Cabot Institute blog

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Friday, 2 December 2016

The Diamond Battery – your ideas for future energy generation

On Friday 25th November, at the Cabot Institute Annual Lecture, a new energy technology was unveiled that uses diamonds to generate electricity from nuclear waste. Researchers at the University of Bristol, led by Prof. Tom Scott, have created a prototype battery that incorporates radioactive Nickel-63 into a diamond, which is then able to generate a small electrical current.

Details of this technology can be found in our official press release here: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/news/2016/november/diamond-power.html.

Despite the low power of the batteries (relative to current technologies), they could have an exceptionally long lifespan, taking 5730 years to reach 50% battery power. Because of this, Professor Tom Scott explains:

“We envision these batteries to be used in situations where it is not feasible to charge or replace conventional batteries. Obvious applications would be in low-power electrical devices where long life of the energy source is needed, such as pacemakers, satellites, high-altitude drones or even spacecraft.

“There are so many possible uses that we’re asking the public to come up with suggestions of how they would utilise this technology by using #diamondbattery.”

Since making the invitation, we have been overwhelmed by the number of amazing ideas you’ve been sharing on Facebook, Twitter and by email. In this blog, we take a brief look at some of the top suggestions to date, and offer some further information on what may and may not be possible.

10 of our favourite ideas (in no particular order!)


Medical devices


From ocular implants to pacemakers, and from insulin pumps to nanobots, it’s clear that there is a great deal of potential to make a difference to people’s lives in the medical field. Many devices must be implanted within the body, meaning long battery life is essential to minimise the need for replacements and distress to patients.

@rongonzalezlobo suggests that the #diamondbattery could power nanorobots which can be injected into a person or animal to sense and transmit information about the health of the individual to an external device. This could be particularly helpful to diabetes patients, for example.




@TealSkys also suggests they could be used to monitor vital signs in individuals in high-risk jobs such as explorers, military professionals or miners.



@JulianSpahr suggests we also investigate ICDs (Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators- small devices which can treat people with dangerously abnormal heart rhythms) and DBS (deep brain stimulation - a surgical procedure used to treat a variety of disabling neurological symptom most commonly the debilitating symptoms of Parkinson’s disease).


The opportunities for implantable #diamondbattery powered devices appear to be significant.

GPS trackers or Geo-markers


GPS trackers are rating highly so far, and could offer an opportunity for us to keep tabs on pets or valuable items without worrying about device batteries running out of charge. Implantable devices using a #diamondbattery would not need to be replaced, minimising discomfort to tracked animals. Indeed, @Boomersaurus suggests we could also use these for tagging animals in wildlife studies.

In addition to Geo-tagging/ tracking, some of you have suggested that the #diamondbattery could be used to power permanent geomarkers.



The Internet of Things


A major concern surrounding the new wave of ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) technologies is the amount of power they might consume. IoT devices require a constant stream of power to transmit over wireless frequencies which could cause issues as these proliferate.

@CIMCloudOne suggests the #diamondbattery could become the new default for IoT devices in the future.



Safety and security


A number of you suggested that the #diamondbattery could be extremely useful in smoke detectors.
The US National Fire Protection Association states that 21% of home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no working smoke alarms, where around 46% of the alarms had missing or disconnected batteries. Dead batteries caused one-quarter (24%) of the smoke alarm failures.

If feasible, this suggestion from @StarhopperGames could therefore not only prevent annoying late-night battery beeps, but may also help avoid preventable death.



However, a question remains as to whether the battery would be sufficient to power the alarm (and not just the detector).

@idbacchus suggested we use the #diamondbattery to power Black Box transmitters in aeroplanes to ensure it is possible to track and record planes for safety reasons.



Remote sensing


Many corners of our planet are far from civilisation and are inaccessible, complex environments. If we are to study the seas, or mountains (or indeed, space) effectively over long periods, low-powered devices with long-life batteries are required.
Many of you called for the use of these batteries in sea and remote location studies:



Seismology and building resilience


Seismic sensors that are located underground could help us to detect early warnings for earthquake risk.



Additionally, small sensors housed within the foundations of buildings/ within building walls may also prove helpful for indoor environment sensing, structural resilience, heat etc.


Mechanical bees


Whilst this is possibly the most futuristic of all the suggestions, we felt that it warranted a mention for innovation! @TheSteveKoch suggests a low-power #diamond battery might be able to power mechanical bees in the future.



Watches


It’s often impossible to know when a watch battery is about to run out, and when it does, it can feel disastrous to the owner. Perhaps a #diamondbattery watch could help people around the world avoid those missed appoints and trains in the future.



