The science behind the agri-environment schemes
It was during her project field work in Cumbria last summer that Beth Brockett, PhD candidate in the Lancaster Environment Centre, realised that farmers, farm environment advisors and scientists would benefit from more opportunities to discuss the science behind agri-environment schemes.
"I was talking to farmer Will Rawling about the work I was about to start on his farm to estimate soil carbon storage and nitrogen retention", said Beth, "and he commented that, although in his capacity as Chair of the Cumbrian Farmer Network he had attended many events about climate change and farming, no one had ever explained the science behind the process of soil carbon storage. I did my best to explain and in return Will explained about the processes involved in silage fermentation. We both commented that it was a shame farmers and scientists didn't talk like this more often and nine months later, with sponsorship from the British Ecological Society and the Ecosystems Knowledge Network, twelve farmers, ten farm environment advisors and nine academics met at Will's farm to discuss a range of scientific topics pertinent to livestock farming in the northwest."
At the event academics and PhD students from Lancaster University and Manchester University shared their research and the importance of it to farming. Whilst local farmers introduced a monitoring scheme, which aims to increase vegetation diversity on the common.
With reform of the EU Common Agricultural Policy and changes to the UK's agri-environment schemes likely to consider managing farmland to deliver ecosystem services like absorbing greenhouse gases, these conversations benefit all parties.
"Thoroughly enjoyed today", commented farmer, Glenis Postlethwaite. "Personally, I would like a whole day on each topic."
Fri 28 June 2013
A Faculty team representing science, technology, engineering and maths took part in EDF Energy's 'Science Day' on Saturday 21st March at Heysham Power Station.
Wed 25 March 2015
Professor Roger Jones has replaced Professor Peter Ratoff as Head of the Physics Department. Roger gained a PhD studying neutrino interactions at CERN and Fermilab before starting his career at CERN working at the Large Electron-Positron (LEP) Collider.
Tue 24 March 2015
As part of British Science week, 170 students from 14 schools across the region came to Lancaster University on Wednesday 18th March to compete in science, technology, engineering and mathematics challenges.
Mon 23 March 2015
Lancaster University’s new flagship Engineering Building will provide a beacon of excellence for research and recruitment for the UK’s buoyant and significant engineering industry.
Mon 23 March 2015