Plants & GHGs

The NZAGRC’s former nitrous oxide and soil carbon work streams were combined into one programme this year. This ensures a strong overall framework, closer communication and full GHG analyses across the programme. The programme focusses on three key areas:

1. Identifying and prioritising plant traits for low GHG emissions;

2. Mitigation practices to maintain soil carbon and reduce nitrous oxide emissions at paddock scale; and

3. Defining the achievable soil carbon stabilisation capacity of New Zealand grassland soils.

Current progress and research stories

NZAGRC scholarship forges future international collaboration

Congratulations to Nicolas Puche who has successfully defended his PhD at Massey University. Nicolas came to New Zealand in 2012 on a scholarship funded by the NZAGRC - his doctoral thesis, ‘Detailed temporal modelling of carbon and water fluxes from pastures in New Zealand: A case study of an experimental dairy farm in the Waikato region’ was supervised by scientists from Massey, Waikato University, Landcare Research and AgResearch.

Nicolas, who hails from Toulon in the south of France, has degrees in electronics and environmental monitoring. Before coming to New Zealand he worked at a research institution where he developed the photosynthesis components of a water and greenhouse gases budgets model for crops. The opportunity to come to New Zealand and link agricultural greenhouse gas emissions with his modelling experience seemed ideal to Nicolas, and since arriving here he’s quickly learned all about New Zealand’s pastoral agricultural system and its impacts on the soil.

Nicolas has already been offered a post-doctoral position by the French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA) in Paris where he will continue to work with scientists in New Zealand using CenW through a Global Partnership in Livestock Emissions Research (GPLER)-funded collaborative project. The NZAGRC-funded scholarship has enabled this future international collaboration with the promise to advance the relevant greenhouse gas science. 

Nicolas' thesis has also laid the ground work for several publications, which will be progressed after his return to France. 

Bon voyage and à bientôt, Nicolas - we are looking forward to our continued work with you!


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