Ideas and perspectives: Biogeochemistry – some key foci for the future

TitleIdeas and perspectives: Biogeochemistry – some key foci for the future
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsBianchi, TS, Anand, M, Bauch, CT, Canfield, DE, De Meester, L, Fennel, K, Groffman, PM, Pace, ML, Saito, M, Simpson, MJ
Pagination3005 - 3013
Date Published2021/05/19/
ISBN Number1726-4170
Keywordsgroffman_p, LTER-HBR

Abstract. Biogeochemistry has an important role to play in many environmental issues of current concern related to global change and air, water, and soil quality. However, reliable predictions and tangible implementation of solutions, offered by biogeochemistry, will need further integration of disciplines. Here, we refocus on how further developing and strengthening ties between biology, geology, chemistry, and social sciences will advance biogeochemistry through (1) better incorporation of mechanisms, including contemporary evolutionary adaptation, to predict changing biogeochemical cycles, and (2) implementing new and developing insights from social sciences to better understand how sustainable and equitable responses by society are achieved. The challenges for biogeochemists in the 21st century are formidable and will require both the capacity to respond fast to pressing issues (e.g., catastrophic weather events and pandemics) and intense collaboration with government officials, the public, and internationally funded programs. Keys to success will be the degree to which biogeochemistry can make biogeochemical knowledge more available to policy makers and educators about predicting future changes in the biosphere, on timescales from seasons to centuries, in response to climate change and other anthropogenic impacts. Biogeochemistry also has a place in facilitating sustainable and equitable responses by society.