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Principal Associate

Joe Donahue is an environmental policy specialist and portfolio manager with more than 15 years of experience supporting governments in developing and implementing policies and programs focused on climate change, clean energy, ozone layer protection, and solid waste management. His work spans both domestic and international programs and initiatives. Technical areas of expertise include climate change mitigation strategies; international capacity building; greenhouse gas quantification methods; short-lived climate pollutants, especially methane, black carbon, and hydrofluorocarbons; and clean energy policies.

Donahue leads Abt’s Environmental Protection Agency portfolio, including coordinating the firm’s business development, customer engagement, and project execution across EPA offices. He has served as a contributing author for Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) products, and as an expert reviewer on emissions quantification methodologies based on IPCC methods (e.g., for the GHG Protocol). He has earned certification from the Greenhouse Gas Management Institute for GHG inventory development.

Donahue’s major current projects include:

  • Leading Abt’s technical, analytical and capacity building support on the Global Methane Initiative and Climate and Clean Air Coalition Waste Initiative on behalf of EPA. This work has resulted in the development and deployment of a suite of analytical tools, dozens of studies and analyses, and a range of trainings, workshops, and study tours.
  • Leading Abt’s support of EPA’s Stratospheric Protection Division, including assisting EPA in reducing emissions of hydrofluorocarbons through technical assistance and voluntary incentives, and analyzing alternatives to ozone depleting substances.
  • Supporting EPA’s international greenhouse gas inventory system capacity building efforts, including efforts to employ more advanced IPCC methodologies.

Donahue’s significant past projects include leading Abt’s support to EPA in evaluating the environmental and economic implications of hydrofluorcarbon management strategies, including refrigerant reclamation and use of refillable cylinders.

He’s also supported the development of a series of guidance materials for EPA’s State and Local Climate and Energy Program, including guides on clean energy strategy implementation. Additionally, Donahue managed Abt’s efforts to model the impacts of black carbon on Arctic climate change, and supported EPA’s involvement in the Arctic Council Task Force on Short-lived Climate Pollutants.


  • Climate change
  • Ozone layer protection
  • Clean energy
  • Short-lived climate pollutants
  • Solid waste management
  • Greenhouse gas emissions

Key Projects:

  • Global Methane Initiative
  • Climate and Clean Air Coalition Waste Initiative
  • EPA’s GreenChill Partnership
  • EPA’s HFC Phasedown
  • EPA’s Renewable Natural Gas Initiative
  • EPA’s Coalbed Methane Outreach Program
  • EPA’s Capacity Building for Greenhouse Gas Inventory Systems
  • EPA’s Best Practices for Solid Waste Management in Developing Countries
  • EPA’s State and Local Climate and Energy Program


  • IPCC, 2014: Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability. Part A: Global and Sectoral Aspects. Contribution of Working Group II to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Field, C.B., V.R. Barros, D.J. Dokken, K.J. Mach, M.D. Mastrandrea, T.E. Bilir, M. Chatterjee, K.L. Ebi, Y.O. Estrada, R.C. Genova, B. Girma, E.S. Kissel, A.N. Levy, S. MacCracken, P.R. Mastrandrea, and L.L. White (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, 1132 pp. (Contributing author to Chapter 15 – Adaptation Planning and Implementation)
  • Smith, J.B., T. Dickinson, J.D.B. Donahue, I. Burton, E. Haites, R.J.T. Klein, and A. Patwardhan. 2013. “Development and adaptation funding: coordination and integration.” In International Climate Finance, E. Haites (ed.). Routledge, New York. pp. 54–71.
  • Smith, J.B., T. Dickinson, J.D.B. Donahue, I. Burton, E. Haites, R.J.T. Klein, and A. Patwardhan. 2011. “Development and climate change adaptation funding: Coordination and integration.” Climate Policy 11(3):987–1000. doi: 10.1080/14693062.2011.582385. Available:
Joe Donahue