Many of the projects undertaken by members of Environmental Processes research group are focussed on Upland Environments.
Several aspects of these environments are studied by the group, including their geomorphology, hydrology, vegetation composition, ecosystem services and pollutant and nutrient cycling. There is a particular emphasis on the response of these sensitive areas to environmental changes and human impacts, with a focus on restoration and regeneration.
Although not limited to this area, a focus for upland work has been the peatlands of the Pennines particularly the Bleaklow and Kinder Scout plateaux in the south Pennines, with a major body of work focussing on the group’s experimental catchment in Upper North Grain.
The group employs a range of methodologies, including long-term field monitoring campaigns and the development of new monitoring methodologies, sophisticated laboratory-based analytical techniques, computer-based numerical modelling, and cutting-edge remote sensing technologies.
Who we are
Clive Agnew (Group: EPRG)
Clive is an applied climatologist and hydro-meteorologist working on problems of environmental degradation and environmental status assessment. Clive is currently engaged in studies of wetland hydrology in the UK with an emphasis up boundary layer fluxes and assessing the spatial variability of climate change predictions.
Tim Allott (Group: EPRG)
Tim is a physical geographer with expertise in environmental hydrology, palaeolimnology, aquatic and wetland environments. His research focuses on anthropogenic impacts on upland landscapes and the management and restoration of degraded freshwater and peatland landscapes.
Gareth Clay (Group: EPRG)
Gareth has research interests in how land management in the UK affects the carbon dynamics of upland peats. In particular he looks at the role of fire (prescribed burning and wildfires) in the formation of charcoal, as well as the impact of fire on water quality (specifically dissolved organic carbon, DOC). He was a co-author on the IUCN UK Peatland Programme Technical Review on the impacts of prescribed burning on peatlands.
Martin Evans (Group: EPRG)
Martin works on the erosion and restoration of upland blanket peatlands and on understanding the impacts of erosion and restoration on ecosystems services from these systems. Martin is also interested in the hydrology of upland landscapes, with ongoing work focussed on landscape scale monitoring and modelling of peatland water tables.
Claire Goulsbra (Group: EPRG)
Claire’s key research interests centre on the degraded peatland systems of the south pennies, in particular the hydrological processes and pathways operating in these systems. Claire also researches into the fate of eroded organic matter, linking to carbon cycling and greenhouse gas budgets.
Angela Harris (Group: EPRG)
Angela's research interests focus on the innovative application of remote sensing for monitoring the impact of environmental change on peatland vegetation communities and ecosystem physical processes.
Julia McMorrow (Group: EPRG)
Julia’s field is terrestrial remote sensing, specialising in the impacts of wildfire on peatland environments and subsequent restoration. Julia currently works on the spatial and temporal analysis of wildfire risk and carries out action research on wildfire knowledge exchange in the UK.
Gail Millin-Chalabi (Group: EPRG)
Gail’s research interests focus on the innovative application of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) for burn scar detection and persistence in moorland environments. Wildfire sites from the Peak District National Park have been identified to assess SAR intensity and coherence response taking into consideration key environmental variables such as precipitation, land cover and slope.
James Rothwell (Group: EPRG)
James’ research is centred upon investigating the processes that control the enrichment and cycling of pollutants in catchment systems. He uses a variety of analytical approaches including coupled chromatography - mass spectrometry, synchrotron radiation techniques, and modelling to understand the dynamics of metal(oid)s in peatland systems.
Emma Shuttleworth (Group: EPRG)
Emma is a peatland geomorphologist and hydrologist. Her work focuses on peatland erosion and restoration, and how these affect sediment dynamics, carbon and pollutant storage, and runoff generation.
Current research projects
- Restoration of moorland catchments managed by prescribed burning (with Moors for the Future). Gareth Clay
- The impacts of moorland wildfires on ecosystem services. Gareth Clay
- Controls on particulate organic matter processing. Claire Goulsbra, Martin Evans, Tim Allott.
- Eco-hydrological modelling of northern peatlands. Angela Harris
- High resolution mapping of peatland patterns and processes. Angela Harris
- Arsenic bio-methylation and detoxification in boreal peatlands. PI James Rothwell and Christian Mikutta (ETH Zurich)
- Investigating the controls on the fluvial export of sediment associated lead and particulate carbon from eroding peatlands. Emma Shuttleworth, Martin Evans, James Rothwell
- Making Space for Water: the restoration of bare eroded peat on runoff. (DEFRA) Tim Allott, Martin Evans, Emma Shuttleworth
- Knowledge for Wildfire: improving management of UK wildfire through knowledge exchange: Julia McMorrow
- Dissolved organic nitrogen and carbon dynamics in upland catchments of the southern Pennines, UK. James Rothwell, Martin Evans and PI Donald Edopka