A major undertaking for the next five years is the new NSF funded Research Coordination Network we're setting up. The overall focus is understanding how materials and biogeochemistry are linked between terrestrial and marine ecosystems, and how that might change in the future.
Coastal rainforests are often said to have "fuzzy" boundaries between the aquatic and terrestrial realms, especially in the perennially wet perhumid areas. This network utilizes that fuzzy boundary to closely investigate how materials are exchanged between terrestrial and aquatic systems - energy (e.g., DOC), chemistry, and bulk material. Through focused yearly meetings and tight student/postdoc interactions, we hope to build a well rounded knowledge of how the two realms are linked functionally and energetically.
The first years conference will focus on aquatic biogeochemical fluxes from land to ocean. The second takes an end-user view, focusing on marine food webs and general carbon dynamics. We then move to the land (soil and forest), focusing on carbon distribution and change at scales (spatial and temporal) identified by the first two groups as relevant and practical. In fifth year, we will work to build a complete picture of the system.
Head over to the new website for news, how to join the listserv, and ways to get involved.