MSc thesis: Representing alpine ecosystems in the Norwegian Earth System Model
EMERALD is an interdisciplinary and nationally coordinated research project which aims to improve the representation of high latitude and alpine ecosystems, along with their climate interactions, in the Norwegian Earth System Model (NorESM). Here, we look to integrate empirical data from the projects already underway at UiB (for example SEEDCLIM, FunCAB, INCLINE) along with broader data synthesis ideas to improve our understanding and modelling of vegetation feedback processes.
We have a couple of options available this year, see below.
The third opportunity we have is examining how spectral imagery can be used to provide non-destructive insights into plant responses along environmental gradients. The reflectance properties of vegetation, the percentage of light reflected throughout the electromagnetic spectrum, can also provide insights into a broad range of vegetation characteristics, including: plant structural and chemical traits, plant functional types, and identifying invasive species to name just a few. As reflectance measures are able to be taken at the leaf, individual, plot, landscape and global level, and there is increased interest towards linking these responses in order to better understand patterns of plant performance, and to utilize them in large scale global models, especially as these approaches are often more time-efficient and less destructive than traditional harvest-based methods. With the wide range of experiments underway in the Between the Fjords research group, there are opportunities to looks at leaf and canopy level reflectance (NDVI) across experimental systems including; drought in coastal heathlands, responses along elevation gradients, or how alpine species respond to experimental warming. There are also databased opportunities, integrating existing data from within the Between the Fjords projects, or conducting meta-analysis or systematic reviews.