research

Piecing together a picture of climate regulation on Earth

Climate stability on Earth emanates directly from the global cycling of key elements and nutrients, as driven by an ensemble of biogeochemical processes. Our goal is to identify and develop a better understanding of the major processes that give rise to prominent feedbacks within the global climate system, and its evolution over time. We approach this with a geochemical toolbox that includes the use of traditional and non-traditional isotope proxies, a suite of modelling techniques. Time scales of interest are broad, ranging from the modern to the Precambrian, and include the study of a variety of features such as mass extinction events, icehouse-greenhouse transitions, and more protracted evolutionary shifts associated with biological innovations.

Large-scale carbon capture and sequestration

It is time for us to re-imagine the way we live life on this planet. The global drive to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 has massive inertia that calls for the immediate deployment of large-scale carbon capture programmes. Here, we look to test the efficacy of enhancing the natural process of silicate weathering—enhanced rock weathering—Earth’s oldest capture method, for effective direct and diffused air capture of carbon dioxide. We investigate this with field trials, geospatial and geochemical modelling that adopt both reaction transport and machine learning techniques.


Trialing enhanced rock weathering on Ngapeke Farm (Ngāti Pūkenga), Bay of Plenty, NZ

Tipping points in Earth’s biosphere

How does Earth’s biosphere and carbon cycle respond to rapidly changing temperatures? We are working to constrain the temperature response of whole microbial communities in both marine sediments and terrestrial soils through field and laboratory work. Our work assesses the impact of this microbial response on both organic and inorganic cycling of carbon on the global scale.




Collaborating Institutions

| Yale | Texas A&M | Penn State | UC Davis | Cambridge | Columbia | Nanjing |
| Hamburg | GNS Science | Ngāti Pūkenga | University of Tokyo |
| Georgia Tech | Stanford |

Funding

| Marsden | NZARI | Ballance Agri-Nutrients |