Understanding and Managing Environmental Change
We investigate the Earth’s environmental systems, their interconnected processes, past histories and possible futures.
Our fundamental research on freshwater environments, their limnology, ecology and geomorphology is world-leading and emphasises the interactions between biotic and abiotic components for local and global processes, including carbon cycling. We use field monitoring, laboratory experiments and numerical modelling to work on these and other aspects of environmental processes and change, including generation of global dust, Arctic sediment yield, and long-term landscape erosion.
Weddell Sea Expedition
Published in a recent Science article, Jeff Evans involvement in the Weddell Sea Expedition is helping reveal how past Antarctic ice shelf retreat was an order of magnitude faster than today with major implications for rapid sea level rise under current global warming.
Retracing the first human steps out of Saudi Arabia
Published in Science Advances, Dave Ryves’ diatom analysis contributed to new research which has provided the earliest securely dated palaeoecological evidence for Homosapiens in Arabia. Fossilised footprints found in the Nefud Desert – a 25,000 sq mile (100,000 km2) region of the larger Arabian Desert, in Saudi Arabia – show how a group stopped at an ancient lake to drink and forage more than 120,000 years ago.
Anthropogenic alteration of nutrient supply increases the global freshwater carbon sink
Wolfson Research Merit Award holder John Anderson’s work on global biogeochemical cycles has produced global assessments of carbon sequestration in aquatic systems showing that lake carbon burial offsets 20% of global freshwater CO2 emissions.
£1.1M UKRI Future Leader Fellowship: “Stuck in the Mud”
Working alongside the Environment Agency, Scottish Environmental Protection Agency and the River Restoration Centre Kate Mathers’ 5-year project, “Stuck in the mud: addressing the fine sediment conundrum with multiscale and interdisciplinary approaches to support global freshwater biodiversity” is contributing state-of-the-art insights that will allow stakeholders to effectively use resources, monitor and manage UK riverine ecosystems to produce optimal conservation and restoration plans.