Space exploration


Of course, when we send devices out into space we need to know that they have sufficient battery life and sufficient levels of resilience to maintain operations for long periods. @johnconroy and others noted the opportunities for space probes and radio transmitters on the moon:



Bringing the internet to new areas


Finally, whilst it’s currently unclear what the power requirements would be for this idea, deployment of low power UAVs in remote areas to deliver free internet sounds like a highly worthwhile cause.




If you are inspired by these ideas and think you might have a suggestion for future diamond battery uses, send us a tweet at @cabotinstitute or @UoBrisIAC with the hashtag ‘#diamondbattery’.

Thursday, 10 November 2016

What does Trump mean for the environment?

President Trump. Image: Gage Skidmore CCBYSA 2.0

Several weeks ago, I was walking along Avenida Paulista in São Paulo. Through the noise of the traffic, the familiar shout of one man’s name could be heard. ‘Trump, Trump, Trump’ echoed across the street.  Somehow I had stumbled upon a ‘Brazilians for Trump’ rally. A group of 40 people stood on the pavement, clutching signs that read ‘Women for Trump’, ‘Jews for Trump’, ‘Gays for Trump’. This struck me; such demographics holding such signage represented for me a similar message to ‘trees for deforestation’.

Yet, the votes are in. The electoral tally has been made and one fact is obvious: Donald Trump’s popularity transcended demography. As, House Speaker, Paul Ryan has said, Trump “heard a voice out in this country that no one else heard. He connected in ways with people that no one else did. He turned politics on its head.”

Key here is not only Trump’s victory, but also how the Republican Party has been able to ride his coattails to majorities across both the Senate and the House of Representatives. In doing so, the Grand Old Party (GOP), working with Trump, will likely have the freedom to pursue their political agenda. As a result, the Republican platform, published at the 2016 National Convention, provides a number of clues of what we can expect from this new administration.

From this document, it is possible to profile what a Trump administration would mean for US environmental policy. I have previously written blogs of a similar vein for the UK 2015 election and the recent transfer of power in Brazil and it seems only fair that I cast my eye to the United States.
In its platform, the GOP pledge a return to coal as an energy resource, with it described as “abundant, clean, affordable, [and] reliable.” It is likely that the extraction and use of this resource will increase, with federal lands opened up for coal mining, as well as oil and gas drilling. President Obama’s Clean Power Plan will be withdrawn and restriction on the development of nuclear energy likely be lifted. The anxiety of this turn from renewables can be found in the falling stocks of wind and solar companies since Trump’s win.

Furthermore, the President-Elect has already vowed to cancel the recent Paris Climate Agreement. For Trump, climate change is manufactured by the Chinese government and/or an expensive hoax. This rhetoric is matched by many in the Republican Party (who can forget Senator James Inhofe’s snowball routine?) A solid majority in the House will allow for the continued harassment of climate science by individual politicians, such as Representative Lamar Smith, who has previously argued that climate scientists manipulate data to show that the planet is warming.

As has been argued elsewhere, the United States cannot officially leave the Paris agreement until November 2020 (conveniently coinciding with a potential Trump re-election bid.) However, there is another way: to leave the UNFCCC entirely, immediately after taking office. In doing so, a Trump administration could – hypothetically – leave both agreements by January 2018. The political message of such action would be clear: policies of climate change mitigation restrict the opportunities for further American development and must be removed if the Trump administration is to meet its oft-repeated target of 4% GDP growth.

This tension between sustainability and growth is also evident in the likely elimination of a number of regulations related to environmental health. The Environmental Protection Agency will be restricted to an advisory role, with its responsibility for regulation of CO2 removed. Trump has previously mentioned Myron Ebell, a prominent climate denier, as a potential head of this organisation.

Regardless of who is in charge, air and water regulations will likely be kerbed, with Vox reporting that regulations at risk include those related to mercury pollution, smog, and coal ash. Such policies are perceived as a hindrance to ultimate goals of job creation and economic growth. Yet, as the Sierra Club have argued, this restriction of regulation will likely “imperil clean air and clean water for all Americans.”

Such actions will also open up questions of environmental racism. In the United States, people of colour face the effects of pollution disproportionately. As a result, an attack on environmental regulation promises consequences that will migrate into different policy sectors. Furthermore, this is occurring in the shadow of the Flint water crisis: an episode which exposed issues of environmental racism in the country. With the restriction of regulation, it is likely that Flint will cease to be an outlier.

The Washington Post has argued that, these plans will “reverse decades of U.S. energy and climate policy” and recent analysis has shown that such policies will raise US greenhouse gas emissions by 16% by the end of Trump’s (potential) eight year term.

However, the language of the GOP platform cautions against such assertions. Within this document, environmental campaigners become ‘environmental extremists’. The document seeks to depoliticise environmental issues, with, in their words, environmental regulation being “too important to be left to radical environmentalists. They are using yesterday’s tools to control a future they do not comprehend.” Remember, these words have been written at the time of the militarized action against the water protectors of Standing Rock. Such a language suggests that we can expect more aggression against environmental defenders in the future.

