Kevin Geyer Harrison

Kevin Geyer Harrison

Affiliated Scholar
Position Type
Affiliated Scholars
Service
- Present
Specialization
Global Change Geochemist
Biography

My research explores past, present, and future atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. I am working on explaining why atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were lower during glacial times. My research on contemporary and future carbon dioxide levels attempts to explain why atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are increasing more slowly than expected.

I have introduced the impact exsolution hypothesis to link the Chicxulub collision and the state change in Deccan volcanism. This research explains how planetary scale collisions may trigger volcanism: when large objects such as asteroids or comets hit planets, they generate seismic waves that cause exsolution in magma, which initiates eruptions. Since co-occurrences of impactor collisions and volcanism have been linked with mass extinctions, this may help improve our understanding of the events surrounding the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary. Further, impacts may have triggered past volcanic eruptions on Earth and other planets, and may play a role in triggering future volcanic eruptions.

Degree(s)
B.S, Brown University; M.S., Scripps Institution of Oceanography; M.Phil., Ph.D., Columbia University

Learning & Teaching

Courses

Denison University

Science and the Environment (ENVS 102).

McDaniel College

Senior Seminar (EPS 4494).
Biogeochemistry of the Habitable Planet (EPS 3112).
Climate Change (EPS 3110).
Energy and the Environment (EPS 1116).
Environmental Chemistry (EPS 2203).
Environmental Geology (EPS 1117).
Environmental Problem Solving (EPS 1131).
Environmental Problem Solving—First Year Seminar (EPS 1131).

Northeastern University

Dynamic Earth (GEO 200).
Earth Landforms and Processes (GEO 340).
Glacial and Quaternary History (GEO 570).
Global Climate Change (GEO 116).

Boston College

Biogeochemistry of the Habitable Planet (GE 465).
Climate Change (GE 405).
Environmental Geochemistry: Living Dangerously (GE 392).
Environmental Seminar (GE 580).
Exploring the Earth I (GE 132). In collaboration with Chris Hepburn.
Marine Geological Processes (GE 692). In collaboration with Alan Kafka and Gail Kineke.
Weather, Climate, and the Environment II: Global Warming (GE 175).

TEACHING QUANTITATIVE SKILLS IN THE GEOSCIENCES (SERC)

Developed an on-line exercise for teaching quantitative skills in the geosciences. “Machines that change climate: Porsche 911 Turbo vs. Toyota Prius.” This activity shows students that decisions they make can significantly alter the amount of greenhouse gases they release to the environment. Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carlton College. (serc.carleton.edu/quantskills/activities/harrison.html)

Academic Positions

Visiting Assistant Professor, Denison University, 2013-14.

Assistant Professor of Environmental Policy and Science, McDaniel College, 2005—2010.

Visiting Assistant Professor, Northeastern University, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, 2004—2005.

Assistant Professor, Boston College, Department of Geology and Geophysics, 1997-2004.

Earth Sciences Postdoctoral Fellow, National Science Foundation, Duke University, 1995-1997.

Global Change Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Energy, Oak Ridge National Lab, 1994.

Global Change Graduate Fellow, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Columbia University, 1991-1993.

Graduate Research Fellow, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Advanced Study Program, Boulder, CO, 1990.

Research

Research Overview
My research explores past, present, and future atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. I am working on explaining why atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were lower during glacial times. My research on contemporary and future carbon dioxide levels attempts to explain why atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are increasing more slowly than expected.
Research Details

Opening new vistas

Finding the missing carbon

I research processes that influence past, present and future atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. I have developed a strategy for quantifying the amount of additional carbon stored in soil due to carbon dioxide fertilization. The initial results from this soil carbon research help explain why atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are increasing more slowly than expected. I have pioneered the "silica hypothesis" that suggests that increasing the inventory of silica in the ocean may increase diatom abundance while decreasing coccolith abundance. Recently, I have introduced the “reverse ocean acidification hypothesis” that suggests that the soft-tissue pump efficiency increased when surface ocean pCO2 levels decreased. Both these changes help explain why atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were lower during glacial times.

