​Julie Loisel

Postdoctoral Research Scholar Institute of the Environment and Sustainability

La Kretz Hall

Suite 300

Los Angeles, CA 90095-1496

Tel: (484) 350-9346

Research interests

My main goal as a scientist is to understand the workings of natural ecosystems to ultimately provide guidance to stakeholders in the fields of policy, industry, civil society, and natural resource management. I believe it is my role to consolidate knowledge about climate change and its impacts on ecosystem dynamics, and to help transferring my expertise into action that promotes sustainable practices.

Over the past decade, my work as a paleoclimatologist has primarily aimed at (1) reconstructing past climatic conditions in high-latitude regions, and (2) analyzing how these past climatic changes have impacted ecosystem dynamics in terms of their structure and function. I have worked on core samples and landscape evolution questions in Alaska, Canada, Kamchatka (Russia), Patagonia (South America), and Antarctica. I am also planning a project that aims at quantifying the spatial distribution of belowground soil-carbon stocks and calculating national soil-carbon reference levels as defined by the United Nation Climate Change Conference.


Ph.D. Earth and Environmental Sciences, Lehigh University, USA (2012)

M.Sc. Physical Geography, Université du Québec - Montréal, Canada (2008)

B.Sc. Physical Geography, Université du Québec - Montréal, Canada (2006)

Current project

At UCLA, I am studying climate change in the US southwest and its impacts on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. I am gathering, synthesizing, and analyzing records of past climate change (e.g., charcoal, pollen, plant macrofossils, isotopes), with a focus on warm and dry events that have occurred over the past 12,000 years to help assessing the natural variability of the regional climate. These datasets will be used to test climate models and provide stakeholders with information related to ecosystem sensitivity to changing hydrological and climatic conditions.

Recent publications

Loisel, J., Yu, Z., Beilman, D.W., Camill, P., Alm, J., Amesbury, M.J., Anderson, D., Andersson, S., Bochicchio, C., Barber, K., Belyea, L.R., Bunbury, J., Chambers, F.M., Charman, D.J., De Vleeschouwer, F., Fiałkiewicz-Kozieł, B., Finkelstein, S.A., Gałka, M., Garneau, M., Hammarlund, D., Hinchcliffe, W., Holmquist, J., Hughes, P., Jones, M.C., Klein, E.S., Kokfelt, U., Korhola, A., Kuhry, P., Lamarre, A., Lamentowicz, M., Large, D., Lavoie, M., MacDonald, G., Magnan, G., Mäkilä, M., Mallon, G., Mathijssen, P., Mauquoy, D., McCarroll, J., Moore, T.R., Nichols, J., O’Reilly, B., Oksanen, P., Packalen, M., Peteet, D., Richard, P.J.H., Robinson, S., Ronkainen, T., Rundgren, M., Sannel, A.B.K., Tarnocai, C., Thom, T., Tuittila, E.-S., Turetsky, M., Väliranta, M., van der Linden, M., van Geel, B., van Bellen, S., Vitt, D., Zhao, Y., Zhou, W. 2014. A database and synthesis of northern peatland soil properties and Holocene carbon and nitrogen accumulation. The Holocene, 24, doi: 10.1177/0959683614538073.

Yu, Z., Loisel, J., Charman, D.J., Beilman, D.W., Camill, P. 2014. Holocene peatland carbon dynamics in the circum-Arctic region: an Introduction. The Holocene, 24, doi: 10.1177/0959683614540730.

Loisel, J., Yu, Z. 2013. Surface vegetation patterning controls carbon accumulation in peatlands. Geophysical Research Letters, 40: 1-6, doi:10.1002/grl.50744.

Loisel, J., Yu, Z. 2013. Holocene peatland carbon dynamics in Patagonia. Quaternary Science Reviews, 69: 125-141.

Loisel, J., Yu, Z., Parsekian, A., Nolan, J., Slater, L. 2013. Quantifying landscape morphology influence on peatland lateral expansion using ground penetrating radar (GPR) and peat core analysis. Journal of Geophysical Research – Biogeosciences, 118, doi: 10.1002/jgrg20029.

Yu, Z., Loisel, J., Turetsky, M.R., Cai, S., Zhao, Y., Frolking, S., MacDonald, G.M., Bubier, J.L. 2013. Evidence for elevated emissions from high-latitude wetlands causing high atmospheric CH4 concentration in the early Holocene. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 27, doi: 10.1002/gbc20025.

Loisel, J., Yu, Z. 2013. Recent acceleration of carbon accumulation in a boreal peatland, south-central Alaska. Journal of Geophysical Research – Biogeosciences, 118, doi: 10.1029/2012jg001978.

Charman, D., Beilman, D., Blaauw, M., Booth, R.K., Brewer, S., Chambers, F., Christen, J.A., Gallego-Sala, A.V., Harrison, S.P., Hughes, P.D.M., Jackson, S., Korhola, A., Mauquoy, D., Mitchell, F., Prentice, I.C., van der Linden, M., De Vleeschouwer, F., Yu, Z., Alm, J., Bauer, I.E.,McCorish, Y., Garneau, M., Hohl, V., Huang, Y., Karofeld, E., Le Roux, G., Loisel, J., Moschen, R., Nichols, J.E., Nieminen, T.M., MacDonald, G.M., Phadtare, N.R., Rausch, N., Sillasoo, Ü., Swindles, G.T., Tuittila, E.-S., Ukonmaanaho, L., Väliranta, M., van Bellen, S., van Geel, B., Vitt, D., Zhao, Y. 2013. Climate-related changes in peatland carbon accumulation during the last millennium. Biogeosciences, 10: 929-944.

Loisel, J., Gallego-Sala, A.V., Yu, Z. 2012. Global-scale pattern of peatland Sphagnum growth driven by photosynthetically active radiation and growing season length. Biogeosciences, 9: 2737-2746.

Yu, Z., Loisel, J., Brosseau, D., Beilman, D., Hunt, S. 2010. Global peatland dynamics since the Last Glacial Maximum. Geophysical Research Letters, 37, L13402, doi: 10.1029/2010GL043584.

Loisel, J., Garneau, M. 2010. Late-Holocene paleoecohydrology and carbon accumulation estimates from two boreal peat bogs in eastern Canada: potential and limits of multi-proxy analyses. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 291:493-533.

Loisel, J., Garneau, M., Hélie, J.-F. 2010. Sphagnum δ13C values as indicators of paleohydrological changes in a peat bog. The Holocene, 20(2): 285-291.

Loisel, J., Garneau, M., Hélie, J.-F. 2009. Modern Sphagnum δ13C signatures follow a surface- moisture gradient in two boreal peat bogs, James Bay lowlands, Québec. Journal of Quaternary Science, 24(3): 209-214.