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Holohan photoAidan Holohan M.Sc.

As a PhD student at UCD under the newly formed earth institute, Aidan is working as part of a multi institutional and interdisciplinary team within the climate adaptation, mitigation and geo-hazards cluster. As a colabaritive project between UCD, TCD and the University of Giessen, Aidan’s research work is focused on improving our understanding of the impacts of future climate change, a significant challenge of global change biology and one which is at the forefront of national and international climate research.   

Based principally at UCD, Aidan will examine the effects of elevated concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide on plants grown within diverse, species rich communities in order to understand how species will respond to ever increasing quantities of atmospheric CO2. As such this project will not only examine the development of plant responses to climate change, but also how or if these adaptations translate into ecological success under ‘real world’ conditions. In order to achieve this Aidan will utilize the high diversity, undisturbed, long‐term free air carbon dioxide enrichment experiment (FACE) at the university Giessen in conjunction with UCD’s program for experimental atmospheres and climate (PÉAC), two globally unique research facilities.

Consequences of this work will not only deliver an improved prediction in terms of the ecological responses of native European grassland species to future climate change, It will also address one of the key limitations of climate envelope models (which aim to project species’ geographical range expansion/contraction under future climate change scenarios) providing for a broadening of our knowledge and allowing for the development of sustainable solutions to future rises in global atmospheric CO2.



UCD Plant Palaeoecology and Palaeobiology Group Updated: July 2013
Professor J.C. McElwain