Soil carbon research

Active soil carbon

My first research objective has been to quantify the amount of carbon that exchanges between soil and the atmosphere. Without this information, it is impossible to determine if carbon stored in soil could significantly change carbon dioxide levels and if soil could be the location of the “missing sink.” The “missing sink” is the term coined by scientists to describe the contemporary imbalance between the known sources and sinks of atmospheric carbon dioxide. About 25% of the carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere by fossil fuel combustion and changing land use is missing. This “missing sink” is slowing the build-up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. My soil radiocarbon research has shown that soil carbon exchanges between 20 and 25 billion tons of carbon/year with the atmosphere (Harrison et al., 1993a; Harrison, 1996; Harrison and Bonani, 2000). Just under half of the terrestrial net primary production resides in the soil before being returned to the atmosphere. As the first quantitative estimate of this flux, my research has clearly demonstrated soil carbon’s potential to influence atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and be the possible location of the “missing sink.” Soil contains carbon that has turnover times ranging from days to thousands of years. To understand these dynamics, my research team developed an analytical method to isolate mineral-bound soil carbon (Mahoney et al., 2003). This enabled bulk radiocarbon measurements to be used to determine the inventory and turnover time of both active soil carbon and passive soil carbon. These turnover times and inventories are fully constrained by carbon and radiocarbon measurements. It was surprising to discover that soil carbon compounds having a multitude of turnover times could be represented by a two-component model and that switching to a three-component model resulted in poorer agreement between the model and the data. Soil consists of a mixture of active and passive carbon, but it is only the active carbon that responds to perturbations. Although experiments that measure changes in bulk carbon in response to perturbations are interesting, their value and usefulness increase exponentially if they determine the initial and final active soil carbon turnover times and inventories as I illustrate below. A second benefit of isolating the mineral-bound soil was that the variability in the mineral-bound soil carbon was less than the variability observed in the bulk soil carbon.

Dynamic carbon storage

My research has introduced the concept of “dynamic carbon storage” (Harrison, 1993a; Harrison, 2004; Harrison et al., 2004). Dynamic carbon storage occurs in pools having short turnover times of 100 years or less. The carbon accumulates in the active carbon pool because the flux of the carbon into the pool exceeds the flux of the carbon leaving the pool. Excepting fossil fuels, my research shows that carbon pools having turnover times of greater than 1000 years cannot significantly change atmospheric carbon dioxide levels in our lifetime (Harrison et al., 1993a). My colleagues and I have tested my theories by seeing how soil carbon dynamics and inventories respond to perturbations. We discovered that cultivated soil had lower radiocarbon values than native soil, because plowing mixes radiocarbon-rich surface soil with depleted deeper soil, and farming reduces the inventory of active soil carbon (Harrison et al., 1993b). A related study explained changes in soil carbon and radiocarbon following agricultural abandonment. We observed a 12-year turnover time for carbon in recovering soil, which is twice as fast as the soil carbon turnover time in undisturbed temperate forests and grasslands (Harrison et al., 1995). The observed rapid turnover demonstrates that soil can remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere faster than expected. It also shows that recovering soil will respond to perturbations, such as elevated carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, faster than native soil. Carbon turnover times can be used to estimate the flux of atmospheric carbon dioxide into abandoned agricultural land, a number that was not well known before this approach was developed. My approach has demonstrated that active soil carbon has the potential to influence atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and is one of the most likely locations for the “missing sink.” Processes that could alter the amount of active soil carbon storage include CO2 fertilization, changing land use, anthropogenic nitrogen deposition, and climate change.

CO2 fertilization

My next objective was to see if CO2 fertilization has been removing enough carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and storing it in the active soil carbon reservoir to balance the global budget. CO2 fertilization occurs if vegetation grows faster when exposed to higher carbon dioxide levels. The accelerated plant growth may increase belowground soil carbon storage. To test the CO2 fertilization/active soil carbon storage hypothesis, I looked at soil carbon changes in three enrichment experiments. I have found that elevated carbon dioxide levels increased soil carbon storage in three experimental settings—an intact forest Free-Air Carbon Enrichment (FACE) site, a white oak experiment, and a loblolly experiment—where trees were exposed to elevated CO2 levels. My research team found that soil carbon accumulation rates for an intact forest exposed to 570 ppm of carbon dioxide were 30% greater than the forest’s ambient counterpart after 3.5 years (Harrison et al., 2001; Heumann et al., 2001); that soil carbon accumulation rates for white oaks exposed to 660 ppm of carbon dioxide were 14% greater than their ambient counterparts after four years (Harrison et al., 2004); and that soil carbon accumulation rates for loblolly pines exposed to 660 ppm of carbon dioxide were 21% greater than their ambient counterparts after four years (Grunauer et al., 1998). The results of these three studies have been supported by similar results from CO2 fertilization studies reported by other researchers. For example, Luo et al. (2006) looked at 104 published papers from various carbon dioxide fertilization experiments. They found forty experiments that reported soil carbon results. The soil collected from the elevated sites had, on average, 5.4% more carbon than soil collected from the ambient sites.

