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Bullard Spotlight: Pamela Templer and Winter Climate Change

February 10, 2014
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Pamela Templer

This year, a new highlight series will showcase research by Harvard Forest's Charles Bullard Fellows, who come to the Forest for up to a year to contribute, either as scholars or administrators, to forestry defined in its broadest sense as the human use and study of forested environments.

This month, we're highlighting Pamela Templer, who is spending 2013-2014 jointly as a Bullard Fellow here at the Forest, and as a Sustainability Science Fellow at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. Templer is an Associate Professor in the Department of Biology at Boston University. During her Bullard Fellowship, she's examining the effects of winter climate on forest productivity, water, and air quality.

Earlier research from Templer's lab shows that a changing winter climate can have big impacts on forest ecosystems. A smaller winter snowpack can decrease water and nitrogen uptake by some tree species, and also reduce the abundance and diversity of soil arthropods that are important to ecosystem function.

Her research incorporates long-term ecological research (LTER) datasets from the Harvard Forest and the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Field measurements and LANDSAT satellite images augment data from these and other forests throughout the Northeast. 

For Templer, a valuable aspect of the Bullard Fellowship is collaboration. She notes, "Conducting this work through the Bullard Fellowship program enables me to expand and strengthen collaborations at Harvard Forest and Harvard University. Through Harvard's Sustainability Science program, I am continuing my efforts to integrate science with policy through the Science Policy Exchange and to communicate results of my research to the public. I feel fortunate to do this work at Harvard Forest and Harvard University because of the broad, interdisciplinary knowledge people have in these communities." 

  • Watch BU Today's feature on Templer's research:

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