UNEP EEAP meeting in Malaga to discuss the upcoming assessment

I’m just back from 10-days in Malaga writing and the discussing the content of the upcoming assessment by the UNEP Environmental Effects Assessment Panel (EEAP) for ozone depletion and related climate change. At the end of this year, a comprehensive quadrennial assessment will be published.

UNEP Panel Presentations
Paul Barnes, Robyn Lucas, and Keith Solomon, presenting our findings in a public forum at the Rectory of Malaga University on 20th Feb 2018.

With Paul Barnes, Janet Bornman, and Sharon Robinson, we discussed the most important research published during the last 4 years on subjects including, the consequences for terrestrial ecosystems of the positive phase of the Southern Annualar Mode (SAM) over Antarctica and ozone-related climate changes over South America. We considered new research on plant response to fluctuating UV environments and improvements in our mechanistic understanding of the role of UV-photoreceptor UVR8. We highlighted interactions between UV and herbivores, pathogens, and other aspects of climate change, and considered the role of photofacillitation in UV-mediated photodegradation.

The next step in this assessment is to send out the reports for peer-review, before meeting again in September in Vermont to finalize the content, after which it is presented to the Parties of the Montreal Protocol and to the WHO and WMO and then published for the scientific community.

New PhD student Twinkle Solanki

We are very happy to announce that Twinkle Solanki has received her PhD Study Rights from the DPPS to start her doctorate studying: Upscaling the Optical Properties of leaves to model their contribution to canopy light use efficiency and carbon assimilation over vertical and horizontal profiles of spectral irradiance, under the supervisions of Matthew Robson, Jon Atherton from the Optics of Photosynthesis Group, and Anu Heikkilä from the Finnish Meteorological Institute.

Twinkle has funding from CIMO to come to Finland and already started her research taking measurements from the canopy towers at Hyytiälä Forestry Research Station of the University of Helsinki.

 

Filming for the Lammi Nature Trail

Saara Hartikainen and Matthew Robson recently headed to Lammi Biological Station to “star” in some short films explaining the educational research activities that we designed for the Lammi Research Natural Trail.

We hope to encourage the public to have a go at estimating Leaf Area Index in the young silver birch stand using the canopy scope activity, and to help in assessing leaf, flower, and fruit development in plants growing in quadrats on the forest floor.

You can watch the canopy scope video here in English and in Finnish; and the quadrat phenology video here in English and in Finnish.

The data that we collect from the public will be used to help us estimate phenological development, and will eventually be compared with data from different sites to improve our understanding of the controls on the length of the growing season and forest canopy cover.

Here are some shots from the film-makers in action!

Quadratvideo2NatureTrailMovie

Course in Radiative Transfer Modelling to better understand solar irradiance data

Titta Kotilainen has also been instrumental in setting up the possibility for DPPS students at the University of Helsinki students to participate in a course on libRadtran: a library of radiative transfer models that allows users to access irradiance data for application in their research.
This course, run in cooperation this the FMI, was given by Arve Kylling (NILU) the actual developer of libRadtran and took place on 25th-26th October 2016 in Exactum building of the Kumpula Campus, Helsinki.
The course is open to DPPS students at the University of Helsinki and partly sponsored by CanSEE and the DPPS.

Here is the schedule here.

….And Craig Brelsford has published a review of the working and guidelines for how to get started with LibRadTran in the UV4plants Bulletin.

Wild bees along a gradient of urbanization

Congratulations to Paula Salonen on completing her Master’s Degree in Plant Biology and the University of Helsinki: Wild bees along a gradient of urbanization: a study of the effects of environmental variables on bees with a comparison of two capture methods.  Supervised by Matthew Robson and Stephen Venn

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Forthcoming Book Chapters

Keep an eye out for three Chapters in Brian Jordan’s forthcoming book “UV-B Radiation and Plant Life: Molecular Biology to Ecology (CABI publishers) co-authored by CanSEE group members.

  • UV-B induced morphological changes; an enigma
    by Marcel A.K. Jansen, T. Matthew Robson, Karel Klem and Otmar Urban.
  • Plant responses to fluctuating UV environments
    by Paul W. Barnes, T. Matthew Robson, Mark A. Tobler, Isabelle N. Bottger and Stephan D. Flint.
  • Quantifying UV Radiation
    by Pedro J. Aphalo and Titta K Kotilainen

Learning Advanced Practical Ecophysiology in Portugal

David Israel and Craig Brelsford will follow the example of Saara Hartikainen two years ago, and participate in a BES Plant Environmental Physiology Group advanced practical course in techniques for plant ecophysiology near Lisbon in Portugal (12th-16th September).

After his internship with Charlie Warren in Sydney last winter, David will be looking to compare notes with some of the leading researchers in IRGA techniques for measuring the conductance of carbon dioxide and water from leaves.