Southern Cross University Trees-Mediated Methane Emissions PhD international awards

  • Phd
  • Tuition fees + $28,597 p.a. stipend
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Southern Cross University is offering a PhD scholarship to study the role and contribution of wetland trees in mediating methane emissions to the atmosphere.

This PhD position will be based within the vibrant Southern Cross GeoScience research centre, based at Southern Cross University’s Lismore campus in eastern Australia. Further details on the benefits of living and working in this beautiful part of the world can be found at Southern Cross GeoScience - Future students.

Background

Wetlands are among earth's most efficient ecosystems for carbon sequestration, yet this can be offset by emission of methane - a potent greenhouse gas. Recent research indicates that wetland trees can be an important pathway for methane emissions. Many aspects of this pathway and its underlying processes are largely unquantified and remain relatively unknown. This rapidly evolving topic has considerable scope for new scientific discoveries and this position will build on our recent world-class research described in:

Activities: This scholarship and associated funding represents an opportunity to complete a PhD and conduct a program of research in environmental geochemistry at the interface of wetland soil/water/plant science. As part of a larger team, the successful candidate will contribute to directly measuring methane emissions from freshwater wetland trees species in Australian wetlands and will employ cutting-edge techniques, including portable greenhouse gas analysers and use of isotopic signatures. Investigations will include exploring the spatial, temporal and seasonal CH4 dynamics of tree-stems with a view to furthering our understanding of key processes, drivers and their overall significance in methane budgets.

The successful candidate would be part of a vibrant research group focusing on carbon cycling in wetland systems and will also have the opportunity to work with our international collaborators and to present your discoveries at international scientific conferences.

Eligibility

The ideal candidate is highly motivated for scientific research in environmental geochemistry with a special interest in CH4, wetlands and carbon cycling. The successful applicant will need to meet the entry requirements to enrol in a PhD at Southern Cross University on a full-time basis, including a second-class Honours degree (or above) or a MSc degree (or equivalent) in environmental sciences, soil / aquatic sciences, geo-ecology, geochemistry, chemistry, chemical engineering or a related natural science discipline. Excellent knowledge of spoken and written English as well as excellent communication and team skills are expected. This PhD position is open to international applicants from all counties, in addition to Australian and New Zealand citizens.

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Benefits

Successful candidates will be offered a PhD stipend (for a 3 year duration at the Australian Research Training Program rate; the 2021 rate is $28,597 per year, indexed annually), plus a tuition fee-waiver and an additional stipend to cover research costs.

International candidates are eligible to apply, however, if successful the successful candidate will need to fund their own travel to Australia to commence studies, application fees for any required visa and overseas health cover insurance expenses.

Application

Applicants are asked to submit an expression of interest, which must include a CV, copies of previous research outputs and a cover letter outlining a summary of your research experience, your reasons for wanting to do a PhD and information on how your skills will be relevant to the project (email to scott.johnston@scu.edu.au and damien.maher@scu.edu.au). This project aims to officially start in the first quarter of 2021, but there is some flexibility with the exact starting date (upon mutual agreement). Applications will remain open until filled in 2021.

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