Postdoctoral Research Fellow, UMass Clean Energy Extension (CEE)
Office: Agricultural Engineering Building Room 207
As an ecologist, the work I do is motivated by one fairly straightforward, practical question: How do we achieve the rapid build-out of renewable energy capacity on a scale necessary to combat climate change, without compromising wildlife populations and the habitats on which they depend? As a Western Mass native who grew up in a small, rural town, I’m also interested in helping local communities plan for the types of clean energy development they want to see, while preserving valued natural and agricultural resources. At UMass Clean Energy Extension (CEE) our applied research, education, and workforce development efforts are typically focused on Massachusetts – but always with an eye towards how the tools and solutions we develop can be applied more broadly in other states and regions.
Outside of work, I spend a lot of time outside, canoeing, hiking, wrangling goats, chasing chickens, working on the garden, etc. – and then, of course, doing all those other good things, spending time with friends and family, playing a little bit of music here and there.
Renewable energy development and wildlife conservation; community-level planning for clean energy and carbon neutrality
- Collaborating to develop a community-driven solar siting and financing model to allow rural municipalities to proactively plan for solar PV build-out
- Administering CEE’s Pollinator-Friendly Solar PV Certification Program
- Creating a framework to evaluate potential cumulative impacts of wind development on wildlife (through AWWI)
Ph.D. September 2018, Wildlife Biology
IGERT Fellow, Offshore Wind Energy Program
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA
M.S. August 2011, Environmental Science and Technology
University of Maryland, College Park, MD
B.A. December 2006, Biology with focus in Ecology
Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY
Dowling, Z, and DI O’Dell. 2018. Bat use of an island off the coast of Massachusetts. Northeastern Naturalist 25(3): 362-382.
Dowling, Z, P Sievert, E Baldwin, L Johnson, S von Oettingen, and J Reichard. 2017. Tracking Northern Long-Eared Bat Offshore Foraging and Migration Activity on and around Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. US Department of the Interior, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Office of Renewable Energy Programs, Sterling, Virginia. OCS Study BOEM 2017-0417. 90 pp.
Dowling, Z, P Armbruster, SL LaDeau, M DeCotiis, J Mottley, and PT Leisnham. 2013. Linking mosquito infestation to resident socioeconomic status, knowledge, and source reduction practices in suburban Washington, DC. EcoHealth 10(1): 36-47.
Dowling, Z, SL Ladeau, P Armbruster, D Biehler, and PT Leisnham. 2013. Socioeconomic status affects mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) larval habitat type availability and infestation level. Journal of Medical Entomology 50(4): 764-772.
Dowling, Z, T Hartwig, E Kiviat and F Keesing. 2010. Experimental management of nesting habitat for the Blanding’s Turtle (Emydoidea blandingii). Ecological Restoration 28(2): 154-159.