CO2 fertilization factor

Although these empirical results are interesting, they do little to improve predictions of future atmospheric carbon dioxide levels or global warming. To add value to these findings, I have developed the concept of the soil carbon CO2 fertilization factor (σCF) (Harrison, 2004). The σCF lets researchers compare the results of carbon dioxide enrichment experiments that have different soil carbon turnover times, different levels of CO2 enrichment, and different lengths of exposure to elevated carbon dioxide levels. I have used the σCF to estimate increases in soil carbon uptake due to observed contemporary increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. I calculated σCF for each experimental setting by measuring changes in carbon inventories and radiocarbon ratios and determining the inventories and turnover time of active soil carbon. The intact forest had a σCF of 1.8. The white oak ecosystem had a σCF of 1.18 (Harrison et al., 2004; Harrison, 2004) and the loblolly pine stand had a σCF of 0.9. If the average soil carbon CO2 fertilization factor was 0.7, it would account for the “missing sink.” These results show that elevated carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are increasing the flux of carbon from the atmosphere to soil. Concurrent with my team’s CO2 fertilization research, my colleagues and I developed the experimental technique and theoretical background to differentiate between carbon dioxide respired by roots and carbon dioxide respired by microbial oxidation (Andrews et al., 1999). My colleagues and I found that root respiration comprised 55% of the total soil respiration. Future soil carbon research

My future research will include measuring the CO2 fertilization factor for major ecosystems across the globe and determining how climate change alters active soil carbon storage. My approach can also be used to test and refine soil carbon fractionation methods and provide parameters for carbon models that include carbon fluxes to and from soil. My research has provided a new approach for examining how terrestrial ecosystems respond to perturbations, such as CO2 fertilization, climate change, anthropogenic nitrogen deposition, and changing land use. The increased flux of carbon into soil may increase nitrogen fixation and accelerate chemical weathering, so nutrient limitations may not significantly alter the observed CO2 fertilization response. For example, we observed a large increase in soil nitrogen below the intact forest that was exposed to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and will investigate how weathering rates change in response to elevated carbon dioxide levels. Nitrogen may also be supplied by anthropogenic nitrogen deposition in some areas. My research team has started to look at how elevated carbon dioxide levels influence carbon storage in litter. It will be interesting to see how changing soil carbon input affects populations of nitrogen fixing bacteria, nitrogen fixation rates, and the weathering rates of various elements. During glacial times, the lower carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere may have caused “CO2 starvation.” My research team will also look at how “CO2 starvation” impacted terrestrial carbon storage and rock weathering rates.

Silica research

My “silica” and “reverse ocean acidification” hypotheses may help explain why carbon dioxide levels were lower during glacial times and why atmospheric radiocarbon levels were higher during glacial times (Harrison, 1995, 2000, 2010). Carbon dioxide levels were about 80 ppm lower during glacial times compared to interglacial times. The resulting improved understanding of the global carbon cycle will lead to more accurate predictions of future carbon dioxide levels.

Silica hypothesis

The “silica hypothesis” suggests that an increase in dust delivery to the ocean set into motion a series of processes that drastically changed the chemistry, biology, physics and pCO2 of the glacial ocean. The glacial ocean was very different from the modern ocean and the principle of uniformitarianism needs to be overlooked to understand why carbon dioxide levels were lower during glacial times.

I have shown that dust levels would only need to have increased by a factor of 2 to 7 to increase the oceanic inventory of silica enough to cut calcite production by 40% (Harrison, 2000). Later research by my team has shown that the amount of silica released by dust is greater than estimates used in Harrison (2000), so the actual amount of dust required to support the decrease in calcite has decreased. It’s clear that dust could provide enough silica to the ocean to increase the inventory of silica in the deep ocean, which, in turn, increases the flux of silica into the mixed layer.

In the presence of sufficient silica, diatoms out-compete coccoliths in the mixed layer, which reduces the production of calcite. The presence of iron in the mixed layer causes diatoms to use the silica more efficiently, also increasing diatom populations. The resulting thinner diatom shells increase silica recycling efficiency in the upper ocean and hinder the preservation of diatom shells in the marine sediments.

Reverse Ocean Acidification hypothesis

During interglacial times, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere averaged 280 ppm. In contrast, carbon dioxide levels were about 90 ppm lower during the last glacial maximum, which enabled phytoplankton to grow larger and denser calcium carbonate shells. This concept shows how these larger and denser shells may have helped maintain low atmospheric carbon dioxide levels during glacial times by increasing the efficiency of the softtissue pump.

