Sigrid Resh

Sigrid Resh portrait
"If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in."
—Rachel Carson (1907-1964)


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Research Assistant Professor, SFRES

  • PhD, Forest Ecology, Colorado State University
  • MS, Resource Economics, Michigan State University
  • BS, Merchandising Management and Economics, Michigan State University

Ecosystem processes related to carbon cycling

My current research focuses are: 1. Importance of wood contributions to soil carbon pools and fluxes, and 2. Soil sustainability and land use. My training is in processes related to forested ecosystem carbon storage. I've examined changes in carbon storage related to forest age (Wyoming, USA), the influence of nitrogen-fixing tree species (Hawaii and Puerto Rico, USA), and coarse root production and soil differences (Tasmania, Australia).

I've found stable isotopes to be a valuable tool for some of my research questions. Carbon isotopes allowed me to look at losses of old soil carbon and gains of new soil carbon in systems of land use change from C4 to C3 species, and I've used oxygen isotopes to evaluate water sources of riparian bur oak. I'm in the midst of refocusing my belowground carbon storage work into ecosystem restoration with an emphasis on soil. I feel that it is an imperative that I help to restore ecosystems that have been disrupted. I now look at our world through the eyes of my two young children, who have greatly influenced my views on how important it is to help where you can.

Links of Interest

Areas of Expertise

  • Forest carbon dynamics
  • Soil sustainability
  • Forest restoration
  • Isotope applications in forests

Recent Publications

  • Gollany, H.T., Titus, B.D., Resh, S.C., Cisz, M., Asbjornsen, H., Chimner, R.A., Scott, D., Kaczmarek, D., Leite, L.F.C., Ferreira, A.C.C., Galdos, M.V., Hilbert, J., and Rod, K. In Review. Biogeochemical research priorities for sustainable biofuel and bioenergy feedstock production in Pan-America. Environmental Management.
  • Schrank, AJ, SC Resh, WJ Previant, and RA Chimner. In Press. Characterization and Classification of Vernal Pool Vegetation, Soil, and Amphibians of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. American Midland Naturalist.
  • Chimner, RA and SC Resh. 2014. Water Sources of Riparian Bur Oak Using Stable Water Isotopes in Homestead National Monument, Nebraska. Natural Areas Journal 34(1):56-64.
  • Resh, S.C., L. Joyce, M.G. Ryan. 2008. Fuel Treatments by Mulching—A Synthesis of the Ecological Impacts. In review with USDA-Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station GTR.
  • Resh, S.C., M. Battaglia, D. Worledge, and S. Ladiges. 2003. Coarse root biomass for eucalypt plantations in Tasmania, Australia: sources of variation and methods for assessment. Trees: Structure and Function 17:389-399.
  • Rothe, A., Cromack, K. Jr., Resh, S., Makineci, E., and Son, Y. 2002. Soil carbon and nitrogen changes under Douglas-fir with and without red alder. Soil Science Society of America Journal 66:1988-1995.
  • Resh, S.C., D. Binkley, and J.A. Parrotta. 2002. Greater soil carbon sequestration under nitrogen-fixing tree species compared with Eucalyptus species. Ecosystems 5:217-231.
  • Kaye, J., S.C. Resh, M.W. Kaye, and R.A. Chimner. 2000. Nutrient and carbon dynamics in a replacement series of Eucalyptus and Albizia trees. Ecology 81:3267-3273.

Recent Funding

  • 2011-2014. Resh, SC, PI. Interactive Effects of Climate Change and Decomposer Communities on the Stabilization of Wood-Derived Carbon Pools: Catalyst for a New Study. Office of Science (BER), U.S. Department of Energy. $149,397.
  • 2012-2017. Halvorsen, K, PI. OISE-PIRE: Sustainability, Ecosystem Services, and Bioenergy Development across the Americas. NSF PIRE, $4,841,735.
  • 2011-2015. Shonnard, DR, PI. RCN-SEES: A Research Coordination Network on Pan American Biofuels Bioenergy Sustainability. NSF-RCN. $749,996.