School of Earth and Environment

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Global warming may lead to a drop in lightning strikes, affecting atmospheric composition and the frequency of natural forest fires in the tropics, a new study suggests. Using a newly-devised method, scientists including Dr...[more]

We are delighted to announce that Professor Simon Poulton has been awarded the Bigsby Medal of the Geological Society. The medal was founded by John Jeremiah Bigsby (1792 - 1881), and is awarded “as an acknowledgement of eminent...[more]

Working together to secure a sustainable future for Indonesian rainforests is one of the objectives for a new agreement between the University of Leeds and Bogor Agricultural University. The Rector of Bogor was welcomed to Leeds...[more]


Mangrove forests cover thousands of hectares of coastline in many of the world’s tropical and sub-tropical countries.  As well as supporting the livelihoods of people who live and work near the forests, the trees play a...[more]

Professor Dominick Spracklen has secured highly prestigious European Research Council funding worth £2 million euros over the next five years. [more]

Deforestation is likely to warm the climate even more than originally thought, scientists warn.[more]

Scientists have found fossil evidence of deep-sea marine life burrowing up to eight metres below the seabed — four times the previously observed depth for modern deep-sea life.[more]

The School of Earth and Environment will be strongly represented at the 2017 AGU Fall Meeting that’s in New Orleans this year (11th – 15th December). The Institute of Geophysics (IGT), Institute for Climate and Atmospherics...[more]

An international team of scientists, led by the School of Earth & Environment, has quantified the relationship between natural sources of particles in the atmosphere and climate change. [more]

Professor Lindsay Stringer receives Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit award

The School of Earth and Environment is pleased to congratulate Professor Lindsay Stringer, for receiving the Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit award for her research on improving land quality in developing countries. The...[more]

Shrinking glacier cover could lead to increased volcanic activity in Iceland, warn scientists. [more]

Can conservation agriculture help farmers in sub-Saharan Africa handle the man-made problem of climate change? Professor Andy Dougill believes it’s possible, but much more co-ordinated planning and further evidence is needed.[more]

The challenge of growing enough food to sustain an ever-expanding population has led the Chinese government to look at creative solutions to reform farming in the country.[more]

Handbook cover

Forecasting weather in the tropical climate of West Africa has long been a problem for the region’s meteorologists. Aged infrastructure, outdated forecasting methods and the sheer intensity of the region’s weather extremes make...[more]

One of the largest global mass extinctions did not fundamentally change marine ecosystems, scientists have found.[more]

An international expedition aims to better understand seismic activity through samples collected from one of the most geologically active areas in Europe. [more]

Past mass extinctions may have the potential to guide modern conservation efforts, according to a new study. [more]

Martyn Chipperfield writes for The Conversation on how the 30-year-old ozone layer treaty Montreal Protocol is so successful it is now taking on Climate Change. The 1987 treaty that stopped the pollution causing a hole in the...[more]

New research has shown that limiting the increase in global average temperatures to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels is still geophysically possible, but requires more ambitious emission reductions than those pledged so far. [more]

The mass movement of humans and animals is significantly affecting the distribution of essential microorganisms, scientists warn. [more]

The UK’s 50 largest cities could save £7 billion annually and create over 90,000 years’ worth of extra employment by adopting simple measures to cut their energy use and counter climate change.[more]

Beliefs in magical creatures can impact the protection of biodiversity, and the field of conservation needs to consider them seriously, researchers have warned.According to a new study, by academics at the University of Leeds and...[more]

Seismic surveys challenge the view that recent slowdowns in Greenland’s ice flow will continue in the long term, says a new study. [more]

The largest remaining ice shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula lost 10% of its area when an iceberg four times the size of London broke free earlier this month. Since the 12 July 2017 breakaway Dr Anna Hogg, from the Institute for...[more]

The School of Earth and Environment (SEE) is joining forces with the British Geological Survey (BGS) through a new partnership that enhances the abilities of both parties to tackle questions around critical global challenges,...[more]

Researchers from the School of Earth and Environment have played a major role in securing £16m of funding from the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).  Two major Global Challenges Research Council funded projects have...[more]

The Royal Research Ship (RRS) James Clark Ross, Credit: British Antarctic Survey

A new £10 million research programme to investigate how the Arctic Ocean is changing has launched its first cruise to the Barents Sea.  The Changing Arctic Oceans research programme aims to generate a better understanding...[more]

A new study led by researchers in the School of Earth and Environment has found a previously undetected potential health risk from the high concentration of small particles found in a boomerang-like return of a volcanic plume....[more]

New research has found that the general public is supportive of ambitious plans by the Scottish Government to restore Scotland’s peatlands - which benefits water quality, wildlife and carbon storage.[more]

View from the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) Rothera research station, on Alexander Island at the Antarctic Peninsula. Credit: A. E. Hogg/CPOM

Glacier flow at the southern Antarctic Peninsula has increased since the 1990s, but a new study has found the change to be only a third of what was recently reported.  An international team of researchers, led by the UK...[more]

Françoise GUICHARD / Laurent KERGOAT / CNRS Photo Library

Global warming is responsible for tripling the frequency of extreme West African Sahel storms over the last three decades putting numerous cities in the region at risk, say scientists.  An international team, including...[more]

The Austria Vienna Centre. (Credit: Copernicus/EGU)

Researchers representing all of our Institutes in the School of Earth and Environment will be in Vienna this week show casing their work at the European Geoscience Unions General Assembly (24th – 28th April). Representatives...[more]

Rock fragments brought to the seafloor by massive mud volcanoes have given scientists new clues about how far life may extend into the Earth’s interior. A team of scientists, including Dr Ivan Savov from the Institute for...[more]

Global warming will thaw about 20% more permafrost than previously thought, scientists have warned – potentially releasing significant amounts of greenhouse gases into the Earth’s atmosphere.  A new international research...[more]

Map of the South Island of New Zealand showing the ground deformation and location of the surface rupture from the November 2016 Kaikoura earthquake.