The victory of Trump, and of the GOP, not only represents a change in the political landscape but also a likely transformation of the physical one too. It, as some argue, may come to represent a serious challenge to the environmental health of the planet itself.

Writing this, my mind has been drawn back to those campaign signs in São Paulo. ‘Women for Trump’, ‘Gays for Trump’, Jews for Trump’. Yet one thing is certain under this new President: the trees are most definitely for deforestation.


This blog was written by Cabot Institute member, Ed Atkins, A PhD student in the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies.



Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Geology for Global Development: 4th Annual Conference

Sustainable mining, solar energy, seismic risk; the 4th Geology for Global Development Conference held at the Geological Society in London had it all.  Geology for Global Development is a charity set up to with the aim of relieving poverty through the power of geology. The charity is chasing the UN’s sustainable developing goals by inspiring a generation of young geologists to use their training as a tool for positive global change.

Figure 1. The UN's sustainable Development goals (source:  http://www.unfoundation.org/features/globalgoals/the-global-goals.html
The charity is closely linked to several universities meaning the one-day event was awash with bright ideas from young geologists from every corner of the UK. Add to the mix experts in policy and communication including BBC presenter and academic Professor Iain Stewart and you have the recipe for a fascinating day.

Figure 2: GFGD founder Dr Joel Gill gives the opening address on Geology and the sustainable development goals

The programme was impressively diverse, jumping effortlessly from panel discussions on mining and sustainability to group discussions on exploring best practice. There were so many important messages I couldn’t regurgitate everything into a short blog, so I’ve made a super-summary of my favourite points:

Trade not Aid

This topic surfaced several times, and it’s something that I felt reflected the changing attitudes of many NGOs discussed on the day. It was mentioned by The Geological Society’s Nic Bilham in his opening remarks and raised in the groups discussions on best practice. In these discussions, ‘Scene’ Co-director Vijay Bhopal, related his experiences of delivering solar power supply to off-grid Indian villages. He emphasised the necessity to sell the solar technologies to those who need it, even if it is heavily subsidised, as opposed to gifting it. The only way to ensure longevity of solar powered systems was to build a market from the bottom up, he said, training technicians and providing a platform to sell and replace broken parts.  I this capacity, I felt geology has much to offer, developing industry in areas where help is needed is a more effective and sustainable way to provide aid- whether it be by sustainable mining, maintaining boreholes or lighting villages.

The opportunities are out there

The day wasn’t just about discussion, it was about getting involved. Representatives came from all over the country to encourage young geologists to sign up to schemes and events. Here’s a summary of just a few of the opportunities mentioned, along with the people in charge (more information can be found on the GfGd website):



Hazard communication and Geologists: a help or hindrance?

This topic was addressed by Professor Stewart in his keynote on the ethics of seismic risk communication. His core theme addressed the role geologist should play in saving lives in the event of a natural hazard. He used the example of his work in Istanbul, where a large and devastating earthquake is geologically likely in the future. He explored the role of the psyche in resident’s attitudes to the seismic risk they face. In many areas of high-risk, the picture is a complex one and the situation is often politically charged. In the case of Istanbul, the demolition of ‘dangerous’ buildings in high-risk areas was negated by the construction of reportedly unaffordable, earthquake-proof housing. Many residents believed that seismic risk was being used as a political tool to remove them from their neighbourhoods.

So where, asked Stewart, should the geologist slot into the picture? Are they only responsible for reporting the scientific information and exempt from decision-making and education? Or should they shoulder a sense of responsibility to ensure their results reach the people at risk? Should they help by educating about risk or is this really just a hindrance to those involved? In Stewart’s eyes, the geologist has an important part to play, but she must be appropriately trained in the method and timing of communication in order to be most successful. Hopefully, this is something GFGD may address in its capacity to inspire and influence a new generation of geologists.
  

Here my far-from-exhaustive summary ends. To finish would like to thoroughly encourage any geologists (or geologists-in-training) to get involved with GFGD. It was a really insightful day organised by a very deserving charity.

This blog is written by Cabot Institute member Keri McNamara, a PhD student in the School of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol.

Monday, 7 November 2016

Post-truth politics: Why do facts no longer matter to so many people?

