Dr Charilaos Yiotis
- Postdoctoral Researcher
Charilaos (Harry) Yiotis is a Plant Physiologist with a strong research track record in Eco-physiology, Climate Change Biology and Crop Physiology and he is currently an iCRAG (SFI) Postdoctoral research fellow at TCD. Harry graduated from University of Patras, Greece with a BSc in Biological Sciences in 2006 and went on to complete a PhD degree in Plant Physiology in 2012. Since 2012, he has undertaken 2 post-doctoral research fellowships at University College Dublin; first under the mentorship of Prof. Jennifer McElwain on the ERC-funded project “Oxyevol” from 2012 to 2016 followed by his own independent IRC-funded project “Futu-Rye” (2016-2018) under the mentorship of Professor Bruce Osborne.
Harry’s expertise in plant photosynthesis and gas exchange has led to significantly improved understanding of the adaptability of photosynthesis and photorespiration to atmospheric change in different evolutionary groups and most recently has been employed to test prevailing assumptions about optimized stomatal behaviour in land plants under climate change, with important implications for the hydrological cycle. Harry’s research spans from basic research on the evolutionary and ecological significance of plant physiological and anatomical traits to the applied use of these traits to screen future crops that will be most productive under anthropogenic climate change (“Futu-Rye” project).
Atmospheric CO2 is increasing at a faster rate than any time in Earth history due to anthropogenic processes such as burning of fossil fuels and land-use change. Harry is currently working on an iCRAG proof of concept project, which will test a new negative carbon emission technology and aims to optimize a protocol for enhanced plant-mediated carbon sequestration for future field-based trials and large-scale agricultural practices.
The scale and rate of current global climate change exceeds current political capacity to decarbonize in order to bring Earth’s atmospheric composition into a stead state. Several geoengineering solutions are being discussed by policy makers to help reduce existing CO2 from the atmosphere. Of these, enhanced chemical weathering offers one theoretical solution of balancing global C emissions by increasing the rate at which plant mediated CO2 helps to weather calcium silicate rocks, which in turn increase the rate at which carbonates are deposited in the ocean system. This process sequesters carbon from the atmospheric reservoir into that of the ocean and has potential to temporarily increase C storage in soil (as SOC, soil organic carbon). This iCRAG-funded proof of concept project will investigate the C fate in andisol, a soil type naturally 'fertilised' with baslatic volcanci ash, and experimentally explore the sequestration potential of the addition of volcanic ash to Irish grassland crops (model species Lollium perenne) under future climate scenarios as a geoengineering solution.
- Postdoctoral Researcher