Future silica research

Future silica hypothesis research includes measuring sterols and alkenones in marine sediment to document the increase in diatoms during glacial times, doing additional dust dissolution experiments to see if Si isotopes are fractionated by the dissolution process, and experimentally testing many aspects of the “silica” and “reverse ocean acidification” hypotheses to further develop these ideas.

Dissolved organic carbon research

Currently, scientists do not know the turnover time of dissolved organic carbon in seawater. Without this knowledge, it is impossible to determine if the relatively large inventory of dissolved organic carbon has the potential to influence atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. I have developed a technique for using radiocarbon measurements to determine the turnover time of soil organic matter (Harrison et al., 1993a). I will modify and use this approach to determine the turnover time of dissolved organic carbon in seawater.

Summary

My research is curiosity-driven. I love learning and solving problems. My research has helped explain why contemporary carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are increasing more slowly than expected and why carbon dioxide levels were lower during glacial times. In the future, I hope to do more experimental research to extend my soil carbon and silica research. My research builds on the work of other researchers and would not be possible without the generous support of mentors and colleagues. I hope that my research will help other scientists extend their research.

References

  • Andrews, J.A., K.G. Harrison, R. Matamala & W.H. Schlesinger. 1999. Separation of root respiration from total soil respiration using C-13 labeling during Free-Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE). Soil Science Society of America Journal, 64, 1429-1435.
  • Grunauer, M.A., K.G. Harrison, A.L. Kafka, D.T. Tissue & R.B. Thomas. 1998. Measuring the effect of CO2 fertilization on soil organic material beneath Loblolly pines. EOS Trans., American Geophysical Union, 79, 17, S47.
  • Harrison, K. G. 1995. The role of increased silica input on Paleo-CO2 levels. EOS, 76, 46, F292. This research was published before Nozaki and Oba submitted their 1995 paper: Nozaki Y. & T. Oba. 1995. Dissolution of calcareous tests in the ocean and atmospheric carbon dioxide, in Biogeochemical Processes and Ocean Flux in the Western Pacific, edited by H. Sakai and Y. Nozaki, Tokyo: TerraPub, p 83-92.
  • Harrison, K.G. 1996. Using bulk soil radiocarbon measurements to estimate soil carbon turnover times: Implications for atmospheric CO2 levels. Radiocarbon, 38, 3, 181-190.
  • Harrison, K.G. 2000. The role of increased marine silica input on paleo-pCO2 levels. Paleoceanography, 15, 3, 292-298. [Reviewed by Treguer, P. and P. Pondaven. 2000. Silica control of carbon dioxide. Nature, 406, 358-359.]
  • Harrison, K.G. 2004. The soil carbon CO2 fertilization factor: The measure of an ecosystem's capacity to increase soil carbon storage in response to elevated CO2 levels. Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 5, 5, Q05002, doi:10.1029/2003GC000686.
  • Harrison, K. G. 2010. Can changes in oceanic biogeochemical cycles explain atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and radiocarbon levels during the last glacial maximum?, Eos Trans., 91(26), Ocean Sci. Meet. Suppl., Abstract PO21C-02.
  • Harrison, K.G. & G. Bonani. 2000. A strategy for estimating the potential soil carbon storage due to CO2 fertilization. In The Global Carbon Cycle, edited by T. M. L. Wigley, D. S. Schimel, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 141-150. Harrison, K.G., W.S. Broecker & G. Bonani. 1993a. A strategy for estimating the impact of CO2 fertilization on soil carbon storage. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 7, 1, 69-80.
  • Harrison, K.G., W.S. Broecker & G. Bonani. 1993b. The effect of changing land use on soil radiocarbon. Science, 262, 725-726.
  • Harrison, K.G., R.J. Norby, W.M. Post & E.L. Chapp. 2004. Soil carbon accumulation in a white oak CO2 enrichment experiment via enhanced root production. Earth Interactions, 8, 1-15, DOI: 10.1175/1087- 3562(2004)8<1:SCAIAW>2.0.CO;2.
  • Harrison, K.G., W.M. Post & D.D. Richter. 1995. Soil carbon turnover in a recovering temperate forest. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 9, 4, 449-454.
  • Harrison, K.G., L. Weeden, R.J. Heumann & A.L. Kafka. 2001. Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of carbon transferred from the atmosphere to soil because of CO2 fertilization. EOS Trans., 82, 20, S77.
  • Heumann, R.J., A.L. Kafka, & K.G. Harrison. 2001. Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of soil carbon and nitrogen accumulation due to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. EOS, Trans., 82, 20, S92.
  • Luo, Y., D. Hui & D. Zhang. 2006. Elevated CO2 stimulates net accumulations of carbon and nitrogen in land ecosystems: a meta-analysis. Ecology, 87, 1, 53-63.
  • Mahoney, R. J., A.L. Kafka & K.G. Harrison. 2003. Procedure for determining soil-bound organic carbon and nitrogen. In Changing Land Use and Terrestrial Carbon Storage, Global Discovery Press, 1-21.

