European project to support rooftop greenhouses projects

The Institute of Environmental Science and Technology from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB) is launching an open call to support rooftop greenhouse projects, in the framework of GROOF Project.

El ICTA-UAB participa en el proyecto que habilitará 10 escuelas de Barcelona como refugios climáticos

El Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnología Ambientales de la Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB) es una de las instituciones impulsoras de un proyecto que habilitará 10 escuelas de Barcelona como refugios climáticos para disminuir el impacto de las altas temperaturas del verano.

A warmer ocean will lead to 17% reduction in global marine animal biomass, by the end of the century

Climate change will affect the distribution and abundance of marine life, but the full extent of these changes under future warming has been difficult to predict due to the limitations of individual ecosystem models used for such forecasts.

New study dismisses green growth policies as a route out of ecological emergency

Researchers from ICTA-UAB and the Goldsmiths University of London suggest that emissions reduction is only compatible with a lower economical degrowth or a degrowth scenario.

New cross-boundary approach for addressing wicked weed problems

Weed species continue to spread and management costs continue to mount, in spite of best management practices and efforts by research and extension personnel who promote them to land managers.

Urban green spaces do not benefit the health of all

In general, the creation of parks and green spaces in urban centers has positive effects on the health of city residents.

ERASMUS+ Edu-BioMed News: ICTA-UAB organizes workshops in Jabal Moussa and Shouf Biosphere Reserves (Lebanon) addressed to university...

From next April, 29th to May, 2nd, about 40 professors and professionals from the higher education institutions from Lebanon, Morocco, Spain, France and Italy will meet in two Lebanese Biosphere Reserves (Jabal Moussa and Shouf) to discuss how to improve Moroccan and Lebanese higher education and academic research in the context of Mediterranean Biosphere Reserves (BRs).

ICTA-UAB researcher Antoni Rosell-Melé receives an ERC Advanced Grant

ICTA-UAB researcher Antoni Rosell-Melé has been awarded an Advanced Grant (AdvGr) from the European Research Council (ERC) to develop the project "New geochemical approach to reconstruct tropical palaeo-atmospheric dynamics" (PALADYN).

Urban Agriculture on Rooftops Provides Healthy, Fresh and Sustainable Food

​The implementation of urban gardens on building rooftops could produce fresh, healthy and sustainable agricultural food and guarantee the food sovereignty of cities, which are becoming increasingly populated.

Se prevén niveles de polen muy altos para esta primavera

Las polinizaciones de esta primavera y verano comenzarán en el momento habitual pero serán muy importantes.

Indigenous knowledge, key to a successful ecosystem restoration

Ecological restoration projects actively involving indigenous peoples and local communities are more successful. This is the result of a study carried out by the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB).

Future changes in human well-being more likely to depend on Social Factors than Economic Factors

The changes in the perception of personal well-being that could take place in the next three decades, on a global level, depend much more on social factors than on economic ones.

Record-wet and record-dry months increased in regions worldwide: climate change drives rainfall extremes

More and more rainfall extremes are observed in regions around the globe – triggering both wet and dry records, according a new study involving ICTA-UAB researcher Finn Mempel.

Success at ICTA-UAB: Six ERC Grants In Three Years

The Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB) has been awarded six European Research Council (ERC) grants in three years, from the end of 2015 to the end of 2018. Each project (of between 1.5 and 2 million euros) lasts for five years and allows the recruitment of a team of six or seven doctoral students and postdocs.

New ICTA-UAB 'Welcome Guide'

The new ICTA-UAB 'Welcome Guide' it is at your disposal now. With this document, we aim to help you discover the basics of the PhD programme, ICTA-UAB’s structure, etc.
MdM SEMINAR SERIES: “Understanding past, present and future carbon uptake by terrestrial ecosystems: a multidisciplinary challenge” by Prof. Iain Colin Prentice FRS

Date: 2019-01-16


Title: “Understanding past, present and future carbon uptake by terrestrial ecosystems: a multidisciplinary challenge”


Speaker: Prof. Iain Colin Prentice FRS, AXA Chair of Biosphere and Climate Impacts, Imperial College London

Date: Wednesday, January 16th 2019
Time: 12h
Venue: room Z/022- Z/023

Terrestrial ecosystems are performing a valuable service by taking up, in the decadal average, more than a quarter of the total anthropogenic emissions of carbon dioxide. Yet the mechanisms involved are still disputed, and numerical models continue to give widely deviating projections of the future of this global uptake. Moreover, despite sustained efforts, these models are not improving (in terms of their agreement with present and historical observations), and their projections of the future are not converging. I will argue that this situation reflects (a) a tradition in biology to focus on the diversity (rather than the unity) of life, which hinders the search for unifying principles; (b) an undue focus on future projection (rather than explanation) as the principal goal of models; and (c) a distortion of research priorities and culture that unconsciously reflects the politicization of climate and carbon cycle science. I will further argue, however, that scientists have a responsibility to be aware of both disciplinary limitations and political pressures, and to consciously resist them. On the other hand, the international “spotlight” on climate and the carbon cycle has permitted huge advances in the availability of relevant data, at scales from individual plant leaves to satellite observations of the whole Earth, and these advances provide immense opportunities: both for improved scientific understanding of the carbon cycle, and for the development of better-founded predictive models. I will show how recent theoretical advances based on eco-evolutionary optimality concepts have led to general, testable hypotheses concerning the most fundamental processes underlying ecosystem function – forming the basis for an emerging new generation of models, resting on firmer theoretical and empirical foundations than those they will eventually replace.

Professor Iain Colin Prentice FRS holds the AXA Chair in Biosphere and Climate Impacts in the Department of Life Sciences, Imperial College London, and an Honorary Professorship in Ecology and Evolution at Macquarie University in Sydney. He has a PhD in Botany from Cambridge University and has held academic and research leadership positions in several countries, including the Chair of Plant Ecology at Lund University, and a founding Directorship of the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry in Jena. He led the research programme Quantifying and Understanding the Earth System for the UK Natural Environment Research Council. He developed the standard model for pollen source area, popularized now widely used techniques to analyse species composition along environmental gradients, and led the international development of succcessive generations of large-scale ecosystem models – from equilibrium biogeography (BIOME) to coupled biogeochemistry and vegetation dynamics (LPJ). He was a founding member and, later, co-chair of the Internal Geosphere-Biosphere programme task force on Global Analysis, Integration and Modelling; and co-chair of its successor project Analysis, Integration and Modelling of the Earth System. He was co-ordinating lead author for “The carbon cycle and atmospheric carbon dioxide” in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Third Assessment Report, and a reviewer in subsequent reports. He is currently Director of the Masters programme in Ecosystems and Environmental Change at Imperial College. His research, now supported by the European Research Council advanced grant Re-Inventing Ecosystem and Land-surface Models (REALM), applies eco-evolutionary optimality concepts to develop and test new quantitative theory for plant and ecosystem function and land-atmosphere exchanges of energy, water and carbon dioxide with the goal of more robust global modelling of terrestrial Earth system processes.

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