Since 1986 the work of Prof. Sutton has focused primarily on the emission, behavior and fate of ammonia in the atmosphere. His work spans a wide range of disciplines from micrometeorology and atmospheric chemistry to plant ecology and policy analysis. The largest aspect of the work has concerned the measurement of ammonia biosphere-atmosphere exchange with terrestrial ecosystems, resulting in new conceptual and quantitative models. Prof. Sutton has developed a suite of tools to quantify the impacts of ammonia over the UK for Defra and other government organisations, including the ‘FRAME’, ‘SCAIL’ and ‘EMEP4UK’ models, and the National Ammonia Monitoring Network.
Prof. Sutton has led a series of key national and international collaborative projects on ammonia. In the 1990s he was the coordinator of the European Commission projects: EXAMINE (EXchange of AMmonia IN European ecosystems; 8 institutes) and GRAMINAE (GRassland AMmonia INteractions Across Europe, 8 institutes). His involvement in the latter led to him being appointed Executive Secretary of the European Commission “Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Initiative (TERI)”.
In recent years, Prof. Sutton has focused on developing the links between ammonia and other nitrogen compounds in the environment. He coordinated the LANAS (Landscape Analysis of Nitrogen and Abatement Strategies) project of the NERC GANE programme and coordinated the NitroEurope Integrated Project, 2006-2011 (€28M, 64 partner institutes) addressing the net effect of nitrogen on the European greenhouse gas balance. In developing the European platform established by NitroEurope, Prof Sutton led the first European Nitrogen Assessment, under the European Science Foundation NinE (Nitrogen in Europe), published by Cambridge University Press in April 2011.
He is chair of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI), a joint project of the IGBP and SCOPE and is co-chair of the Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen (TFRN), a body of the UN-ECE Geneva Convention on Long Range Transboundary Air Pollution. His work in these areas has included preparing options for revision of the UNECE Gothenburg Protocol and developing a vision of how the global nitrogen challenge can be communicated to society. His 4-minute video distilling the findings of the European Nitrogen Assessment can now be found on YouTube.
Since 2012 Prof Sutton has been working with the United Nations Environment Programme supporting their work through the Global Programme of Action on the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities (GPA), leading the provision of science advice the GPA 3rd Intergovernmental Review (IGR-3, Manila). This subsequently led to his leadership of the Global Overview on Nutrient Management for UNEP ‘Our Nutrient World’ (2013) and his spearhearding of the ‘International Nitrogen Management System’ as a developing mechanism of science support for the the emerging ‘nitrogen policy arena’.
2011-present Honorary Professor, University of Edinburgh, School of Geosciences.
1992-present (Natural Environment Research Council) Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (formerly Institute of Terrestrial Ecology), Bush Estate, Penicuik, Midlothian EH26 0QB.
2011-present Individual Merit Promotion (IMP, Band 2).
2004-2011 Individual Merit Promotion (IMP, Band 3).
2003-2007 Head CEH Atmospheric Sciences Division
1998-2004 Principal Scientific Officer (Grade 7 / Band 4).
1994-1998 Senior Scientific Officer (Band 5)
June 1994-Feb 1995 Secondment to Department of the Environment, London: Development of research programme and policy analysis on air pollution.
1992-1994 Higher Scientific Officer (Band 6).
1991-92 Research Fellow. Dept. Meteorology, University of Edinburgh.
1990-91 Research Associate. Dept. Meteorology, University of Edinburgh.
1986 Freelance literature research into environmental acidification. International Energy Agency (Coal Research) London.
2014-2016 Foresight Expert Panel on the Junction of Health, Environment and Bioeconomy (JHEB) of the European Commission (DGRI). Expert Panel Member.
2012-present International Nitrogen Initiative, INI (a joint activity of SCOPE and IGPB): Chair.
2012-present Global Partnership on Nutrient Management, GPNM (a network coordinated by UNEP). Steering Group Member. Vice chair from 2017.
2011-2016 ÉCLAIRE (EU 7th Framework Programme): Project Coordinator and Chair of the Executive Steering Group
2007-present Task Force Reactive Nitrogen, TFRN (UNECE Convention on Long Range Transboundary Air Pollution). Co-chair.
2010-2013 COST 0804 (ABBA: Advancing the integrated monitoring of trace gas exchange between biosphere and atmosphere): National representative to the Management Committee.
2007-2013 Finnish Academy of Sciences 'Centre of Excellence in Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Meteorology of Atmospheric Composition and Climate Change'. Member of the Advisory Board.
2007-2012 International Nitrogen Initiative, INI: Coordinator of the European Centre and member of the INI Steering Committee.
2006-2011 Nitrogen in Europe, NinE (ESF Framework Programme): Vice Chair of the Steering Committee and coordinator of the European Nitrogen Assessment (ENA).
2006-2011 COST 729 (Atmosphere biosphere interactions of nitrogen): National representative to the Management Committee.
2005-2011 NitroEurope Integrated Project (EU 6th Framework Programme): Project Coordinator and Chairman of the Scientific Steering Committee (SSC)
1986 A.R.C.S. (Botany, Imperial College); B.Sc. (Botany, University of London)
1990 PhD. University of Edinburgh
Title: The surface/ atmosphere exchange of ammonia
1992 Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society
FULL LIST OF PUBLICATIONS
(see attachment at the bottom of page)
VIDEO LINK: A message from the European Nitrogen Assessment