U.S. Department of Energy Office of Biological and Environmental Research

Searchable Research Highlights

Office of Biological and Environmental Research (BER)
of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)
Office of Science

BER science is vital to the nation's energy security and environmental future. Its mission is to understand complex biological, climatic, and environmental systems across time and space at scales ranging from nanoseconds to millennia, from submicron to global, and from individual molecules to ecosystems. BER science programs explore the frontiers of genome-enabled biology; discover the physical, chemical and biological drivers of climate change; and seek the biological, geochemical, and hydrological determinants of environmental sustainability and stewardship.

For more than 50 years, BER has advanced world-class biological and environmental research programs and scientific user facilities to support DOE environment, energy, and basic research missions. BER's foundational science is underpinning the development of cellulosic biofuels as major secure national energy resources. Other BER priorities include understanding relationships between climate change and Earth's ecosystems, assessing options for carbon biosequestration, predicting the fate and transport of contaminants in subsurface environments, and developing new tools to explore the interface of biological and physical sciences.

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BER supports basic research and scientific user facilities to advance DOE missions in energy and environment. More about BER

Recent Highlights

Apr 07, 2017
Tracking Genome Expansion in Giant Viruses
Piecemeal acquisition of genes from hosts may explain the rise of giant viruses. [more...]

Mar 17, 2017
Grasses: The Secrets Behind Their Stomatal Success
Finding a grass gene impacting stomatal morphology underscores the importance of developing a mut [more...]

Mar 15, 2017
Phosphate Stress and Immunity Systems in Plants are Orchestrated by the Root Microbial Community
Better understanding of these plant-microbe interactions could lead to improved bioenerg [more...]

Mar 09, 2017
Soils Could Release Much More Carbon Than Expected as Climate Warms
Findings from a whole-soil warming experiment show that deeper soil layers are more sensitive to [more...]

Feb 28, 2017
A New Fine-Root Database Addresses Belowground Challenges in Plant Ecology
The global Fine-Root Ecology Database will improve understanding of belowground plant ecology an [more...]