Dr. Fabian Stenzel

Postdoctoral Researcher


  • Global risks of biosphere degradation
  • Planetary Boundaries
  • Water demand for bioenergy plantations
  • Water stress
  • Negative emissions
  • Land use change


  • LPJmL
  • POEM

How to find me on Telegraphenberg


Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)
T +49 (0)331 288 2574
P.O. Box 60 12 03
14412 Potsdam


In my PhD I have investigated potentials and potential side effects of terrestrial negative emission technologies, with a focus on the water demand of bioenergy plantations.

Together with the Global Challenges Foundation and the Earth Commission I will now continue to look at global risks that arise from degradation of the biosphere.

One key concept for me are the planetary boundaries as a way of quantifying the status of several important dimensions of the Earth System.

Stenzel, F., Braun, J., Breier, J., Erb, K., Gerten, D., Heinke, J., Matej, S., Ostberg, S., Schaphoff, S., and Lucht, W.: biospheremetrics v1.0.2: An R package to calculate two complementary terrestrial biosphere integrity indicators: human colonization of the biosphere (BioCol) and risk of ecosystem destabilization (EcoRisk), Geoscientific Model Development, 2024, 17, 3235-3258, https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-17-3235-2024

Keys, P. W.; Wang-Erlandsson, L.; Moore, M.-L.; Pranindita, A.; Stenzel, F.; Varis, O.; Warrier, R.; Wong, R. B.; D’Odorico, P. & Folke, C.
The dry sky: future scenarios for humanity’s modification of the atmospheric water cycle
Global Sustainability, 2024, 7, e11, https://doi.org/10.1017/sus.2024.9

Wirth, S. B.; Braun, J.; Heinke, J.; Ostberg, S.; Rolinski, S.; Schaphoff, S.; Stenzel, F.; von Bloh, W. & Müller, C.
Biological nitrogen fixation of natural and agricultural vegetation simulated with LPJmL 5.7.9
EGUsphere, Copernicus GmbH, 2024, 1-29, preprint: https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2023-2946

Rueda, O.; Mogollón, J. M.; Stenzel, F.; Tukker, A. & Scherer, L.
A protein transition can free up land to tap vast energy and negative emission potentials
One Earth, Elsevier, 2024, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.oneear.2023.12.016

Nyasulu, M. K.; Fetzer, I.; Wang-Erlandsson, L.; Stenzel, F.; Gerten, D.; Rockström, J. & Falkenmark, M.: African rainforest moisture contribution to continental agricultural water consumption, Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 2024, 346, 109867, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.agrformet.2023.109867

Wagner, S.; Stenzel, F.; Krüger, T. & de Wiljes, J.: Drivers of global irrigation expansion: the role of discrete global grid choice, Hydrology and Earth System Sciences Discussions, Copernicus GmbH, 2023, 1-35 [preprint],

Breier, J.; Ostberg, S.; Wirth, S. B.; Minoli, S.; Stenzel, F. & Müller, C.
lpjmlkit: A toolkit for operating LPJmL and model-specific data processing, JOSS [preprint],
2023, https://joss.theoj.org/papers/19419cb26456cff5450b6e3de0f90d11

Beier, F. D.; Bodirsky, B. L.; Heinke, J.; Karstens, K.; Dietrich, J. P.; Müller, C.; Stenzel, F.; von Jeetze, P.; Popp, A. & Lotze-Campen, H.: Technical and Economic Irrigation Potentials within land and water boundaries 
Water Resources Research, (2023). https://doi.org/10.1029/2021WR031924

Gerten, D., Stenzel, F. 2023: Contributing Authors to Ingemarsson, M.L., Weinberg, J., Rudebeck, T., Wang-Erlandsson, L (Eds.): The Essential Drop to Reach Net-Zero: Unpacking Freshwater's Role in Climate Change Mitigation. SIWI, PIK, UNDP & GIZ GmbH.

Braun, J., Stenzel, F., Bodirsky, B., Jalava, M., & Gerten, D.: Dietary changes could compensate for potential yield reductions upon global river flow protection. Global Sustainability, 1-27 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1017/sus.2022.12

Stenzel, F., Dissertation: The implications of large-scale irrigated bioenergy plantations for future water use and water stress, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Mathematisch-Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät, 2021. https://doi.org/10.18452/23396

Stenzel, F., Greve, P., Lucht, W., Tramberend, S., Wada, Y., Gerten, D.: Irrigation of biomass plantations may globally increase water stress more than climate change. Nat Commun 12, 1512 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-21640-3

Stenzel, F., Gerten, D., and Hanasaki, N.: Global scenarios of irrigation water use for bioenergy production: a systematic review, Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 2021, 25, 1711-1726. https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-25-1711-2021

Stenzel, F., Gerten, D., Werner, C., Jägermeyr, J. 2019: Freshwater requirements of large-scale bioenergy plantations for limiting global warming to 1.5 °C. Environ. Res. Lett. 14, 084001. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/ab2b4b

ReForMit - Understanding and securing the resilience of forest-based climate change mitigation

GCF - New Governance Architecture for Adressing Global Systematic Risks

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IKI-IMPACT-RD1 - Climate change impacts on Small Island States and Least Developed Countries

CE-LAND+ - Global freshwater demand for irrigation of bioenergy plantations as negative emission technology to mitigate climate change

since 2022 Introduction to the Earth System: The Terrestrial Biosphere, Lecture|Seminar|Exercise,
University Potsdam - International Master Program: Climate, Earth, Water, Sustainability.

2021 Climate Change Land & Water Interactions, Seminar, Potsdam Summer School.

2020 Modeling of Earth system processes, 5-day block course, University Potsdam - Geoecology.

2018 Global aspects of socio-hydrologic modeling - Q-team, Grant application, concept design
and mentoring of semester student projects, bologna lab/Geography dept. HU Berlin.

since 2018 Co-supervision/Mentoring of several Bachelor and Master thesis projects, together
with Prof. Dr. Dieter Gerten and Prof. Dr. Tobias Krüger.

Live interview in hr "alle wetter!" about safe and just Earth system boundaries as an extension to Planetary Boundaries



Podcast Interview about Climate Tipping Points, Planetary Boundaries and Negative Emissions


Podcast Interview about recent paper: Irrigated biomass plantations might exert more water stress than climate change


Fact checker for the first German citizen’s assembly on climate change


Date an expert, Scientific Speeddating, Naturkundemuseum Berlin