Research in the Waring Lab
All research in the Waring Lab is aimed at improving our understanding of the terrestrial carbon cycle and its feedbacks to global change. Under this umbrella, our work is concentrated in three major areas.
Carbon sequestration in forests
Funding: The Carbon Community
Nearly half of the organic carbon on land is held in forests, which are also important reservoirs of terrestrial biodiversity. How can we best protect, manage, and plant forests to enhance carbon capture from the atmosphere?
Controls on carbon stabilization in soils
Funding: U.S. Department of Energy
Soils contain more carbon than all terrestrial plants and the atmosphere combined. Some of this carbon can be retained belowground for centuries. We investigate controls on the formation of persistent, long-lived soil carbon, most recently using an innovative 'artificial soil' approach in the lab. We also explore how the composition of decomposer microbial communities affects carbon exchange between soils and the atmosphere.
Impacts of nitrogen deposition on the terrestrial carbon cycle
Funding: U.S. National Science Foundation
Humans have doubled the amount of reactive nitrogen in the biosphere. We study the effects of nitrogen on carbon sequestration in plants and soils across a variety of ecosystems, from the tundra to the tropics.
Right: fertilizing forest plots in Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Open data policy: Whenever possible, the Waring lab ensures that our raw data is freely and publicly available. Links to Dryad data repositories (https://datadryad.org) are provided alongside the relevant publications.
Waring BG, Powers JS. 2016. Unravelling the mechanisms underlying pulse dynamics of soil respiration in tropical dry forests. Environmental Research Letters 11(10): 105005 (https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.2hd320d)
†Student mentee co-author