Fernando Jaramillo Bolin

Fernando Jaramillo

Biträdande lektor

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Works at Department of Physical Geography
Telephone 08-16 47 71
Visiting address Svante Arrhenius väg 8
Room V 310
Postal address Inst för naturgeografi 106 91 Stockholm

About me

Fernando Jaramillo holds a Ph.D. in Physical Geography from Stockholm University with focus in hydrology and freshwater resources. He studies the historical effects of both climate change and land and water use on freshwater availability and changes, from local to global scales. His main areas of research are hydroclimatic change via de Budyko framework, human water consumption, hydrogeodesy via InSAR and human impact on wetlands.


Teaching activities (selected)

2018–To date           Course Responsible to GE8009- “Land and Water Risk Assessment”, SU, Sweden

2019–To date           Course Responsible to GE8024- “Advance Hydrology”

2017–To date           Lecturer to GE7025- “Global Water Vulnerability and Resilience”

Supervising experience

Main Ph.D. Supervisor. Luigi Piemontese (2016), Saeed Aminjafari (2019).


Fernando Jaramillo is a civil engineer that has worked in the coal-mining sector and environmental consultancy in his home country Colombia. After a 180-degree turn in life, he decided to start a venturing quest into hydrologic and water resources research. He holds a MSc in Civil Engineering (McGill University) and a PhD in Physical Geography (Stockholm University), the latter obtained in 2015 and focused in hydrology and water resources. He has attributed and quantified historical human impacts on water resources and hydroclimate at the global scales from activities such as rain-fed and irrigated agriculture, forestry and flow regulation by dams.

After finishing his PhD, he became a temporary postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, University of Gothenburg to study the interaction between forest development and hydroclimate in Northern regions.

He is now Associate Professor and Docent at the Physical Geography Department and Stockholm Resilience Centre, Stockholm University. He completed a one-year research visit at the Geodesy Lab of the Earth and Environment Department & Economics Department at Florida International University, Miami, U.S.A., where he studied the application of remote sensing technologies, such as InSAR for assessment of hydroclimatic change and water resources.

He is performing research in the following projects:

  • Global hydroclimatic change and how it affects the partitioning of water on land, via de Budyko framwork
  • Quantification of change in human freshwater consumption during the last century, with implications of this consumption for sustainability and the transgression of the freshwater planetary boundary
  • Impact of human development on tropical wetlands
  • Hydrogeodesy, understanding water movement in tropical and Baltic water resources by menas of InSAR (INterferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar)

To date, he has reviewed scientific articles for 31 peer-reviewed journals. He also has made important scientific outreach efforts to explain the current pressure on global water resources through interviews with important media channels such as BBC, Washington Post, Smithsonian, among others.


  • Hydrogeodesy to study large deltaic hydrodynamics. Funder: Stiftelsen för internationalisering av högre utbildning och forskning (STINT)
  • Untangling human freshwater consumption from impounded water reservoirs with hydroclimatic observations and space-based hydrology”. Funder:  Swedish Research Council (VR)
  • Adding green to blue: An integral update to freshwater consumption estimates worldwide. Funder: The Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning (FORMAS).
  • Hydrogeodesic assessment of man-made disconnections between Northern Rivers and their coastal systems. Funder: Swedish National Space Agency

Recent publications:


26.     Rivera-Monroy, V.H., Elliton, C., Narra, S., Meselhe, E., Zhao, X., White, E., Sasser, C.E., Visser, J.M., Meng, X., Wang, H., Xue, Z., Jaramillo, F., 2019. Wetland Biomass and Productivity in Coastal Louisiana: Base Line Data (1976–2015) and Knowledge Gaps for the Development of Spatially Explicit Models for Ecosystem Restoration and Rehabilitation Initiatives. Water 11, 2054, 2019.

25.     Piemontese, L., Fetzer, I., Rockström, J. and Jaramillo, F. Future Hydroclimatic Impacts on Africa: Beyond the Paris Agreement. Earth’s Future 7, 748–761, 2019.

