Leeds Ecosystem, Atmosphere & Forest (LEAF) Centre

Leeds Forest Observatory

LEAF researchers from across the University are working with Leeds City Council to establish a Forest Observatory here in Leeds.

The Leeds Forest Observatory (LFO) will allow students and staff from the University to contribute to the collection of long-term environmental measurements and study the role of forests in the provision of ecosystem services.

The LFO will be located in Middleton Park, South Leeds, home to the largest remaining area of ancient woodland in West Yorkshire. A specific 1 hectare patch of forest will be chosen for the LFO, allowing students and staff to return to the same area year on year to build up a picture of the environmental conditions, and any changes to them.

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The LFO will contribute to the delivery of research-led teaching by providing outstanding opportunities for students from the University to become more deeply involved in scientific work and facilitating high-quality training in monitoring, analysing and reporting environmental data. There will also be an opportunity for volunteer students to assist in running the LFO, providing a unique student experience delivering a distinctive graduate skill set valued by prospective employees.

More widely, the LFO will help address key questions in environmental research, enhancing our understanding of the role of forests in mitigating climate change, improving air quality and maintaining biodiversity.

Keep up to date with the latest developments from the LFO here.