Stockholm university
Gå till denna sida på svenska webben

Environmental Biogeochemistry

Biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorous and other elements are fundamental for life on Earth. These biogeochemical cycles have been altered by human activities, resulting in environmental challenges such as global warming, eutrophication, or heavy metal pollution.

Fundamental understanding of the biogeochemical cycles, and how they are coupled, is vital in order to both understand and mitigate the consequences of human perturbations. We will in this course explore different biogeochemical cycles, focusing on terrestrial and aquatic systems, and discuss how they interact and are linked to human activities.

Topics included:

  • Overview of the foundations of biogeochemical cycles (e.g., redox chemistry, energy metabolism)
  • Biogeochemical cycles of different elements such as carbon, macro- and micronutrients and heavy metals in soil, inland and ocean waters, sediments and the lower atmosphere
  • Interactions between biogeochemical cycles of different elements and their implications
  • Key anthropogenic environmental perturbations and their interactions with biogeochemical cycles
  • Effects of natural processes and perturbations on the fate and bioavailability of pollutants
  • Introduction to isotopes – key tools to study biogeochemical cycles
  • Course structure

    Teaching format

    The course includes lectures as well as exercises and seminar workshops where the students take an active role in e.g. scientific literature review and classroom discussions. Participation in exercises and seminars is compulsory.


    Assessment takes place through a written exam.


    Rights and responsibilities
    Your rights and responsibilities as a student


    Sofi Jonsson

  • Schedule

    The schedule will be available no later than one month before the start of the course. We do not recommend print-outs as changes can occur. At the start of the course, your department will advise where you can find your schedule during the course.
  • Course literature

    Note that the course literature can be changed up to two months before the start of the course.

    Scientific literature will be provided during the course.

  • Course reports

  • Contact

    Student counsellor

    Course coordinator

    For 2024 Sofi Jonsson,
    For 2025 Birgit Wild,
    Department of Environmental Science, Biogeochemistry Unit