Daniel Posen

Daniel Posen

Daniel Posen

Associate Professor

Associate Chair, Graduate Programs


Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering

Canada Research Chair in System-Scale Environmental Impacts of Energy and Transport Technologies

Email: daniel.posen@utoronto.ca
Office: GB334
Tel: 416-978-4571


Areas of Specialization: 

Sustainable Infrastructure



My research focuses on system-scale environmental sustainability analysis. This work draws on a range of tools from Engineering, Science, Economics, and Public Policy to provide quantitative analysis to guide environmental policy and decision making. My work is grounded in the tools of life cycle assessment (LCA) and life cycle thinking, with application to a wide range of systems including fuel and chemical production, biobased products, electric vehicles and vehicle fleets, electricity generation, and infrastructure systems.

Guidance for how best to reach me:

  • For prospective students and postdocs, please review information here.
  • For students in my class, please use course discussion board or Quercus inbox.
  • For others at U of T, please use Microsoft Teams
  • For all others, email is fine, but please note that you may need to send your message multiple times
Research Interests

Find all the up-to-date information on the
Sustainable Systems Research Group website


Selected Publications

Note: Please see updated information on the Sustainable Systems Research Group website.

Posen, I. D.; Griffin, W. M.; Matthews, H. S.; Azevedo, I. L., Changing the Renewable Fuel Standard to a Renewable Material Standard: Bioethylene Case Study. Environ Sci Technol 2015, 49, (1), 93-102. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/es503521r

Posen, I. D., Jaramillo, P., & Griffin, W. M. (2016). Uncertainty in the Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions from U.S. Production of Three Bio-based Polymer Families. Environmental Science & Technology, 50(6), 2846-2858. DOI:   http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.5b05589

Faria, F., Klima, K., Posen, I. D., & Azevedo, I. M. L. (2015). A New Approach of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Outreach in Climate Change, Energy, and Environmental Decision Making. Sustainability: The Journal of Record, 8(5), 261-271. http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/SUS.2015.29023

Selected Media

  1. "We Need More Than Just Electric Vehicles”, IEEE Spectrum Magazine, August 20, 2022. https://spectrum.ieee.org/electric-cars-2657880896
  2. “Our Annual Holiday Listener Question Show – Is Scrapping an old gasoline-powered car and replacing it with a new electric one always better for the environment?”, CBC Radio, Quirks & Quarks, January 1, 2022.
  3. “Are Electric Cars Really Better for the Environment?”, Wall Street Journal, March 2, 2021. https://www.wsj.com/graphics/are-electric-cars-really-better-for-the-environment/
  4. “Core Concept: Bioplastics offer carbon-cutting advantages but are no panacea”, PNAS, March 23, 2021.
  5. “Ninety Percent of U.S. Cars Must Be Electric by 2050 to Meet Climate Goals”, Scientific American E&E News, September 29, 2020. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/ninety-percent-of-u-s-cars-must-be-electric-by-2050-to-meet-climate-goals/
  6. “Researchers Analyze Greenhouse Gas Emissions Through the Life Cycle of Plant-Based Plastics.” Carnegie Mellon University News, June 23, 2016. http://engineering.cmu.edu/media/feature/2016/06_23_plant_based_plastics.html
  7. “A life-cycle look at plant-based plastics.” Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), March 18, 2016. http://cen.acs.org/articles/94/web/2016/03/life-cycle-look-plant-based.html
  8. “Carnegie Mellon Researchers Call for Broader U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard.” Carnegie Mellon University News, April 7, 2015. http://www.cmu.edu/news/stories/archives/2015/april/renewable-fuel-standard.html
  9. “Is it Time to Broaden the Scope of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard?” Blog post in The Energy Collective, March 23, 2015. http://theenergycollective.com/daniel-posen/2208606/it-time-broaden-scope-us-renewable-fuel-standard