Faculty and students in the Mountain Hydrology Research Group are engaged in both individual and collaborative research in the Sierra Nevada of California, in other mountains of the Western U.S. and across the globe. We are studying water and biogeochemical cycles in forested areas, above the tree line, in meadows, and in streams. The basis of our work is a strong observational program, involving both state-of-the art ground-based measurement systems and also satellite and other remotely sensed data.

Mountain regions are experiencing unprecedented stresses, owing shifts in temperature and precipitation patterns associated with climate change, as well as shifts in land use and land cover in response to growing populations.

Given these stresses, it is imperative that a process understanding and predictive ability for mountain hydrology and biogeochemistry be developed, to support planning and resource management decisions.

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Video clip: UC Merced professor Martha Conklin and graduate student Peter Kirchner discuss climate change, Sierra Nevada snow, and advanced measurement programs they are developing in California Heat, KVIE television. See minutes 19:55-23:16.

Sierra Nevada Research Institute UC Merced