Works

Publications

Harrison, K.G. 2004. The soil carbon CO 2 fertilization factor: The measure of an ecosystem's
capacity to increase soil carbon storage in response to elevated CO 2 levels. Geochemistry,
Geophysics, Geosystems, 5, 5, Q05002, doi:10.1029/2003GC000686.


Harrison, K.G., R.J. Norby, W.M. Post & E.L. Chapp. 2004. Soil carbon accumulation in a
white oak CO 2 enrichment experiment via enhanced root production. Earth Interactions,
8, 1-15, DOI: 10.1175/1087-3562(2004)8<1:SCAIAW>2.0.CO;2.


Harrison, K.G. 2000. The role of increased marine silica input on paleo-pCO 2 levels.
Paleoceanography, 15, 3, 292-298. [Reviewed by Treguer, P. and P. Pondaven. 2000.
Silica control of carbon dioxide. Nature, 406, 358-359.]


Harrison, K.G. & G. Bonani. 2000. A strategy for estimating the potential soil carbon
storage due to CO 2 fertilization. In The Global Carbon Cycle, edited by T.M.L. Wigley,
D.S. Schimel, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 141-150.


Andrews, J.A., K.G. Harrison, R. Matamala & W.H. Schlesinger. 1999. Separation of root
respiration from total soil respiration using C-13 labeling during Free-Air CO 2
Enrichment (FACE). Soil Science Society of America Journal, 64, 1429-1435.


Harrison, K.G. 1997. Using bulk radiocarbon measurements to estimate soil organic matter
turnover times. In Soil Processes and the Carbon Cycle, Advances in Soil Science, edited
by Rattan Lal, John M. Kimble, Ronald F. Follett, Bobby A. Stewart, New York: CRC
Press, 549-559.


Harrison, K.G. 1996. Using bulk soil radiocarbon measurements to estimate soil carbon
turnover times: Implications for atmospheric CO 2 levels. Radiocarbon, 38, 2, 181-190.
Harrison, K.G. 1995. The role of increased silica input on Paleo-CO 2 levels. EOS, 76, 46,
F292.


Harrison, K.G., W.M. Post & D.D. Richter. 1995. Soil carbon turnover in a recovering
temperate forest. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 9, 4, 449-454.


Richter, D.D., D. Markewitz, C.G. Wells, H.L. Allen, J. Dunscombe, K.G. Harrison, P.R.
Heine, A. Stuanes, B. Urrego & G. Bonani. 1995. Carbon cycling in an old-field
Loblolly pine forest: Implications for “missing” carbon sinks and for the fundamental
concept of soil, In Proceedings, Eighth North American Forest Soils Conference, Univ.
Florida, Gainesville, edited by W. W. McFee, J. M. Kelly, 233-251.


Connin, S.L., R.A. Virginia, P. Chamberlain, L. Huenneke, K.G. Harrison & W.H.
Schlesinger. 1995. Dynamics of carbon storage in degraded arid land environments: A
case study from the Jornada Experimental Range, New Mexico (USA). In CombatingGlobal Warming by Combating Land Degradation. United Nations Environment
Programme (UNEP), edited by V. R. Squires, E. P. Glen & A. T. Ayoub, 132-145.


Harrison, K.G., W.S. Broecker & G. Bonani. 1993a. A strategy for estimating the impact of
CO 2 fertilization on soil carbon storage. Global Biogeochemical Cycles, 7, 1, 69-80.
Harrison, K.G., W.S. Broecker & G. Bonani. 1993b. The effect of changing land use on soil
radiocarbon. Science, 262, 725-726.


REPORTS:


Segal, M.G. & K.G. Harrison. 2003. Soil carbon storage in abandoned agricultural land in the
Duke Forest. In Changing Land Use and Terrestrial Carbon Storage, Global Discovery
Press, 34-53.


Harrison, K.G. M.G. Segal, M.H. Hoskins & A.L. Kafka. 2003. Assessing the impact of
tillage methods on soil carbon levels and crop yield. In Changing Land Use and
Terrestrial Carbon Storage, Global Discovery Press, 22-33.


Mahoney, R. J., A.L. Kafka & K.G. Harrison. 2003. Procedure for determining soil-bound
organic carbon and nitrogen. In Changing Land Use and Terrestrial Carbon Storage,
Global Discovery Press, 1-21.