Scientists from the School of Earth and Environment are involved in a study showing dramatic data from the last year’s major earthquake in Kaikoura, New Zealand, that will change the way scientists think about earthquake hazards...[more]

At the end of Feb, Colin Jones (employed by Leeds, works for NCAS, but based at Met Office) presented at an event at the European Parliament. The event was about “Realizing the 2015 Paris Agreement – Pathways to and benefits of...[more]

Billions of years ago the young planet Earth was much different from the one we inhabit today, with wildly fluctuating surface temperatures and an atmosphere and oceans filled with gases toxic to life as we know it. [more]

A new study published recently in Nature Communications highlights the importance of Antarctic ice sheet advance in causing changes in the Pacific ocean during the decent into the ice ages, at the Plio-Pleistocene Transition (3.2...[more]

Haematite tubes from the NSB hydrothermal vent deposits that represent the oldest microfossils and evidence for life on Earth. The remains are at least 3,770 million years old.

Remains of microorganisms at least 3,770 million years old have been discovered -  providing direct evidence of one of the oldest life forms on Earth.  An international research team has found tiny filaments and tubes...[more]

Researchers are a step closer to understanding the relationship between the colour of soot particles and the effect of such atmospheric pollution on climate.[more]

New research based on Precambrian rocks provides insight into how life evolved alongside changes in the chemistry of Earth’s surface. [more]

A comprehensive new handbook about weather forecasting in West Africa could help safeguard lives and resources in the region. [more]

IGT scientists Dr Jon Mound and Dr Phil Livermore had the following article published in The Conversation The Earth’s magnetic field surrounds our planet like an invisible force field – protecting life from harmful solar...[more]

There is huge potential for using electric vehicles to tackle climate change, give us cleaner air and grow the green economy. The question is, when it will make sense for most of us to ditch diesel and petrol, and go electric?...[more]

NERC have announced their programme to investigate the impact of climate change and diminishing sea ice on the marine environments of the Arctic Ocean. NERC’s £10million investment has funded four projects which will begin in...[more]

Holidaymakers concerned about fresh volcanic eruptions causing flight-disrupting ash clouds across Northern Europe might be reassured by a study setting out the first reliable estimates of their frequency. While the University...[more]

A jet stream within the Earth’s molten iron core has been discovered by scientists using the latest satellite data that helps create an ‘x-ray’ view of the planet.[more]

A study co-authored by researchers from the School of Earth and Environment and National Centre for Atmospheric Science has been named amongst the top 100 publications of 2016. The original article published in Science on the...[more]

The School of Earth and Environment will be strongly represented at the 2016 AGU Fall Meeting in San Francisco this week (12th – 16th December). The Institute of Geophysics (IGT), Institute for Climate and Atmospherics Science...[more]

Clouds and trees

Two School of Earth and Environment scientists, Dominick Spracklen and Ken Carslaw, have been named in a list of the most highly cited scientists across the world. The Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researchers Award...[more]

The way in which man-made acids in the atmosphere interact with the dust that nourishes our oceans has been quantified by scientists for the first time. In the international study led by two of the School of Earth &...[more]

The Institute of Geophysics and Tectonics would like to offer congratulations to Professor Bruce Yardley who will be awarded the 2017 Collins Medal by the Mineralogical Society. The Collins Medal is named after Joseph Henry...[more]

Photo of Laura and PhD student Huw Goodall on the M6.6 earthquake rupture, taken from a helicopter surveying the rupture (courtesy of P. Galli). The rupture is a continuous offset of the hillslope that is up to 1.9 m in places.

Dr Laura Gregory of the Institute of Geophysics and Tectonics has been awarded a £65000 NERC urgency grant to study co- and post- seismic deformation resulting from the recent earthquakes in central Italy. The project team,...[more]

Image Credit: The Times Higher Education, source: Elsevier.

A Times Higher Education news story has shown that Leeds is the top UK University for the environmental impact of its research and eighth in the world, based on field weighted citation impact. Utrecht University in The...[more]

Dr Caroline Peacock

We are very pleased to announce that Dr Caroline Peacock has been awarded an ERC Consolidator Grant in order to study "The Role of Minerals in the Oceanic Carbon Cycle". The grant, which is worth approximately €2...[more]

The School Earth and Environment is very pleased to be able to congratulate Professor Paul Wignall on the announcement that he will be the recipient of the European Geosciences Union’s Jean Baptiste Lamarck Medal 2017. [more]

Two young researchers from the Sustainability Research Institute (SRI) will be presenting alongside leading international and develop[more]

ICAS scientists have been working with the CLOUD project at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva for more than a decade. In a new study published in Science, they have for the first time been able to...[more]

At a seminar in Brussels later today [Tuesday, 11 October], the role of EU policy in improving air quality will be praised, at a time when such policies face an uncertain future because of the result of Britain's European...[more]

Hosted by Dr. Yim Ling Siu, the Chinese delegation from Beijing Audit Bureau (headed by Mr. Zheng Shanmin) visited the University on 12th September. [more]