Latest news about our research. Project progress and collaboration. Awards and achievements.
Dr Matt Jones’ research interests are based around reconstructing climate variability from lake sediments, particularly using physical and chemical proxies of change and understanding the controls on these proxies. Current and recent projects in association with the BGS include: stable isotope systematics of lakes through monitoring and modelling recent records of stable isotope change in lake systems climate change in the Eastern Mediterranean, in particular in Iran, Jordan and Turkey and understanding the interactions between people and their hydro-environment through the late Quaternary Holocene climate change in Mexico using high resolution records of chemical change in lake sediments. Matt undertook his MSc and PhD research in association with the stable isotope laboratory at the BGS.
Dr Suzanne McGowan works on integrating aquatic ecology and palaeolimnology with specific expertise in analysis of chlorophyll and carotenoid pigments. Her research interests include investigating how atmospheric pollutants and changes in terrestrial carbon flux influence the ecology of montane and high latitude lakes in West Greenland and the UK. She has also worked extensively on lake eutrophication, examining linkages between nutrients, hydrology and ecosystem structure in the UK, Denmark, North American Prairies and the Canadian subarctic. Current work is examining nutrient enrichment in Lake Baikal using silicon and carbon isotopes with the isotope laboratory at the BGS. She has a developing interest in mangrove palaeoecology in collaboration with the organic geochemistry laboratory at the BGS.
Dr George Swann works on reconstructing past environmental changes from marine and lake sediment cores in association with the isotope laboratory at the BGS. George has current projects in association with the BGS on developing and applying diatom isotopes in environmental reconstructions investigating Quaternary changes in meltwater influx reconstructing Pliocene palaeoceanography during the onset of major northern hemisphere glaciation and reconstructing the Quaternary/Pliocene climatic and environmental history of lacustrine systems in Siberia. George has previously held an isotope apprenticeship and NERC Fellowship at the BGS before he moved to Nottingham.
Professor Davies is an international leader in her field of clastic sedimentology, especially on the understanding of processes that controlled deposition and erosion in non-marine and shallow marine settings through deep time.
Recently her expertise has led her into a new research area, that of understanding how sedimentary processes can impact on the amount and quality of natural gas in sedimentary rocks. This area overlaps with research at the British Geological Survey and where we hope to enhance collaboration.
Professor Davies will hold this honorary position at the British Geological Survey alongside her post and ongoing research projects at the University of Leicester.
The core panel members have lead responsibility for attending moderating panel meetings to ensure consistency within and between different panel areas and funding schemes. Further information on NERCs Peer Review College and how to apply.NERC is the UK's main agency for funding and managing research, training and knowledge exchange in the environmental sciences.
The Antarctic Peninsula is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth, and annual temperatures have risen by up to 0.56°C per decade since the 1950s.
Marine and land organisms have shown changes in population and distribution over this time, suggesting that the ecology of the Antarctic Peninsula is changing as a result of the warming. However, biological observations of change are very short so to link these changes with meteorological data we need to use archives of change from plants and soils.
The study investigated past moss growth and soil microbial activity from the last 150 years in an area of the Antarctic that is currently on the southern limit of significant plant growth.
The chemical and plant changes observed show that moss growth rates and soil microbial activity has risen most dramatically since the 1960s, which is consistent with the largest temperature changes that have occurred over the last 150 years.
Future changes in plants and soils along the Antarctic Peninsula are likely to track projected temperature increases and they will cause a fundamental change to the ecology and appearance (greening) of the Antarctic Peninsula.Read more about Plants and soil microbes respond to recent warming on the Antarctic Peninsula in Current Biology (subscription required).
The expedition's aim is to core sediments from beneath the seafloor at seven different locations from the Kattegat to the area of Härnösand/Sweden. The cores, from water depths up to 450  m, will provide detailed information on environmental changes in the Baltic Sea region during the past 140 000 years.
A review article on the use of isotope geochemistry in lake sediments as a means of understanding past climates remains one of the top downloaded articles in, the environmental change journal, Quaternary Science Reviews.
The paper by Professor Melanie Leng (BGS/University of Leicester) and Professor Jim Marshall (University of Liverpool) has been consistently one of the journal's most downloaded articles since its publication in 2004.
As a reward for its popularity the journal have made the article open access until 31 October 2013. The paper has been cited over 350 times according to Google Scholar.
Leng, M J, and Marshall, J D. 2004. Palaeoclimate interpretation of stable isotope data from lake sediment archives. Quaternary Science Reviews, 23, 811-831.
See a photo of Helen on the podium (3rd from left).