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Climate and the Environment

Climate and the Environment

The environmental challenges facing our planet have never been more acute. SEFARI research helps to show how we can protect and restore our natural capital – our soils, biodiversity and ecosystems – and develop effective ways to manage the land and water to improve environmental condition. SEFARI works to better understand how biological, chemical and physical processes can allow us to tackle climate change, adapt to changes coming our way, and build a more resilient and well-functioning environment.

Case Studies

3 Jun 2020

Not all roots are equal – so what?

Soil is, and always will be, a very valuable resource. Soil is critical for food production and regulating several services to the wider environment, such as flood regulation and storing carbon.

7 Apr 2020

How can we safeguard biodiversity through values and governance?

Despite many initiatives to safeguard biodiversity, recent analyses and reports show that biodiversity continues to decline at the global level.

1 Apr 2020

Diversity in the Mix: The benefits of biodiversity for sustainable crop production

We are currently facing three major global challenges: climate change, biodiversity loss and the development of sustainable food production systems. Ideal solutions to these challenges would be ones that deliver win-wins, addressing at least two of these simultaneously.

6 Mar 2020

Environmental Indicators: Nature Showing Us the Bigger Picture

The Scottish Government is currently responding to a multitude of grand and complex environmental challenges, such as biodiversity loss and climate change. But how do we know if these responses, or the money spent on delivering them, are having the desired effect?

2 Mar 2020

Peatbog restoration in Scotland – How to care for Cinderella

In this project we looked at what makes people care about peatland restoration. Peatbogs are important because of their ability to store carbon, regulate water flows and provide a home for rare species of plants and animals. Nevertheless, peatbogs are often described as a hard-to-love ‘Cinderella habitat’.

22 Jan 2020

Connecting research and management needs for the Cairngorms National Park

The following case study summarises work delivered as part of a recent SEFARI Fellowship with the Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA).

10 Dec 2019

Protecting Potatoes - Scotland's Story

Since the emergence of late blight (Phytophthora infestans) in the 1840s this disease has presented a major challenge to the potato industry, with annual losses estimated to be £55 million in the UK.

27 Aug 2019

Infrared Spectroscopy – Helping to Protect Scotland’s Soils

Infrared (IR) Spectroscopy is a versatile analytical technique that can characterise a wide variety of different sample types e.g. from drugs and plastics to soil and minerals.

21 May 2019

Long-term warming of the River Spey

River temperature influences biogeochemical processes and aquatic ecology. Sustaining cool river temperatures in Scotland is essential for aquatic ecology (including the habitat and health of Atlantic salmon (Salmo Salar) and brown trout (Salmo trutta).

20 Mar 2019

Learning By Doing: Understanding and Managing for Ecological Resilience

Our natural environment is facing threats from a range of environmental drivers, including climate change, invasive non-native species, novel pests and diseases, over-exploitation, and pollution.

6 Mar 2019

Climate Change and Parasitism – Breaking the Cycle

This case study will summarise ongoing research on Teladorsagia circumcincta, one of the most common and economically important endemic parasites to control in sheep in the UK.

27 Feb 2019

Socioeconomic and biodiversity impacts of driven grouse moors in Scotland

In May 2017, the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform announced commissioning of “research into the costs and benefits of large shooting estates to Scotland’s economy and biodiversity”1. The focus of the Cabinet Secretary’s announcement was ‘driven grouse shooting’.

28 Jan 2019

Breeding to Reduce Methane Emissions from Beef Cattle

Beef production is very important for Scotland's economy (economic output of £851 million in 2017) and for providing the high quality and iconic, ‘Scotch Beef’ brand.

8 Oct 2018

Governing Scotland’s natural resources: are our policies sufficiently joined -up?

Decisions about natural resources need to balance multiple interests and goals in order to safeguard Scotland’s economic, social and environmental prosperity.   However, many existing policies for the environment focus on separate problems, such as pro

14 Aug 2018

Citizen Science: How to Investigate Pests and Diseases Under Climate Change

We have created a state-of-the-art, and free to download, desktop app to provide climate change risk assessments for crops pests and diseases in the UK that anyone can use.

24 Jul 2018

Protecting our soil and securing the way ahead

A large proportion of the Scottish strategic road network in the Highlands is vulnerable to landslides.

22 Feb 2018

Assessing the impact of tree diseases on the wider environment

Recently there has been a rapid increase in the spread and number of non-native tree pests and pathogens around the world. Traditionally the impact of tree diseases and pests has been assessed in terms of their impact on forestry and the loss of wood products.

14 Feb 2018

Maximising the Benefits of Peatland Restoration: Right Place, Right Time and Best Practice

Scotland has committed to peatland restoration as part of its array of policies to tackle climate change.

Blog

3 Jun 2020 - 15:14

SEFARI Gateway Update

In this blog, we thought we’d let you know the latest developments from SEFARI Gateway, as we continue to work together even though we are currently physically apart.

1 Jun 2020 - 15:52

Barking up the right tree

In light of both climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic, the question of food security is increasingly important.

22 May 2020 - 11:08

Sowing Wild Seeds

In these current challenging times, those of us lucky enough to have a garden, allotment or even a small amount of space in a window-box might be considering ‘growing our own’ food and wondering what we should plant. With a plethora of mail-order seeds available deciding what to grow can be challenging.