Weiss, R.F., M.J. Warner, P.K. Salameh, F.A. Van Woy & K.G. Harrison. 1993. South
Atlantic Ventilation Experiment: SIO chlorofluorocarbon measurements. SIO Reference
93-94.

Service

Professional Memberships

COMMUNITY SERVICE/PUBLIC EDUCATION:

Terrestrial Carbon Research Program Proposal Review, US Department of Energy, Washington, DC. Program Manager: Mike Kuperberg. June 15-16, 2010.

Radio interview: National Public Radio, Midday Show with Dan Rodricks (WYPR Baltimore). “What happens to discarded cell phones?” March 19, 2008.

Television Special: History Channel, “Life After People.” Appeared on show to explain how chemical and physical weathering would alter the landscape. Originally broadcast January 21, 2008. http://www.history.com/shows/life-after-people

Radio interview: National Public Radio, Marc Steiner Show (WYPR Baltimore). “Google’s recently-announced renewable energy initiatives.” December 3, 2007.

Radio interview: National Public Radio, Marc Steiner Show (WYPR Baltimore). The show explored the multi-million dollar bottled water industry. July 24, 2007.

Quoted by Simon Busch, Financial Times in, “It's time to warm to the wild look,” which discussed how global warming was influencing gardeners and farmers. March 30, 2007.
http://us.ft.com/ftgateway/superpage.ft?news_id=fto033020071405420504

Radio interview: National Public Radio, Marc Steiner Show (WYPR Baltimore). “Renewable energy and President Bush’s State of the Union Speech.” January 25, 2007.

Television interview: WBAL-TV, Baltimore (NBC affiliate). “Global Warming Could Change the Baltimore Landscape.” The story relates to the Supreme Court Case on anthropogenic climate change and EPA’s role in regulating carbon dioxide emissions. Broadcast November 29, 2006.
http://www.thewbalchannel.com/video/10425675/index.html?taf=bal

Terrestrial Carbon Research Program Proposal Review, US Department of Energy, Washington, DC. Program Manager: Dr. Roger Dahlman. May 31–June 2, 2006.

Reviewed two Web-based projects for “Teaching Quantitative Skills in Geoscience.” The “Teaching Quantitative Skills in Geoscience” program is funded by a series of grants from the National Science Foundation and administered by the Science Education Research Center (SERC) at Carleton College: http://serc.carleton.edu/

Carbon Cycle Panel. Reviewed grant proposals and recommended awards for proposals submitted to the North American Carbon Program for US Department of Agriculture, US Department of Energy, and NASA, Summer, 2004.

Invited speaker, “Can Si control atmospheric carbon dioxide levels?” AGU Chapman Conference, The Role of Diatom Production and Si Flux and Burial in the Regulation of Global Cycles, Paros, Greece, Fall 2003.

Moderator, Earth Day Global Warming debate between Bill Moomaw and Andrew Solow, Boston College, April, 2000.

Director, Undergraduate Studies, Department of Geology and Geophysics, Boston College, 1999-2004.

Convened special session, “Balancing the global atmospheric carbon dioxide budget,” American Geophysical Union Meeting, San Francisco, CA, Fall 1999.

Session chair, “Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology: Observations and Models,” American Geophysical Union Meeting, Boston, MA, Spring 1999.

Interviewed by NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) about my “silica hypothesis” for explaining the glacial/interglacial pCO2 transition. Episode 8, Planet Ocean Series, broadcast December, 1998.

Featured scientist: “Missing carbon may be soil bound.” Geotimes, 42, 7-8, 1997.

Featured scientist: presented my global change research on Cable News Network's (CNN) “Headline News” and “Science and Technology Week” programs, broadcast November and December, 1993.

Interviewed for “The Case of the Missing Carbon,” Discover, 38-39, December, 1993.

Other

Grants & Funding

External Grants:
United States Department of Agriculture, National Research Initiative: $125, 015 for “The
impact of CO2 fertilization on soil carbon storage below a forest.” 8/01-11/04.
American Chemical Society: $30,000 for “Studies on the paleoecology of the bright angel
shale.” In collaboration with Paul Strother (Boston College). 2/00-8/02.
US Department of Energy: $32,000 for “Soil carbon dynamics in a temperate forest and its
cultivated counterpart.” In collaboration with Mac Post (Oak Ridge National Laboratory). 1/96-
1/97.
US Department of Energy: $120,000 for “The effects of changing land use on organic carbon
and nitrogen storage in mid-latitude North American soil and rice paddies.” In collaboration with
Wally Broecker (Columbia University). 9/91-9/93.


