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Macarena Cárdenas

Research Manager

I'm a passionate environmental researcher and over the last 14 years, I've focused on understanding the long-term dynamics (from modern times to hundreds of thousands of years!) of varied ecosystems, especially forests, and their responses to climate change and human impact.

I'm currently working on a project focused on urban sustainability. The research project is dedicated to understanding how the use of Green Infrastructure, with special interest on urban trees, can be used as a sustainable tool to support and create resilient cities in the face of climate change and urbanisation. This research involves various disciplines and the participation of citizen scientists. Our study aims to determinate how urban trees can benefit cities by cooling the environment and mitigating flooding and soil pollution. The outcomes of this crucial research will inform land management practices and planning of green urban areas to better mitigate climate change and urbanisation.

I've been interested in human-vegetation linkages and their interrelationship from pre-historic times to the present day for a long time. During my career as researcher, I've been fascinated to discover how strong the human-vegetation/environment relationship is and how our actions can have a large impact. The revelations in the findings of my research and that of other environmental scientists has brought me closer and closer to the idea that knowledge has to be disseminated and put in the hands of the people who care and can have a real impact on our environment. For this reason, I've become a devoted Earthwatch scientist, keen to support collective action and facilitate positive change through the engagement of citizens, researchers, government agencies and businesses.

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