University of Cambridge > > Cambridge Earth Observation Centre Seminar > Wakehurst Ecosystem Observatory: monitoring long term biodiversity trends with Kew’s Nature Unlocked programme

Wakehurst Ecosystem Observatory: monitoring long term biodiversity trends with Kew’s Nature Unlocked programme

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Yi Zhang.

The UK’s biodiversity provides multiple ecosystem co-benefits, however major gaps remain in our knowledge. Nature Unlocked: Landscape Ecology Programme was established to utilise the Wakehurst’s diverse landscapes (Kew’s Wild Botanic Garden) for long-term research to determine how different habitats support specific ecosystem services. Initiated in 2021, the research programme has so far collected high resolution baseline data across Wakehurst for above, below and in flux carbon; mycorrhizal links with carbon storage; pollinator monitoring focused on understudied floral availability of trees; and understanding how nature connectedness can improve mental and physical wellbeing, access, and diversity. Moving forward, we plan to establish the Wakehurst Ecosystem Observatory, a network of permanent plots across the Wakehurst landscape where key environmental metrics are recorded. Coupling these baseline measurements with interdisciplinary data, we aim to inform and influence land management policies and key practices. In turn, this offers UK government bodies, businesses, communities, and landowners’ effective evidence-based solutions to enhance biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Phil is Research Leader of the Nature Unlocked: Landscape Ecology Programme at RBG Kew and is based at Wakehurst. Phil’s interests are in the use of remote sensing, in particular LiDAR, to characterise forest structure, from individual branches and trees to continental scales. Most recently, he has developed techniques to efficiently capture and process plot scale terrestrial LiDAR data outputs which have been used in cal/val of satellite based aboveground biomass missions. Phil’s other interests include characterising the configuration and value of urban forests as well as modelling remote sensing signals with radiative transfer models.

This talk is part of the Cambridge Earth Observation Centre Seminar series.

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