Fellowships:
National Science Foundation: $72,000 for Earth Sciences Postdoctoral Fellowship, 1995-1997.
Harrison 4
Department of Energy: $65,000 for Global Change Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship,
1993-1994.
NASA: $44,000 for Global Change Graduate Fellowship, 1991-1993.
National Center for Atmospheric Research, Advanced Study Program: $25,000 for Graduate
Research Fellowship, 1990.

Honors & Awards

Best Professor, awarded by graduate and undergraduate students in the Geology and Geophysics Department, Boston College, 2004, 2002 and 1999.

Best Course, awarded for “Environmental Geochemistry: Living Dangerously” by graduate and undergraduate students in the Geology and Geophysics Department, Boston College, 2002.

Favorite Professor, Sub Turri, the yearbook of Boston College, awarded by the Class of 1999.

Sigma Xi Honor Society, 1986 to present.

Student Collaborations

ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF HARRISON’S STUDENTS:

Student Publications (* denotes student)

Harrison, K.G., R.J. Norby, W.M. Post & E.L. Chapp*. 2004. Soil carbon accumulation in a white oak CO2 enrichment experiment via enhanced root production. Earth Interactions, 8, 1-15.

Segal*, M.G. & K.G. Harrison. 2003. Soil carbon storage in abandoned agricultural land in the Duke Forest. In Changing land use and terrestrial carbon storage, Newton, MA: Global Discovery Press, 34-53.

Harrison, K.G., M.G. Segal* & M.H. Hoskins*. 2003. Assessing the impact of tillage methods on soil carbon levels and crop yield. In Changing land use and terrestrial carbon storage, Newton, MA: Global Discovery Press, 22-33.

Mahoney*, R. J. & K.G. Harrison. 2003. Procedure for determining soil-bound organic carbon and nitrogen. In Changing land use and terrestrial carbon storage, Newton, MA: Global Discovery Press, 1-21.


External Grants Awarded to Advisees

American Association of Petroleum Geologists: Grants in Aid, “Using 15N measurements to quantify nitrogen fixation in the Duke Forest FACE site,” $1500 to Lori Weeden*, 2002.

Sigma Xi Grant in Aid of Research, “The impact of CO2 fertilization on soil carbon storage below a closed-canopy forest,” $600 to Becky Heumann*, 2001.

Geological Society of America Research Grant, “Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of carbon transferred from the atmosphere to the soil because of CO2 fertilization,” $1550 to Becky Heumann*, 2001.

American Association of Petroleum Geologists: Grants in Aid, “Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of carbon transferred from the atmosphere to the soil because of CO2 fertilization,” $1225 to Becky Heumann*, 2001.


Internal Grants Awarded to Advisees

Undergraduate Research Assistantship Awards (Boston College):
Aidan Colton*, Fall 2003
Megan Redfearn*, Spring 2003
Josh Rollins*, Spring 2001
Emily Chapp*, Fall 2000
James Murray*, Spring 2000
Adria Reimer*, Fall 1999
Matt Hoskins*, Summer 1999


Student Presentations (* denotes student)

Reimer*, A.L. 2003. Testing the silica hypothesis: Measuring how Si dissolution in seawater varies with salinity, AGU Chapman Conference, The Role of Diatom Production and Si Flux and Burial in the Regulation of Global Cycles, Paros, Greece.

Smith*, A.L. 2003. Testing the silica hypothesis: Measuring how Si dissolution in seawater varies with temperature, AGU Chapman Conference, The Role of Diatom Production and Si Flux and Burial in the Regulation of Global Cycles, Paros, Greece.

Gallagher*, A. K., P. Strother and K. G. Harrison. 2003. Reconstructing the paleoenvironment of the Bright Angel Shale, Grand Canyon, Arizona, Geological Society of America Annual Meeting and Exposition Program, Volume 35, 3, 6.

Reimer*, A.L., K. G. Harrison, & A. L. Kafka. 2002. Measuring the Transfer of Carbon from the Atmosphere to Mineral-bound Soil because of CO2 Enrichment. USDA Carbon Symposium on Natural Resource Management to Offset Greenhouse Gas Emissions. Raleigh, NC, November 19-21.

Segal*, M. G, K. G. Harrison, M. H. Hoskins, J. A. Malmstrom* & A. L. Kafka. 2002. Assessing the Impact of Land Management Techniques on Crop Yield and Soil Carbon and Nitrogen Storage. USDA Carbon Symposium on Natural Resource Management to Offset Greenhouse Gas Emissions. Raleigh, NC, November 19-21.

