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Brenden McNeil

Professor of Geography

Categorized As

Role: Faculty,
Focus or Research Area: Geography,

Forest Ecosystem Ecology and Remote Sensing — I work with students and collaborators to examine the interaction of forests and human-caused global change.

By using tools such as imaging spectroscopy, LiDAR, and tower-based phenocams from observatories like the National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON), we measure precisely how, where, and why the health of forests is affected by global changes like droughts and invasive insects.  Critically, this analysis also reveals how, where, and why forest health can aid human resiliency (e.g. via forest carbon storage) to global change.

Current and ongoing research projects

  • Tree Crown Economics: testing and scaling a functional trait-based theory – Funded by the National Science Foundation Macrosystems Biology – NEON Enabled Science program (2021-2025)
  • Application of Prescribed Fire to Control Southern Pine Beetle, Callery Pear, and Spotted Lantern Fly -funded by a USDA Forest Service Joint Venture Agreement (2022-2025)

Representative papers

  1. McNeil, B.E., D.A. Erazo, T.Z. Heimerl, C.J. King, R.T. Fahey, A.J. Elmore. (2023) Tree Crown Economics. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 21:40-48
  1. Fang, F., B.E. McNeil,A. Warner, G.P. Dahle, E. Eutsler (2020) Street tree health from space? An evaluation using WorldView-3 data and the Washington D.C. Street Tree Spatial Database Urban Forestry & Urban Greening 49:126634
  1. Eastman, B.A. M.B. Adams, E.R. Brzostek, M. Burnham, J. Carrara, C. Kelly, B.E. McNeil, C.A. Walter, W.T. Peterjohn (2021) Altered plant carbon allocation enhanced carbon storage in forest vegetation and soil after 25 years of nitrogen additions. New Phytologist 230:1435-1448

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