Through this research project, I am investigating the role of energy (from an environmental physics lens) plays in addressing climate change impacts. By formulating energy justice pillars and deriving solutions from case studies that focus on sustainable energy and mitigation strategies, I will contextualize the concept of "energy" from a physics lens to help physics education recognize historic and present-day inequities in the energy industry. Energy is deeply rooted in colonialism, capitalism, and industrialization as energy systems in the United States focus on the extraction, conversion, delivery, and usage of energy (Hernandez et al. 2021). Yet this is ignored in the field of physics, therefore, this project will help shape physics education, where energy is taught as a core curricular concept.
In summary my research goals are to: (1) Explain how the scholarly concept of energy reflects culturally specific values.
(2) Analyze socio-politically relevant energy scenarios through energy justice.
(3) Learn historic and present-day inequities in the energy industry and in science participation, focusing on Indigenous communities.