Environment

Climate Changing the West Antarctic Food Web

The western Antarctic Peninsula is experiencing rapid climate change evidenced by warmer air temperatures, increased westerlies, glacial and ice shelf retreat, reduced sea ice cover and delayed time of sea ice formation.  The west Antarctic Peninsula food web shows influences of this rapid climate change: reduction in phytoplankton biomass, abundance of Antarctic krill and Adélie penguins have all been associated with changed environmental

Mapping Fungal Biogeography

Understanding fungal biogeography, the distribution of fungi, bacteria, and viruses, is key to understanding how ecosystems function. A thorough understanding of the ecological linkages between communities, their environment, and ecosystem function requires analysis across multiple spatial or temporal scales. In a recent study, Talbot et al. (2014) explored the taxonomic and functional distributions of fungi at the continental scale, with findings that…

Lifestyles of the High and Low GHG Emitters

Where should you live to most reduce your carbon footprint? It seems obvious that city life with smaller homes, mass transportation, and easy access to shops and restaurants is preferable to the suburbs with its cars and bigger homes. But how about the benefits of rural areas where people grow their food and live closer to the land? What about regional climate, income and energy price differences? A recent analysis by Jones and Kammen (2013)…

Aerosol Sulfates. A Free Geoengineered Lunch?

In 1896 Svante Arrhenius published On the Influence of Carbonic Acid in the Air upon the Temperature of the Ground which laid out the foundation of how carbon dioxide affects global climate.  His suggestion that global coal production (then 500 million tons per year) could be so disruptive has been verified, hastened by soaring fossil fuel consumption, including a 17-fold increase in coal…

Cold-adapted Species May Be Winners Under Climate Change

As the climate warms, all species will either need to find new habitats with similar temperatures to those they currently occupy or evolve new thermal tolerances. Recent research by Araujo and colleagues suggests that some species may be able to adapt to new, higher temperatures better than others. Specifically, the authors analyzed the heat and cold tolerance capabilities of 2740 terrestrial

Dendrochronology's "Divergence Problem" Explained?

A new study by Alexander Stine and Peter Huybers offers strong evidence that reduced light availability (“global dimming”) explains the apparent lack of tree-ring evidence in many Arctic regions for the recent warming observed in instrumental records there. Dendroclimatology uses measurements of the yearly growth width and density of tree rings to reconstruct changes in past climate. The …

Belowground biotic interactions and how they respond to, and influence climate change via climate-ecosystem carbon feedbacks.

My research interests include soil, ecosystem and climate change ecology. Specifically, my work focuses on biotic interactions and how they respond to, and influence climate change via climate-ecosystem carbon feedbacks. My PhD work, conducted at Cardiff University, centered on the topic of soil biodiversity. This work advanced our theoretical and mechanistic understanding of how top-down processes control soil biodiversity and nutrient cycling.

For Ecologists, Is Climate Change Research Sufficiently Complex?

Climate change will alter myriad natural processes as precipitation patterns shift and oceanic and atmospheric temperatures and CO2 concentrations rise. Modern ecology and environmental science has already examined the potential effects of climate change on species and ecosystems, allowing us to elucidate the mechanisms and pathways through which it may operate (Tylianakis et al. 2008)…

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