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Conservation Research Institute



Sacha is a PhD student in the Coomes Lab, Department of Plant Sciences, and is a member of Churchill College, Cambridge. Before moving to England, Sacha graduated from the University of Tuscia, Italy, with honours in Forestry and Environmental Science, after following an Erasmus Mundus Master programme on Mediterranean Forestry and Natural Resources Management. She became interested in natural resources management and plant sciences as an undergraduate in Biology and Biochemistry at Saint Joseph University, Lebanon.


Sacha is interested in how climate change is affecting Mediterranean forests. She is working on determining Mediterranean forest resilience to drought from space. The first part of her work consists in using the latest cloud-computing infrastructure provided by Google Earth Engine to analyse time series of remote sensing data collected by a NASA satellite constellation. Following that, she is working on linking those satellite determined resiliences to ground measurements from the Spanish national forest inventory and other datasets collected over Spain, including sap flow measurements and high spatial resolution hyperspectral imaging. Her work aims to determine how well we can monitor forest water use using satellite imagery in face of increasing drought severity and frequency in the Mediterranean basin. A validated remote sensing method would provide a valuable alternative to expensive, intensive ground-based measurements.


Key publications: 

Resilience of Spanish forests to recent droughts and climate change. Khoury and Coomes, Global Change Biology, 2020

Harfouche, A., Khoury, S., Fabbrini, F., & Mugnozza, G. S. (2014). Forest biotechnology advances to support global bioeconomy. Annals of Silvicultural Research, 38(2), 42–50.

PhD Student


Departments and institutes: