Protecting the Environment: Agricultural Biodiversity and Waste Management

Maximising Production and Biodiversity in NI Agriculture

Prof Ian Montgomery (QUB) Agriculture in Northern Ireland (NI) has changed little from 1970 with its emphasis on grass production and livestock sectors. It is dependent on a narrow range of enterprises and subsidies, and beset by production, waste, financial and social issues. NI agriculture lacks a strategic plan that addresses its problems holistically, or prepares to meet global threats, in particular climate change, and priorities, most notably food security. The NI countryside also has experienced a loss of biodiversity and decline in environmental quality and, hence, provision of ecosystem services, e.g. water quality and pollination. The future of agriculture

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Waste management and disposal: locating illegal buried waste using remote sensing (satellites, aircraft, drones and geophysics)

Dr Alastair Ruffell (QUB) Buried illegal waste and uncontrolled legal waste dumps are a major problem in Northern Ireland, as well as in Scotland, Ireland, Italy, Canada. The mention of the words ‘Moubouy Road’ are enough to demonstrate to anyone the politically-charged nature of this problem. Yet the environmental (loss of habitat, pollution of groundwater) and economic (landfill tax, loss of recycling profit) costs are equally significant as the political background as to why waste is buried in the first place. Both applied crime fighting as well as pure science are being brought together to better understand how to locate

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