- Assistant Professor, Dept. of Forestry and Environmental Resources
Melissa McHale is an Assistant Professor of Urban Ecology in the Department of Environmental Resources at North Carolina State University. Melissa worked as a community forestry research and education consultant for five years before pursuing a PhD in Ecology from Colorado State University. In Colorado, she focused her studies on carbon storage in urban forests. After completing her degree, she served as a post-doctoral researcher for the Central Arizona-Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research site, analyzing citywide carbon budgets and the ecosystem services provided by residential landscapes. Her most recent professional activities are motivated by her interest in carbon and nutrient cycling, social drivers of ecological processes, and the spatial and temporal dynamics associated with urbanization. Melissa’s research and teaching programs are focused on policy-driven and multi-disciplinary approaches to urban ecological analyses.
McHale, M. R., S. M. Beck, S. T. Pickett, D. L. Childers, M. L. Cadenasso, L. Rivers III, L. Swemmer, L. Ebersohn, W. Twine and D. N. Bunn. 2018. Democratization of ecosystem services—a radical approach for assessing nature’s benefits in the face of urbanization. Ecosystem Health and Sustainability 4(5):114-131. DOI: 10.1080/20964129.2018.1480905. (link )
McHale, M. R., S. J. Hall, A. Majumdar and N. B. Grimm. 2017. Carbon lost and carbon gained: A study of vegetation and carbon tradeoffs among diverse land uses in Phoenix, AZ. Ecological Applications 27(2):644–661. DOI: 10.1002/eap.1472. (link )
Jenerette, G. D., L. W. Clarke, M. L. Avolio, D. E. Pataki, T. W. Gillespie, S. Pincetl, D. J. Nowak, L. R. Hutyra, M. R. McHale, J. P. McFadden and M. Alonzo. 2016. Climate tolerances and trait choices shape continental patterns of urban tree diversity. Global Ecology and Biogeography 25(11):1367-1376 . DOI: 10.1111/geb.12499. (link )
McHale, M. R., S. T. Pickett, O. Barbosa, D. N. Bunn, M. L. Cadenasso, D. L. Childers, M. Gartin, G. R. Hess, D. M. Iwaniec, P. T. McPhearson, M. N. Peterson, A. K. Poole, L. Rivers III, S. T. Shutters and W. Zhou. 2015. The new global urban realm: Complex, connected, diffuse, and diverse social-ecological systems. Sustainability 7(5):5211-5240. DOI: 10.3390/su7055211. (link )
Schwarz, K., M. Fragkias, C. G. Boone, W. Zhou, M. McHale, J. M. Grove, J. O'Neil-Dunne, J. P. McFadden, G. L. Buckley, D. Childers, L. Ogden, S. Pincetl, D. Pataki, A. Whitmer and M. L. Cadenasso. 2015. Trees grow on money: Urban tree canopy cover and environmental justice. PLOS One 10(4):e0122051. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0122051. (link )
Pickett, S. T., C. G. Boone, B. P. McGrath, M. L. Cadenasso, D. L. Childers, L. A. Ogden, M. R. McHale and J. M. Grove. 2013. Ecological science and transformation to the sustainable city. Cities 32(Supplement 1):510-520. DOI: 10.1016/j.cities.2013.02.008. (link )
Zhang, C., J. Wu, N. B. Grimm, M. R. McHale and A. Buyantuyev. 2013. A hierarchical patch mosaic ecosystem model for urban landscapes: Model development and evaluation. Ecological Modelling 250:81-100. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2012.09.020. (link )
Larson, E. K., S. R. Earl, E. Hagen, R. L. Hale, H. E. Hartnett, M. L. McCrackin, M. R. McHale and N. B. Grimm. 2013. Beyond restoration and into design: Hydrologic alterations in aridland cities. Pp. 183-210 In: Pickett, S. T., M. L. Cadenasso, B. McGrath and K. Hill eds., Resilience in Ecology and Urban Design: Linking Theory and Practice for Sustainable Cities. Vol 3. Springer.
