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Strategic planning for science infrastructures

While each UKCEH science infrastructure has its own particular scientific purpose and capabilities, our whole portfolio is strategically planned and managed to enable integrated research across the whole land-based environment.  

Our science infrastructures are designed individually and collectively to provide comprehensive environmental measurements in order to:

  • Address the most important UK and global strategic goals and challenges.
  • Reveal and predict environmental processes, interconnections, status and change across all scales: from local field or city to landscape to national scale.
  • Study the whole UK environmental system, encompassing different land use and habitat types: land, soil, water and air; uplands and lowlands; urban and rural; agriculture and woodland; and so on. 
  • Provide broad-scale coverage of the UK and its landscapes as whole systems.
  • Provide intensive, in-depth measurement of specific environmental systems, habitats and land-uses.

The science and policy context

UKCEH science infrastructures equip us to provide solutions to the climate and biodiversity emergencies, which take account of economic, social and environmental sustainability.

Climate change

UKCEH science infrastructures are designed to inform solutions to the climate challenge on two fronts:

  • Mitigation: To tackle climate warming by measuring and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions generated by human activity to net zero.
  • Resilience: To adapt and build resilience to natural hazards such as floods, droughts and extreme weather events, which are predicted to increase in frequency and become more severe in future as our climate changes. 

Clean growth

UKCEH science and infrastructures are designed to inform solutions that sustain natural capital for clean growth and health. In particular:

  • Pollution: To deliver clean air, water, soils, food and public health by preventing or managing pollution; by supporting the development of sustainable and safe products; and by reducing the consumption and waste of natural resources.
  • Sustainable ecosystems; biodiversity net gain: To develop land use and economic practices that promote and restore biodiversity and ecosystem function, whilst also reducing the impact of invasive species and diseases.

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