Environmental Ecology Research Group

 

Environmental Ecology Research Group is active at the Department of Environmental and Biological Sciences in Kuopio Campus of the University of Eastern Finland. The research group has three main areas of research; environmental ecophysiology, chemical ecology and environmental entomology. Group members are teaching in the courses of ecology, ecophysiology, soil ecology, applied entomology, plant biology and design of environmental and ecological experiments in study program of Environmental Science and in the International Master's Programme Biology of Environmental Change (BEC).

Environmental ecophysiology research has focus on the climate change effects on northern plants and ecosystems. During recent years we have studied the effects of increasing ozone (O3), carbon dioxide (CO2) UV-B radiation and temperature on the performance of boreal tree species and peatland ecosystems in changing climate. Another directions of the study  are the potential of trees in air quality management as well as ecological impact assessment of environmental change .

Chemical ecology research has focus on plant-herbivore interactions particularly under climate change and other environmental stresses. We also investigate factors affecting herbivore resistance of plants and how volatile organic compounds emitted by plants behave in the atmosphere together with oxidative air pollutants. Final goal of the research is to understand how ecosystem is responding and adapting to environmental change and how the biogenic feedback systems work between ecosystem and climate.

Applied ecosystem ecology has focus on studying multi-trophic interactions which are involved with ecosystem service processes (e.g. biocontrol, biological treatment of materials, pollination). In addition, we also study the transfer and effects of pollutants and other contaminants in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.