Disputation: Lorenzo Pin

PhD candidate Lorenzo Pin at the Department of Biosciences will be defending the thesis "How hydropower induced changes in temperature, quality and quantity of water influences structure and functioning of riverine biofilms" for the degree of PhD.

Profile picture of Lorenzo Pin

Lorenzo Pin. Photo: private.

The trial lecture is: "Effects of climate change on stream ecosystems".

Time and place: April 28, 2022 10:15 AM, Nucleus, Bikuben, The Kristine Bonnevie building.

Main research findings

Flow alterations due to damming and hydropower developments are likely to have significant effects on the prokaryotic community structure and functioning. At a global scale we are witnessing an increasing trend in hydropower development, often regarded as the most important among the “green” energy sources. However, hydroelectric energy comes at a cost. In Norway, 2/3rds of the rivers impounded for hydropower purposes are affected by hydro-morphological alterations, with quantity, timing, and variability of water flow far from natural flow regimes.

There is still a research gap concerning the effects of alterations to the natural flow regime at the base of the riverine food webs, especially regarding microbial communities, which are a black box in terms of consequences on the ecology of river systems.

In this thesis Pin and colleagues analyzed the effects of flow alterations on the prokaryotic community structure by using quantitative and qualitative molecular techniques coupled with assessments of functional processes such as organic matter decomposition. River ecosystems and mesocosms were used to inspect different flow regimes scenarios and determine the main drivers shaping microbial communities. In addition, new methodologies to identify bioindicators among prokaryotes are proposed as complementary tools for environmental impact assessment in the existing biomonitoring networks.

Adjudication committee

Associate Professor Anna Maria Romani Cornet, University of Girona

Researcher Hannes Markus Peter, EPFL (École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne)

Associate Professor Bastiaan Star, University of Oslo

Chair of defence

Researcher Joël Durant, University of Oslo


Dr. Nikolai Friberg, NIVA

Professor Alexander Eiler, University of Oslo

Professor Leif Asbjørn Vøllestad, University of Oslo

Dr. Therese Fosholt Moe, Handelens Miljøfond

Published Apr. 14, 2022 9:39 AM - Last modified Apr. 26, 2022 12:06 PM