Global Change, Natural Resources and Sustainability

We are addressing the intersecting challenges of climate change, environmental degradation and sustainable resource provision.  Highlights include:

  • Understanding the oceans. Samples and observations from Bristol-led research cruises have yielded critical insights into changes in oceanic nutrient and carbon cycling, includinginteractions with the cryosphere and seafloor boundaries and the first observations of microplastics in deep sea organisms.
  • New Technology for Sustainable Energy Infrastructure.Through partnerships and technological innovation in applied geophysics, we have made impact via microseismic monitoring of energy (nuclear and gas) infrastructure, including critical contributions to the policy debate on hydraulic fracturing, and monitoring and regulation protocols for the UK fracking industry. 
  • Building industry partnerships to deliver crucial metal resources. Large amounts of metals, and especially copper, are required to deliver a low-carbon future. We are applying our fundamental expertise in crustal magmatism to the development of porphyry copper deposits (from which 75% of the world’s copper is derived).

Our research ambitions are towards the sustainable extraction of critical metals, carbon capture and sequestration, resilient energy infrastructure and water and soil resources. This work will be conducted within an interdisciplinary context that recognises social justice, land rights and equity in collaboration with Social Sciences and Environmental Humanities colleagues.

This theme involves collaboration between all the School’s Research Groups: Geochemistry, Geophysics, Palaeobiology, Petrology, Marine and Terrestrial Environments, and Volcanology.

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