Research Themes: Environmental Sciences and Engineering

Environment, Energy and Sustainability: Low carbon energy solutions; Environmental biotechnology; Molecular ecology; Sustainable use and conservation of marine, freshwater and terrestrial natural resources; Marine and terrestrial ecology; Digital communication and technology.

REF 2021 Impact Case Studies

Showcasing the range of impact case studies submitted by Bangor University's College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering.

imagined COVID-19 virus
A representation of the COVID-10 virus

Environmental surveillance tools provide public health protection in Covid-19 pandemic

Bangor research has developed a range of analytical tools, technologies and models for the effective surveillance of harmful viruses in the wider environment, leading to risk-based industry standards

Our Research Themes

The College has notable research strength in the Sustainable Use, Conservation and Ecology of Natural Resources, which spans marine and terrestrial environments with foci on marine renewable energy, fisheries and aquaculture, the coastal zone, forests, the agricultural landscape, and along the whole value chain of renewable materials and bio-based chemical products.

A specific focus of our Interdisciplinary research between environmental sciences and electronic engineering is in the development of sensors and sensing networks (on drones, in soils and freshwater, and mounted on livestock and invertebrates) for environmental and agricultural applications.

World-leading Research

Bangor University is one of the top 25 UK universities for research grant funding from the Natural Environment Research Council. 

More than 75% of the research submitted to the most recent Research Excellence Framework, (REF) 2014, by the College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering has been rated as world-leading or internationally excellent. This places the College in the top 25 amongst UK universities in each of three subject areas: Environmental Sciences, Agriculture and Electronic Engineering. Research strength has grown rapidly in the College with its quality rating in Environmental Science increasing by 20% since the previous 2008 research assessment, the 5th highest increase of any UK university, which now places the College in 16th place for its “research power”. 

The impact of our research was especially highly rated in REF2014: we achieved a score of at least 90% world-leading or internationally excellent for this measure in both Environmental Sciences and Agriculture.  In addition, Bangor University was ranked 7th in the UK, and 1st in Wales, for the impact of its agri-tech research publications in the landmark review for the UK Government, “Encouraging a British Invention Revolution: Sir Andrew Witty’s Review of Universities and Growth”.

The College’s research featured strongly in two UK Government BEIS Science and Technology Audits published in 2019:

  1. The North West Nuclear Arc Science and Innovation Audit: A Science and Innovation Audit Report sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy” (jointly with Manchester University).
  2. North West Coastal Arc: Partnership for Clean and Sustainable Growth: A Science and Innovation Audit Report sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy” led by Lancaster University with significant input from Bangor University.  

The College has a strong record of regional research collaboration with other Welsh Universities, as well as those in north west England. Bangor University Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research, Professor David Thomas, led the Welsh Government Sêr Cymru National Research Network in Low Carbon, Energy and Environment and, after competitive selection, five of its eight constitute research clusters were led by Bangor academics.

We are also a leading member of Environment Platform Wales, through which it collaborates with the Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales, and of Supercomputing Wales

The BEACON Biorefining Centre of Excellence, in which Bangor is a partner with Aberystwyth and Swansea Universities, was awarded the European Union RegioStars Award for “Sustainable growth: Green growth and jobs through Bio-economy”.

Working with Others

We are core members of the Envision NERC Doctoral Training Partnership, dedicated to developing next generation leaders in environmental science, together with Lancaster and Nottingham Universities and three independent research centres

We have strategic research partnerships with:

  • the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, one of whose four research stations is co-located with the College on the University’s campus in the Environment Centre Wales, constituting one of the largest groups of environmental science researchers in the UK. Our current collaboration is delivering key research evidence to the Welsh Government to inform their environmental policy development.
  • the National Oceanography Centre, with whom we have a long track-record of joint research projects in the area of physical oceanography.

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