Furthering understanding of the interaction between renewable energy infrastructure and the hosting ecosystem

Enhancing environmental co-benefits and minimising co-costs of the low carbon energy transition

Using co-developed knowledge to inform policy and practice

Energy & Environment

Our Vision

The underpinning vision of our research and innovation is to ensure land use change for renewable energy confers environmental benefits beyond that of low carbon energy

WHY?

Transitioning to low carbon energy supply will prompt a substantial land use change across the world, with implications for ecosystems, at a time of increasing land use pressure and environmental decline.

WHAT?

Resolving and quantifying the co-benefits and co-costs of renewable energy infrastructure in our landscapes and using this knowledge to embed broader environmental benefits into the design, construction, operation and decommissioning.

HOW?

Working across disciplines and sectors to co-develop collaborative field, laboratory, modelling and desk-based research, innovation and consultancy projects and using the findings to change policy and practice.

If you’d like to hear more or work with us on research, innovation or consultancies activities

OUR CURRENT PROJECTS

UKERC

UKERC

UKERC is a large whole system energy consortium. Within this, we are within the Energy, Environment and Landscape theme, focusing on resolving the impacts of energy systems on ecological systems with a focus on solar energy.
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EnergyREV

EnergyREV

EnergyREV is a large consortium project focused on smart local energy systems, funded by the UK Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund as part of Prospering from the Energy Revolution. Our role is to further understanding of the environment impacts.
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Remote Sensing of Solar Park Impacts

Remote Sensing of Solar Park Impacts

This research is led by Guoqing Li, who is visiting Lancaster University from Ludong University, China, and focuses on resolving the environmental impacts of solar parks using remote sensing imagery.
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Strategically Integrated Renewable Energy and Environment Systems (SIRE)

Strategically Integrated Renewable Energy and Environment Systems (SIRE)

The SIRE is an Industrial Innovation Fellowship awarded to Dr Alona Armstrong. The overarching aim of the project is to provide robust evidence to inform the strategic deployment of wind and solar energy across the UK delivering energy, environment and socio-economic benefits.
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OUR RECENT PUBLICATIONS

Ground-level climate at a peatland wind farm in Scotland is affected by wind turbine operation

Ground-level climate at a peatland wind farm in Scotland is affected by wind turbine operation

Established the spatially explicit variation in ground level climate caused by operational wind farms. Detailed the potential implications for ecosystem carbon cycling.

Post-print PDF
Journal page

Solar Park Impacts on Ecosystem Services: Implementation (SPIES: I)

Solar Park Impacts on Ecosystem Services: Implementation (SPIES: I)

SPIES:I builds on SPIES, a previous NERC Innovation Project, which produced a decision support tool for managing solar parks for ecosystem services. See the project website here. Within SPIES:I the functionality of the SPIES decision support tool is being extended, it is being converted it into a web-based application, tested in the commercial environment and the best means to embed it into policy and practice resolved.

SPIES:I is led by Dr Alona Armstrong in collaboration with Prof Piran White, University of York. Many stakeholders have contributed to SPIES, including BRE National Solar Centre, Colleymore Farm, Corylus Ltd, Cotswold Council, Good Energy, Holistic Ideas, IEMA, Intelligent PV, Kencot Hill Solar Farm, Lightsource, The National Farmers Union, Natural England, Natural Generation, REG Power, RSPB, The Solar Trade Association, WeSET, Wild Power, Woodland Valley Farm, and Wychwood Biodiversity.

NERC funded
Grant Code: NE/R009449/1
Period: 2018-19
GotW Page: SPIES:I

Cleve Hill Solar Park Microclimate & Vegetation Scoping Study

Cleve Hill Solar Park Microclimate & Vegetation Scoping Study

Consultancy report for Cleve Hill Solar Park Ltd. The report explores the potential effects of a proposed east-west orientated solar park, Cleve Hill Solar, on the microclimate and vegetation response. It was led by Alona Armstrong, in collaboration with Simon Smart (The Centre for Ecology & Hydrology) and Nick Kettridge (University of Birmingham).