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Cambridge Global Food Security

An Interdisciplinary Research Centre at the University of Cambridge

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Professor Bill Adams

Dr Jean Adams

Dr David Aldridge

Dr Lara Allen

Professor Julian Allwood

Dr Birdem Amoutzopoulos

Dr Foivos Anastasiadis

Professor Andrew Balmford

Dr Shima Barakat

Dr Tina Barsby

Harriet Bartlett

Professor Sir David Baulcombe

Dr Paulo Bombelli

Laura Bouvet

Dr Luke Braidwood

Ana Bravo


Dr Alexandra Brintrup

Bill Brogan

BBSRC Research Development Fellow C.E. Bryant , Prof.

Professor Clare Bryant

Nicola Buckley

Dr John Carr

Dr Matt Castle

Dr Josephine Chambers


Kher Xing (Cindy) Chan

Professor Pietro Cicuta

José Ciro Martínez

Dr Yolande Cordeaux

Dr Polly Courtice

Dr Andrew Craig


Dr Gemma Cranston

Dr Otti A. Croze

Dr Nik Cunniffe

Dr Helen Curry

Sarah Dalzell

Dr Ciara Dangerfield

Dr Romola Davenport

Dr Matthew Davey

Anna Davies

Dr Jane Davies


Dr Julia Davies


Professor Cristiane Derani

Dr Robert Doubleday

Professor Paul Dupree

Dr Pauline Essah

Professor Steve Evans

Dr Nuno Faria

Dr Mariana Fazenda

Dr Shailaja Fennell

Dr Richard Fenner

Francisco Oliveira Filho

Dr Tom Finch


Ms Franziska Fischer

Dr Louise Foley

Helen Francis

Jacqueline Garget

Sarah Garland


Emma Garnett


Lauranne Gateau

Dr Ksenia Gerasimova

Arsalan Ghani

Professor Chris Gilligan

Professor Beverley Glover

Dr Sabrina Gonzalez-Jorge


Dr Rie Goto

Dr Andrew Grant

Professor Howard Griffiths

Dr Theo Hacking

Alison Harvey

Dr Ian Henderson


Dr Mercedes Hernandez-Gomez

Professor Julian Hibberd

Professor Ian Hodge

Dr Gareth Hollands

Dr Mark Holmes

Carol Nkechi Ibe

Dr Fumiya Iida

Hanadi Jabado


Dr Laura James

Katy Jeary

Dr Lili Jia

Dr Wei Jiang


Dr Alexander Jones

Professor Martin Jones

Sacha Khoury


Water resources are becoming increasingly scarce as a result of increasing human demand and climate change. Monitoring forest water use is important in order to devise good management strategies that will optimize water use and minimize water loss by evapotranspiration. Woodlands are key players in their local ecosystem and at the global scale, as they are affected by climate change but also impact it by balancing global carbon stocks. Within the Mediterranean basin, significant land abandonment in the northern (European) regions in recent decades has resulted in an accumulation of biomass at a regional scale, while the southern (African) and eastern regions (Middle East) still suffer from deforestation because of different management practices. Even though the spontaneous regeneration of woodland is leading to sequestration of more carbon and protection of soils, it may also lead to higher transpiration rates and interception of a greater proportion of precipitation before it reaches reservoirs, posing questions about water security. Alto-Tajo, for example, has immense cultural value.; it is famous for its canyons and gorges formed by the Tagus river, its tributaries bordered by dryland farming in the moors, and fields of sunflowers and willow. These ecosystems could be affected by woodland densification. In fact, the accumulation of biomass in this region leads to an increase in competition between species for water resources and increase the overall evapotranspiration, and the management strategies of these woodlands could severally impact water availability under future climatic conditions. My study is aimed at estimating canopy water content at different spatial scales, to improve understanding of the monitoring strategies available to optimize water use by these ecosystems. Remote sensing technologies have been developed over the years to monitor changes on multiple scales; they are ever more relevant today in ecology and conservation because of the pressing challenges of climate change and resources scarcity. From global, low-resolution sensing to local, high-resolution sensing, scientists are attempting to answer important ecological question with increasing confidence and accuracy to assist policy makers and practitioners in managing efficiently the world’s resources. In my study will be collecting the spectral signatures of tree leaves at a number of sites across Alto Tajo, to assess water content and compare it with vegetation indices calculated from high-resolution multispectral satellite imagery (Landsat and sentinel 2) and the hyperspectral sensor AisaFENIX. This will indicate how well we can monitor forest water use using satellite imagery in face of future climatic changes and droughts. A validated remote sensing method would provide a valuable alternative to expensive, intensive ground based measurements. This work will be carried out within sites established by the FUNDIVeurope project, and plots established by Professor Fernando Valladares as part of the ERA-LEARN 2020 SPONFOREST project.

Professor Yasemin Kor

Dr Mukesh Kumar


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