24.    Palomino-Ángel, S., Anaya-Acevedo, J.A., Simard, M., Liao, T.-H., Jaramillo, F., 2019. Analysis of Floodplain Dynamics in the Atrato River Colombia Using SAR Interferometry. Water 11(5), 875, 2019.

23.    Jaramillo, F., Desormeaux, A., Hedlund, J., Jawitz, J. W., Clerici, N., Piemontese, L., Rodríguez-Rodriguez, J. A., Anaya, J. A., Blanco-Libreros, J. F., Borja, S., Celi, J., Chalov, S., Chun, K. P., Cresso, M., Destouni, G., Dessu, S. B., Di Baldassarre, G., Downing, A., Espinosa, L., Ghajarnia, N., Girard, P., Gutiérrez, Á. G., Hansen, A., Hu, T., Jarsjö, J., Kalantary, Z., Labbaci, A., Licero-Villanueva, L., Livsey, J., Machotka, E., McCurley, K., Palomino-Ángel, S., Pietron, J., Price, R., Ramchunder, S. J., Ricaurte-Villota, C., Ricaurte, L. F., Dahir, L., Rodríguez, E., Salgado, J., Sannel, A. B. K., Santos, A. C., Seifollahi-Aghmiuni, S., Sjöberg, Y., Sun, L., Thorslund, J., Vigouroux, G., Wang-Erlandsson, L., Xu, D., Zamora, D., Ziegler, A. D. and Åhlén, I.: Priorities and Interactions of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with Focus on Wetlands, Water, 11(3), 619, 2019.

22.    Jaramillo, F., L. Licero, I. Åhlen, S. Manzoni, J.A. Rodríguez-Rodríguez, A. Guittard, A. Hylin, J. Bolaños, J. Jawitz, S. Wdowinski, O. Martínez, L.F. Espinosa. Effects of hydroclimatic change and rehabilitation activities on salinity and mangrove recovery in the Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta, Colombia. Wetlands, 1–13, 2018.

21.    Mills, G., Sharps, K., Simpson, D., Pleijel, H., Broberg, M., Uddling, J., Jaramillo, F., et al. Ozone pollution will compromise efforts to increase global wheat production. Global Change Biology, 24(8), 3560–3574, 2018.

20.     Jaramillo, F., Brown, I., Castellazzi, P., Espinosa, L. F., Guittard, A., Hong, S.-H., Rivera-Monroy, V. H. and Wdowinski, S.: Assessment of hydrologic connectivity in an ungauged wetland with InSAR observations, Environ. Res. Lett., 13(2), 2018.


A selection from Stockholm University publication database
  • 2018. Fernando Jaramillo (et al.). Environmental Research Letters 13 (2)

    The Cienaga Grande de Santa Marta (CGSM) is one of the world's most productive tropical wetlands and one that has witnessed some of the greatest recorded dieback of mangroves. Human-driven loss of hydrologic connectivity by roads, artificial channels and water flow regulation appears to be the reason behind mangrove mortality in this ungauged wetland. In this study, we determined the CGSM's current state of hydrologic connectivity by combining a remote sensing technique, termed as Wetland Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR), with a hydrologic study of river water discharge. For this research, we processed 29 ALOS-PALSAR acquisitions taken during the period 2007-2011 and generated 66 interferograms that provide information on relative surface water level changes. We found that change in water discharge upstream on the main tributary of the CGSM could explain at most 17% of the variance of the change in water level in the CGSM. Fresh water inputs into the wetland were identified only when the mean daily water discharge in the river exceeded 700m(3) s(-1), which corresponds to only 30% of the days during the period. The interferogram analysis also revealed that artificial channels within the wetland serve as barriers to water flow and contribute to the overall loss in hydrologic connectivity. We recommend increasing fresh water inputs from the Magdalena River by reducing water regulation of fresh water from the river and improving connectivity on either side of the artificial channels crossing the CGSM. This study emphasizes the potential of the application of wetland InSAR to determine hydrologic connectivity in wetlands that are completely or poorly ungauged and to define the necessary guidelines for wetland hydrologic restoration.

