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Earth Systems Science

November 4, 2019

UC Merced Professor Peggy O’Day hopes to improve water quality in the California Delta by studying local wetlands. O’Day is leading a new three-year study of Merced County wetlands that drain into the San Joaquin River and eventually the Delta. “The Delta is sort of the...
Soil biogeochemistry Professor Asmeret Asefaw Berhe has been named the Ted and Jan Falasco Chair in Earth Sciences and Geology. “The Falasco family is engaged in construction and development, so they have an intimate connection with and an...
Bacteria and starfish have more in common than people might think. A new study published today in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences shows that both single-celled (microbes) and multi-celled organisms (every other living...
Soil is one of the foundations of life on Earth and could be an important part of the solution to climate change, if only we can stop treating it like dirt. That’s the message Professor Asmeret Asefaw Berhe shared with a global audience when...
Stands of brown, dead trees throughout Sierra Nevada forests
The most extreme drought event in hundreds of years caused a catastrophic die-off of the Sierra Nevada’s mature trees in 2015-2016. A study published today in Nature Geoscience details how UC Merced Professor Roger Bales and his colleague...
pine tree seedlings in a greenhouse
Climate change is bad news for forests, and a new study by UC Merced Professor Emily Moran demonstrates one aspect of that news. Higher summer temperatures hurt tree seedlings’ growth and survival. But whether that is entirely bad depends...
A verdant forest floor
A nine-year experiment by a UC Merced Department of Life and Environmental Sciences professor and his colleagues is illuminating the importance of soil carbon in maintaining healthy and functioning ecosystems because of its influence on the microbial...
Professor Sora Kim examines a fossilized shark's tooth.
Most people wouldn’t think sharks can teach researchers about the planet’s distant past and its more immediate future. UC Merced paleoecologist Professor Sora Kim isn’t most people. There’s a connection between data in...
Vicky Espinoza presents her story at a recent symposium.
Graduate student Vicky Espinoza shared the plight of some San Joaquin Valley families with a wide audience this spring in her role as a Next Generation delegate to this year’s Chicago Council on Global Affairs Global Food Security Symposium,...
A picture of a soil chronosequence in Hawaii shows yellow sulfur-rich soil that has built up over millions of years.
A rigorous, first-of-its-kind global study provides new insights into the natural history of soil biodiversity and shows that changes in soil pH during soil development is a major driver of most of that biodiversity. Published recently in the...

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