Wednesday, 13 September 2017
Wednesday, 30 August 2017
An uncertain future? Major agricultural changes required to mitigate phosphorus losses under climate change
Phosphorus losses from land to water will be impacted by climate change and land management for food production, with detrimental impacts on aquatic ecosystems. Here we use a unique combination of methods to evaluate the impact of projected climate change on future phosphorus transfers, and to assess what scale of agricultural change would be needed to mitigate these transfers. We combine novel high-frequency phosphorus flux data from three representative catchments across the UK, a new high-spatial resolution climate model, uncertainty estimates from an ensemble of future climate simulations, two phosphorus transfer models of contrasting complexity and a simplified representation of the potential intensification of agriculture based on expert elicitation from land managers. We show that the effect of climate change on average winter phosphorus loads (predicted increase up to 30% by 2050s) will be limited only by large-scale agricultural changes (e.g., 20–80% reduction in phosphorus inputs).
National BBC Radio 4 attention on Farming Today as well as other channels.
This work reflects the importance of the long term data from the National Defra Demonstration Test Catchments and the NERC NUTCAT projects, all coming together. The more you think about thsi work and its implications, the more serious are the implications. This is just the beginning......
Wednesday, 9 August 2017
Tuesday, 8 August 2017
Danilo Almeida had spent the last 12 months working with the team in the lab on organic phosphorus mobilisation in soils. Danilo is completing his PhD on the effect of tropical grasses on soil phosphorus availability to soybean, in collaboration with São Paulo State University, Brazil. It's been a pleasure to work with you Danilo. Dan left me a bottle of Cachaca - so it looks like a summer of Caipirinha cocktails!
Monday, 3 July 2017
Last week I said goodbye to one of the best Post Doctoral Scientists I have had working with the team, as 'Herr Dr' Daniel Blackburn moved on to start a 'grown up' academic career in the University of Oman (graduating from our mutual joke 'Herr Doctor' to 'Herr Professor'!). Daniel has been a very active and hard working soil biogeochemist who originates from Brazil but joined the team from a job in Germany. He has helped develop new insight into phosphorus and particularly organic phosphorus forms in soil and its mobility. We have also had a lot of fun together working and travelling the world including visits to Panama, Montpellier, Germany and Austria. It was fun Daniel - thank you. Here are some photos we took last week at the farewell pub lunch trip, as well as some in December 2015 in Germany. Before he moves to Oman, Daniel will spend the summer working in collaboration with my team and Roland Bol in Germany, with whom he is pictured in 2015 here. Keep in touch fine fellow - the collaboration continues......
Friday, 30 June 2017
Today we say goodbye to Jinchuan Ma who worked with me and Ben Surridge at Lancaster University for the last 6 months. Jinchuan was visiting from the Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Beijing China, and has been studying a phosphorus mass balance at the regional scale in China, as part of his PhD.
Thursday, 29 June 2017
Today I am with Jess Davies and colleagues from Lancaster University visiting The University of Lausanne. Jess gave a terrific vision for the business case for soil pointing out the underlying value and contribution of soil to the world economy, providing a basis for food production, clean water etc.. Whilst I cannot argue with this as an academic, I wonder how successful we really are at communicating this at 'grass roots' level. I still think there is a lot of work to do selling the case for #soil. Meanwhile, good job Jess....