Leeds Ecosystem, Atmosphere & Forest (LEAF) Centre

Starting in 2018 – we’ll be hosting a monthly lunchtime lecture open to, and suitable for, staff and students from across the University.

We’ll be giving researchers the opportunity to present their work on trees, forests, parks and woodland to an interdisciplinary audience – please contact us if you’d like to present.

Slides from the presentations will be made available on this site after each event.

Check out the schedule below:

Date and TimeLocationSpeaker and Topic 
16/1/2018
12 - 1 pm
School of Earth & Environment (8.119)Dougie Phillips (Centre for Doctoral Training in Low Carbon Technologies)
How trees differ: fundamental characteristics of UK-grown tree species
Although the UK’s forests have historically been dominated by broadleaved species such as oak, beech and birch, they have undergone a gradual yet significant change over the last 100 years. Following an extensive post-war planting and breeding regime, large stands of coniferous forests have now become a prominent feature of the UK landscape. As the complexion of our forests change, it is important to understand how species differ. This talk will consider the UK’s current forest resource, specifically the properties of four UK-grown species; oak, birch, Scots pine and Sitka spruce. We will take a look at samples sourced from a total of 14 sites across the country, discussing how different species and different tree sections can fundamentally differ from one another. There are more to trees than meets the eye!
View presentation
13/2/2018
12 - 1 pm
Roger Stevens
(LT 9)
Cat Scott (School of Earth & Environment)
How cool are trees? The impact of forests on the climate - from local to global scales
Forests store huge quantities of carbon, influence rainfall and alter the colour (and therefore reflectivity) of the land. But, in addition to taking carbon dioxide out of the air and producing oxygen, trees emit other gases into the air that can affect the climate in complex ways. This talk will explore the latest research on the many ways that forests affect the climate. Trees also have important impacts at the local scale. We’ll hear about the benefits that trees are bringing to our campus with results from a huge survey conducted by LEAF as part of the University's Living Lab project.
View presentation
27/3/2018
12 - 1 pm
Roger Stevens
(LT 9)
Martin Sullivan (School of Geography)
Monitoring tropical forests in a changing world
Tropical forests store vast amounts of carbon. Protecting forests for their carbon is therefore an important strategy to mitigate climate change. Intact forests also continue to take in more carbon from the atmosphere than they release, but the sheer amount of carbon involved means that any changes to these processes will have important consequences for climate. This talk will explore the effect of climate change and habitat fragmentation on these processes, and will also examine whether protecting the forests which store the most carbon also protects the most biodiversity.
View presentation
17/4/2018
12 - 1 pm
Roger Stevens
(LT 9)
Jess Baker (School of Earth & Environment)
From tree rings to satellites – using different tools to study Amazon climate
Areas of remote tropical forest, such as the Amazon, pose a challenge to climate scientists, due to a scarcity of meteorological stations and long-term climate data. This can limit our ability to understand and predict how the forest will respond to ongoing climatic changes. This talk will cover some of the alternative methods that scientists use to study Amazon climate, from analyzing tree rings to investigate historical climate change over several centuries, to exploiting the abundance of satellite data to learn about spatial variability in climate in the present day.
View presentation
22/5/2018
12 - 1 pm
Worsley Building (9.57)Marta Giannichi (School of Geography)
Empirical and spatial analysis of tradable permits in private forest conservation: a case study in the Brazilian Amazon
A major challenge to reduce forest loss in the tropics is to incentivise conservation on private land in agricultural settings. Engaging private landowners in conservation schemes is particularly important along deforestation frontiers. This talk presents a case study identifying different viewpoints of sellers and buyers of an emerging forest certificate trading scheme in Brazil and quantify the compatibility of their views to examine potential barriers to trade.