  • 2018. Fernando Jaramillo (et al.). Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 22 (1), 567-580

    During the last 6 decades, forest biomass has increased in Sweden mainly due to forest management, with a possible increasing effect on evapotranspiration. However, increasing global CO2 concentrations may also trigger physiological water-saving responses in broadleaf tree species, and to a lesser degree in some needleleaf conifer species, inducing an opposite effect. Additionally, changes in other forest attributes may also affect evapotranspiration. In this study, we aimed to detect the dominating effect(s) of forest change on evapotranspiration by studying changes in the ratio of actual evapotranspiration to precipitation, known as the evaporative ratio, during the period 1961-2012. We first used the Budyko framework of water and energy availability at the basin scale to study the hydroclimatic movements in Budyko space of 65 temperate and boreal basins during this period. We found that movements in Budyko space could not be explained by climatic changes in precipitation and potential evapotranspiration in 60% of these basins, suggesting the existence of other dominant drivers of hydroclimatic change. In both the temperate and boreal basin groups studied, a negative climatic effect on the evaporative ratio was counteracted by a positive residual effect. The positive residual effect occurred along with increasing standing forest biomass in the temperate and boreal basin groups, increasing forest cover in the temperate basin group and no apparent changes in forest species composition in any group. From the three forest attributes, standing forest biomass was the one that could explain most of the variance of the residual effect in both basin groups. These results further suggest that the water-saving response to increasing CO2 in these forests is either negligible or overridden by the opposite effect of the increasing forest biomass. Thus, we conclude that increasing standing forest biomass is the dominant driver of long-term and large-scale evapotranspiration changes in Swedish forests.

  • 2015. Fernando Jaramillo, Georgia Destouni. Science 350 (6265), 1248-1251

    Flow regulation and irrigation alter local freshwater conditions, but their global effects are highly uncertain. We investigated these global effects from 1901 to 2008, using hydroclimatic observations in 100 large hydrological basins. Globally, we find consistent and dominant effects of increasing relative evapotranspiration from both activities, and decreasing temporal runoff variability from flow regulation. The evapotranspiration effect increases the long-term average human consumption of fresh water by 3563 +/- 979 km(3)/year from 1901-1954 to 1955-2008. This increase raises a recent estimate of the current global water footprint of humanity by around 18%, to 10,688 +/- 979 km(3)/year. The results highlight the global impact of local water-use activities and call for their relevant account in Earth system modeling.

  • 2015. Fernando Jaramillo, Georgia Destouni. Science 348 (6240), 1217

    Steffen et al. (Research Articles, 13 February 2015, p. 736) recently assessed current global freshwater use, finding it to be well below a corresponding planetary boundary. However, they ignored recent scientific advances implying that the global consumptive use of freshwater may have already crossed the associated planetary boundary.

  • 2017. Bruce M. Campbell (et al.). Ecology & society 22 (4)

    We explore the role of agriculture in destabilizing the Earth system at the planetary scale, through examining nine planetary boundaries, or safe limits: land-system change, freshwater use, biogeochemical flows, biosphere integrity, climate change, ocean acidification, stratospheric ozone depletion, atmospheric aerosol loading, and introduction of novel entities. Two planetary boundaries have been fully transgressed, i.e., are at high risk, biosphere integrity and biogeochemical flows, and agriculture has been the major driver of the transgression. Three are in a zone of uncertainty i.e., at increasing risk, with agriculture the major driver of two of those, land-system change and freshwater use, and a significant contributor to the third, climate change. Agriculture is also a significant or major contributor to change for many of those planetary boundaries still in the safe zone. To reduce the role of agriculture in transgressing planetary boundaries, many interventions will be needed, including those in broader food systems.

Show all publications by Fernando Jaramillo at Stockholm University

Last updated: October 11, 2019

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