The next INAR seminar will be on Thursday 24th May at 14:15 in Physicum E204. The seminar will be given by Cindy Morris and the title of the presentation is "Where bio-aerosols have impact: the challenge of unraveling feedbacks between land cover and rainfall ". The abstract is below.
Where bio-aerosols have impact: the challenge of unraveling feedbacks between land cover and rainfall
Cindy E. Morris1,2
1 INRA (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique), Avignon, France
2 Montana State University, Bozeman, USA
Rainfall patterns depend on synoptic-scale atmospheric circulation. Nevertheless, land use, and particularly the shift from forests to crops and the use of irrigation, can have marked effects on local rainfall. The influence of land use change has been attributed mostly to physical properties of the land surface, to energy balance and partitioning and to atmospheric vapor content. However, aerosols also have decisive roles in the outcome of meteorological phenomena and land use contributes importantly to the types and abundance of atmospheric aerosols. Importantly, land use patterns and seasons influence the types and abundance of biological aerosols. Among the biological aerosols emitted from plants are the highly ice nucleation active bacteria and fungi that can be transported up into clouds. While it is well documented and intuitively obvious that weather affects these micro-organisms on plants, the idea of a reciprocal influence – of plant microflora influencing weather – seemed farfetched until recently as the influence of biological aerosols on cloud processes has become a hot topic of research. Nevertheless, as the atmosphere is never free of these aerosols, their effect cannot be separated from synoptic scale processes under real conditions. In light of this coupling and of the variability of aerosols across space and time, it is easy to understand why the decisiveness of aerosols in the processes leading to rainfall is under debate. Here I will present ideas for experimental approaches to disentangling the specific effects of biological aerosols on rainfall based on what is currently known about feedbacks between land surfaces, their associated microflora and rainfall .
 C.E. Morris et al. Bull. Amer. Meteorol. Soc. doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-15-00293.1 (2016).