Weeden*, L. A., K. G. Harrison, A. L. Kafka, R. J. Heumann*. 2002. Evidence for increased soil carbon and nitrogen accumulation under CO2 enrichment. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 83, 19, S110.

Heumann*, R.J., A.L. Kafka, K.G. Harrison. 2001. Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of carbon transferred from the atmosphere to soil because of CO2 fertilization. North East Regional Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs, 33,1, p. 55 (A-85).

Haley*, B.J., K.G. Harrison, and P.K. Strother. 2001. Using δ13C to reconstruct paleoecological environments and paleoclimatic conditions of the middle Cambrian Bright Angel Shale in the Eastern Grand Canyon of Northern Arizona. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 82, 20, S76-77.

Harrison, K.G., L. Weeden*, R.J. Heumann* and A.L. Kafka*. 2001. Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of carbon transferred from the atmosphere to soil because of CO2 fertilization. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 82, 20, S77.

Heumann*, R.J., A.L. Kafka, K.G. Harrison. 2001. Using a FACE experiment to measure the amount of soil carbon and nitrogen accumulation due to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 82, 20, S92.

Hoskins*, M. and K.G. Harrison. 2000. The effect of changing land use on soil carbon storage. North East Regional Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs, 32,1.

Murray*, J. and K.G. Harrison. 2000. Ethene and propene in the marine environment. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 81,19, S276.

Grasso*, N.C., P.K. Strother, and K.G. Harrison. 1999. Effects of the evolution and expansion of the grassland biome on Miocene climate: a palynology/modeling study. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 80, 17, S184.

Grunauer*, M.A., K.G. Harrison, A.L. Kafka, D.T. Tissue and R.B. Thomas. 1998. Measuring the effect of CO2 fertilization on soil organic material beneath Loblolly pines. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 79, 17, S47.

Hensel*, T.L., K.G. Harrison, A.L. Kafka, and R.J. Norby. 1998. Measuring the effects of elevated temperature and CO2 levels on soil carbon storage. EOS, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, 79, 17, S47.


Graduate Theses
• Amy Smith, “Testing the silica hypothesis with dissolution experiments,” 2003-2004.
• Adria Reimer, “Factors influencing past and present atmospheric CO2 levels,” 2002-2004.
• Michelle Segal, “Effect of changing land use on soil carbon storage and crop yield,” 2001-2003.
• Lori Weeden, “Evidence for increased soil carbon and nitrogen accumulation under CO2 enrichment,” 2000-2002. Outstanding First-Year Student Presentation, Boston College Geology and Geophysics (BC G&G) Department Colloquium, 2001; Outstanding Student Presentation, BC G & G Department Colloquium, 2002.
• Rebecca Heumann, “Impact of CO2 fertilization on soil carbon storage below a closed-canopy forest,” 1999-2001. Nominee for Northeastern Association of Graduate Schools Master's Thesis Award, 2001-2002; Outstanding First-Year Student Presentation, BC G & G Department Colloquium, 2000; Outstanding Student Presentation, BC G & G Department Colloquium, 2001.
• Neal Grasso, “Effects of the evolution and expansion of the grassland biome on Miocene climate: A modeling/palynology study,” 1997-1999.
• M. Andrea Grunauer, “Factors influencing greenhouse gas fluxes from soil,” 1997-1999. Outstanding Student Presentation, BC G & G Department Colloquium, 1999.
• Theresa Hensel, “Measuring the effects of elevated temperatures and CO2 fertilization on soil carbon storage,” 1997-1998.


Undergraduate Theses

• Nicholas Wilbur, “Extraterrestrial cause for Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction,” 2010.
• Brian Rosato, “Why we froze,” 2010.
• Michael Ensor, “Understanding the great ocean conveyor,” 2010.
• Austin Herr, “Finding the missing sink,” 2010.
• Kay Dixon, “The effects of environmental factors on foraminiferal assemblages,” 2010.
• Adam Hudson, “Nutrient availability in roof runoff of Camp Hashawha/Bear Branch Environmental Center,” 2010.
• Ryan Graves, “Blue crab size vs salinity levels of the Chesapeake,” 2010.
• Stephen Gomez “Stopping drugs with ozone,” 2010.
• Laura Fralinger, “Decreasing McDaniel college’s environmental footprint,” 2007.
• Michelle Mullen, “CO2 fluxes from soil,” 2007.
• Bradd Haley, “Geochemical evidence for Middle Cambrian land plant colonization,” 2000-2001.
• Matt Hoskins, “Effects of cultivation techniques on soil carbon levels,” 1999-2000.
• Rebecca L. Hurley, “Social and scientific considerations of alternative energies,” 1998-1999. Awarded departmental honors and Scholar of the College.