Zhang, C., N. B. Grimm, J. Wu, M. R. McHale, Y. Ouyang and X. Dong. 2011. Modeling the structure and functions of human-dominated terrestrial ecosystems with a hierarchical patch dynamics approach. Tempe, AZ. Poster presented at the 12-13 January 2011 CAP LTER 13th Annual Poster Symposium and All Scientist Meeting, Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University. (link )
Larson, E. K., S. R. Earl, E. Hagen, R. L. Hale, H. E. Hartnett, M. L. McCrackin, M. R. McHale and N. B. Grimm. 2009. Arid urban aquatic ecosystems: A case study of ecology, design and restoration in the Central Arizona-Phoenix LTER. Poster presented September 13-17 at the Long Term Ecological Research-All Scientists Meeting, Estes Park, CO.
Larson, E. K., S. R. Earl, E. Hagen, R. L. Hale, H. E. Hartnett, M. L. McCrackin, M. R. McHale and N. B. Grimm. 2009. Arid urban aquatic ecosystems: A case study of ecology, design, and restoration in the Central Arizona-Phoenix LTER. Poster presented at 14-16 September 2009 LTER All Scientist Meeting, Integrating Science and Society in a World of Constant Change, Estes Park, CO.
Martin, C. A., D. G. Casagrande, S. T. Yabiku, M. R. McHale and S. R. Earl. 2009. Evaluation of four ecosystems services provided by experimental residential neighborhood landscapes in Mesa, Arizona. Estes Park, CO. Poster presented at 14-16 September 20009 LTER All Scientists Meeting, Integrating Science and Society in a World of Constant Change.
McHale, M. R., L. R. Baker, B. A. Koerner and N. B. Grimm. 2009. Developing carbon budgets for cities: Phoenix metropolitan region as a case study. Tempe, AZ. Poster presented at 11th Annual Central Arizona-Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research (CAP LTER) Poster Symposium, January 15, 2009, Global Institute of Sustainability. (link )
McHale, M. R., N. B. Grimm and L. A. Baker. 2008. Developing carbon budgets for cities: Phoenix metropolitan region as a case study. Poster presented at the August 3-8, 2008 93rd Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America, Milwaukee, WI.
McHale, M. R., D. L. Childers, S. T. Pickett, M. L. Cadenasso, S. Beck, D. N. Bunn, L. Ebersohn, W. Twine and L. Swemmer. 2017. Human diversity and urbanization in South Africa: Democratizing ecosystem service assessments for sustainable development. Presentation at the Annual Meeting Portland ESA 2017, August 6-11, 2017, Portland, OR. (link )
McHale, M. R., A. Majumdar and N. B. Grimm. 2014. Carbon Lost vs. carbon gained: A study of carbon tradeoffs among land uses in Phoenix, AZ, reveals the inadequacy of statistical spatial scaling techniques and the need for new methodologies for understanding carbon dynamics across cities. Presentation at the From Oceans to Mountains, 99th Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting, 10-15 August 2014, Sacramento, California. (link )
Grimm, N. B., E. Cook, S. R. Earl, R. L. Hale, S. J. Hall, H. E. Hartnett, D. M. Iwaniec, E. K. Larson, M. R. McHale and R. A. Sponseller. 2009. Ecosystem biogeochemical function and services in an urbanizing desert region. Presentation December 14-18 at the 2009 Annual Meeting of the American Geophysical Union, San Francisco, CA.
McHale, M. R., N. B. Grimm, L. A. Baker, B. A. Koerner, K. Li and S. J. Hall. 2009. Impacts of urbanization on regional and global carbon cycling: A complete carbon budget of Phoenix metropolitan region as a case study. Presentation at the August 2-7, 2009 94th Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America, Albuquerque, NM.