Professor Philip Haygarth


Research Interests

Professor Phil Haygarth conducts research on the interface between soils and freshwaters, with a focus on diffuse (particularly phosphorus) pollution and runoff control in a catchment context. His research studies the way in which soils can be encouraged to hold phosphorus at an optimal level to supply plants for food production, whist defining conditions that prevent the unwanted leakage to fresh-waterways. The practical impact of his research has been to help the UK government, and others around the world, develop policies that help farmers and catchment managers optimize plant uptake of phosphorus but minimize losses to water. Often this involves efforts to reduce runoff energy, which can have dual benefits for both diffuse pollution and flood control.

Specific lines of research and impact include:

  • Development and maintaining the UK ‘Demonstration Test Catchments’ that can help provide a focal meeting point for policy makers, farmers and researchers
  • A focus on plant types that have particular benefit traits, such as the potential to be efficient users of phosphorus or rooting qualities that ‘soak up’ runoff water
  • Studies of phosphorus biogeochemisty including the fate and transport of organic chemical forms
  • A consideration of what may happen to flooding and phosphorus transfer under future climate change scenarios which predict warmer wetter winters and hotter drier summers

Phil is an enthusiastic teacher of Soil Science and Alpine Environmental Processes at the undergraduate level and also proudly leads the National Centre for Doctoral Training on Soil Science funded by NERC and BBSRC called STARS. Phil recently completed a term as President of the British Society of Soil Science.

Mapping Soils in Montserrat
21/12/2022 → 24/03/2023

Talent and Research Stabilisation Fund 2022 (Phil Haygarth)
21/11/2022 → 31/03/2023

Q-NFM : Quantifying the likely magnitude of nature-based flood mitigation effects across large catchments
01/11/2017 → 31/07/2022

STARS CDT: 2016/2017 Added-value activites in innovation
01/08/2016 → …

Exploiting root exudation of organic acids and phytases to enhance plant utilisation of soil phosphorus
31/03/2014 → 31/08/2017

Knowledge, policy and practice for sustainable nutrient management and water resources protection in UK and Chinese agro-ecosystems
01/01/2014 → 31/01/2016

Knowledge Policy and Practice for Sustainable Nutrient and Water Resources Protection in UK and Chinese Agro-Ecosystems
01/02/2013 → 31/03/2016

ERDF funded Centre for Global Eco-Innovation: Recovery, Reuse and Sustainable Treatment of Glycol Contaminated Surface Water Run-off at Airports.
30/09/2012 → …

Implementing Component 2 of Demonstration Test Catchments
01/06/2012 → 30/09/2017

Catchment Modelling Strategies for Faecal Indicator Organisms: Options Review and Recommendations
01/09/2010 → 01/03/2011

Delivery of Phosphorus and Faecal Indicator Organisms from Agricultural Sources to Watercourses
01/07/2008 → 31/12/2013

Accelerating Nutrient Cycles at the Riparian Land: Water Interface
01/01/1900 → …

Eden Demonstration Test Catchments Phase 3
01/01/1900 → …

The Catchment Change Management Hub
01/01/1900 → …

NERC (External organisation)
Membership of committee

  • Centre for Global Eco-innovation
  • Energy Lancaster
  • Environmental and Biogeochemistry
  • Sustainable Catchments
  • Water Science