iLEAPS_OzFlux Meeting in January, 2023

It was my first time to attend an offline conference. I was very excited and enthusiastic to take this trip to Auckland, New Zealand. The iLEAPS_OzFlux gathering is a joint meeting of iLEAPS (which focuses on carbon, water, trace gas exchange, land use change, atmospheric composition as well as societal and related environmental issues) and Australia FLUXNET. It’s a conference for professionals focused on observing and predicting the earth systems.

The meeting was held at Auckland University of Technology. Many prestigious scientists gave keynote reports during this five-day conference, including Distinguished Professor Graham Farquhar and Belinda Medlyn. It’s quite a strange and exciting feeling to see Prof. Farquhar in person, as he is a founder and pioneer in this field and it’s like a living legend. And it’s quite a refreshing experience to talk with foreign researchers face-to-face. During the break, I’m quite lifted by the atmosphere of free discussion, and the enthusiasm of researchers there. I listened to many interesting talk, especially in the crossroads of ecology and geography. The conference was also a good chance to know more about FLUXNET, especially in Australia and New Zealand (you can find more information in, it is OzFlux website).

I felt honoured to give a report on the acclimation of stem respiration. This work is about the theoretical prediction of stem respiration at the global scale. Here we predict that there will also be thermal acclimation in stem respiration, while confirming it by experimental analysis. I tried to introduce this work to others, and the feedback has been quite good. As a result of my presentation, an unexpected outcome for me was that I felt more comfortable to show my results. I realized that reporting is a good way to share and exchange opinions, instead of only being judged.

Something else that left a deep impression on me was that in In New Zealand, sustainable development is deeply ingrained in the minds of people; on milk bottles, bags of laundry powder, there are marks indicating the percentage of recycled materials used. And I barely saw plastic bags or other similar products. Many researchers there focus on local environmental problems, and their research actually support government decision.

Photographed in Albert National Park near Auckland University of Technology.

Though during this trip, I met a once-in-a-century flood in Auckland, making it a difficult one, the friends I made and the precious motivation the conference instilled in me, made it well worth the trouble and just a wonderful experience I will cherish for a long time to come!


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