Emily Bernhardt

Emily Bernhardt

Jerry G. and Patricia Crawford Hubbard Professor

Primary Appointment

Biology Department

I am an ecosystem ecologist and biogeochemist whose research is principally concerned with tracking the movement of elements through ecological systems. My research aims to document the extent to which the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems is being altered by land use change (urbanization, agriculture, mining) global change (rising CO2, rising sea levels) and chemical pollution. Ultimately this information is necessary to determine whether and how ecosystem change can be mitigated or prevented through active ecosystem management.

In The News


Gerson, JR, Driscoll, CT, Hsu-Kim, H, and Bernhardt, ES. "Senegalese artisanal gold mining leads to elevated total mercury and methylmercury concentrations in soils, sediments, and rivers." ELEMENTA-SCIENCE OF THE ANTHROPOCENE 6 (January 31, 2018).
Eagle, AJ, Olander, LP, Locklier, KL, Heffernan, JB, and Bernhardt, ES. "Fertilizer management and environmental factors drive n2o and no3losses in corn: A meta-analysis." Soil Science Society of America Journal 81, no. 5 (September 1, 2017): 1191-1202.
Nippgen, F, Ross, MRV, Bernhardt, ES, and McGlynn, BL. "Creating a More Perennial Problem? Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining Enhances and Sustains Saline Baseflows of Appalachian Watersheds." Environmental science & technology 51, no. 15 (August 2017): 8324-8334.
Voss, KA, and Bernhardt, ES. "Effects of mountaintop removal coal mining on the diversity and secondary productivity of Appalachian rivers." Limnology and Oceanography 62, no. 4 (July 2017): 1754-1770.
Arnold, M, Bier, R, Lindberg, T, Bernhardt, E, and Di Giulio, R. "Biofilm mediated uptake of selenium in streams with mountaintop coal mine drainage." Limnologica - Ecology and Management of Inland Waters 65 (July 2017): 10-13.

Recent Grants


BIOLOGY 564: Biogeochemistry (BIOLOGY 564: Biogeochemistry)
BIOLOGY 361LS: Field Ecology (BIOLOGY 361LS: Field Ecology)
EVANTH 741: Ecological Perspectives: Evolution to Ecosystems (EVANTH 741: Ecological Perspectives: Evolution to Ecosystems)
ENVIRON 361LS: Field Ecology (ENVIRON 361LS: Field Ecology)
BIOLOGY 209D-2: Ecology for a Crowded Planet (BIOLOGY 209D-2: Ecology for a Crowded Planet)

Contact Information

Ffsc 3313
Durham, NC 27708
Box 90338
Durham, NC 27708-0000


Ph.D., Cornell University (2001)
B.S., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1996)