils Hole Las Vegas, NV (Tuesday, March 20, 2018): In a first-of-its kind study of... Read more

Thu, 15 Mar 2018

Healthy Nevada Project announces pilot study insights and phase two enrollment

Population Health Study Begins Clinical Care Integration and Opens Genomic Testing to 40,000 Nevadans Reno, Nev. (March 15, 2018) – Eighteen months ago, northern Nevada made... Read more

Wed, 14 Mar 2018

DRI Stories in the Snow Project collects over 400 images from local citizen scientists

Detailed photographs help local scientists understand regional storms, collect weather data Reno, NV (Wednesday, March 14, 2018): No two snow crystals are alike, an old saying... Read more

Thu, 01 Mar 2018

Board of Regents award DRI air pollution expert 2018 Rising Researcher Award

Dr. Vera Samburova Winner of 2018 Rising Researcher AwardReno, Nev.  (Thursday, March 1, 2018) - The Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents... Read more

Thu, 01 Feb 2018

Saving the Desert’s Upper Crust

NEXUS researchers investigate the preservation of a vital component of desert ecosystems To a casual observer, desert lands may appear a barren vista of sand and soil... Read more

Wed, 17 Jan 2018

Scientists investigate northern Sierra Nevada snow droughts

New research from DRI explores root causes of declining snowpack levels Reno, NV (Wednesday, January 17, 2018): The Lake Tahoe Basin and northern Sierra Nevada are currently... Read more

Tue, 09 Jan 2018

Helix to help expand Healthy Nevada Project

Community-driven population health study prepares to significantly increase public enrollment Reno, Nev. and San Carlos, Calif. (Tuesday, January 9, 2018) – Fifteen months after launching the... Read more

Fri, 05 Jan 2018

DRI names Lawrence Buja new Vice President for Research

Reno, NV (Friday, January 5, 2018): Lawrence Buja, Ph.D., has been named the new Vice President for Research (VPR) for Nevada’s Desert Research Institute. Dr. Buja... Read more

Thu, 07 Dec 2017

Climate Engine offers unprecedented access to Earth image datasets

New web application utilizes Google Earth Engine to process and visualize climate and satellite image data Reno, NV (Thursday, December 7, 2017): Working with large environmental... Read more

Fri, 17 Nov 2017

DRI and Scripps Oceanography receive $3 million NOAA grant to help decision makers prepare for…

Program to focus on climate-driven impacts to local communities Reno, NV (Friday, November 17, 2017): A climate research program led by scientists at the Desert Research... Read more

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