Virtually unknown a few years ago, the terms “post-fact” and “post-truth” have exploded onto the media scene in 2016, with thousands of articles around the globe expressing concern over the absence of a shared body of facts and evidence in public and political debate. This concern is buttressed by evidence that the public is misinformed about a range of issues, from vaccinations to climate change and the fabled Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq.
Politicians have always sought refuge in fantasy or subterfuge when confronted by uncomfortable facts. So why the sudden concern with the emergence of “post-truth” politics? Two factors can be identified that confirm that the landscape of public discourse has changed: first, the brazenness with which some politicians have unshackled themselves from the constraints of evidence and reality, and second, the public’s acquiescence with this flight into fantasy land.
Credit – Titan9389/Flickr.com (CC BY-ND 2.0)

These factors are particularly evident in two political contests that have dominated the UK and the U.S. in 2016; namely, the EU referendum and the American presidential election. In the U.S., the pronouncements of Republican candidate Donald Trump are demonstrably false around 70% of the time, according to the independent non-partisan fact-checking site Politifact. Only 4% of Trump’s statements were judged to be unambiguously true. In the UK, many claims of the Leave campaign in the lead-up to the referendum were likewise clearly false, from the claim that the UK transferred £340,000,000 per week to the EU, to the spectre of Turkey joining the EU and its citizens becoming eligible for residence in the UK.
“Vote Leave” poster, Market Street, Omagh. Credit – Kenneth Allen/Geograph.ie (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Trump’s false claims have been routinely debunked by the American media, but this has had little effect on his standing in the polls. Similarly, the mythical figures of the Leave campaign were widely condemned and corrected in the media, without any discernible impact on opinion polls or the public’s beliefs.
Nonetheless, the Leave campaign brazenly continued to display their false figure on their campaign bus to the very end, only for Nigel Farage to admit their inaccuracy on TV within a few hours of the polls closing. And in defiance of all fact-checking, Donald Trump has thus far shown no inclination to let his campaign speeches be infiltrated by facts or evidence.
It is unsurprising that the Washington Post has wondered how democracy can survive if facts no longer matter.

Why do facts no longer matter to so many people? And if facts no longer matter, what does?

To answer those questions we must confront at least one myth surrounding the success of Brexit and the persistent popularity of Trump. In both cases, many commentators have argued that voters supported Brexit or Trump because they felt “disenfranchised” or were “left behind” by globalisation, or live on the “edges of the economy.”
It is true that some Trump supporters belong to that category, as did many Britons who voted to leave the E.U.
The median income of Trump supporters is around $10,000 higher than that of Clinton supporters. If only men voted, polls have suggested that Trump would win the election by a landslide. The “edges of the economy” do not encompass the majority of American men. And although Brexit found more support among low income earners than wealthier Britons, that effect was dwarfed by attitudinal variables such as support for the death penalty, strength of “English identity”, rejection of gay equality, and anti-immigration attitudes. Those same attitudes are also the strongest predictors of support for Trump among Republican voters in the U.S. Among those who believe that newcomers are threatening American values, Trump support is high, and it is low among those who believe that the U.S. is strengthened by immigration. Likewise, hostility towards women is one of the strongest predictors of support for Trump.
Donald Trump makes a campaign stop at Muscatine, Iowa, January 2016. Credit – Evan Guest/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 2.0)

Trump and Brexit are phenomena that have tapped into people’s deeply-held attitudes. The EU referendum ultimately was a contest between the voices of diversity and tolerance on the one hand, and nationalism and exclusion on the other, rather than a competition between different economic visions for the future.

Trump and Brexit are about emotions, not the economics of the moment. It is how people feel about themselves and others.

And emotions operate to a logic that is largely independent of facts and evidence.
But that does not mean those emotions are illogical or erupt on their own, like some sociological volcano, without any possibility of guidance or control. Far from it. Hatred of Muslims or immigrants, misogyny, and ethnic supremacism do not erupt, they are stoked.
We now know from painstakingly detailed research that the “Tea Party” in the U.S. was not a spontaneous manifestation of “grassroots” opposition to President Obama’s healthcare initiative but the result of long-standing design efforts by Libertarian “think tanks” and political operatives pursuing an anti-regulatory agenda. Donald Trump did not come out of nowhere but learned his trade from Sen. Joe McCarthy’s chief counsel who was the brains behind the paranoid hunt for communist infiltrators in the 1950s.
Likewise, the negative attitudes towards the E.U. in England did not spontaneously emerge but were shaped by decades of mendacious tabloid coverage that immersed the public in industrial-strength misinformation about the E.U. The anti-immigration attitudes that are particularly rampant in regions devoid of immigrants did not grow naturally but were stoked by relentless media spin.
Daily Mail newspaper, 23 August 2006. The headline was repeated in August 2015. Credit – Gideon/Flickr.com

If Brexit and Trump are driven by emotion and attitudes, fuelled by misinformation and demagoguery, rather than (just) economic concerns, what does this portend for the future?

The developments in the UK during the last few months offer a glimpse of how a public decision driven by such emotions can turn into actual or proposed policy. In the few months since pro-Remain MP Jo Cox was assassinated by a man calling himself “death to traitors, freedom for Britain”:
This selection is neither exhaustive nor necessarily representative, as there may be many policy proposals and actions that escape public notice because they are less controversial. Nonetheless, those actions do not reveal an attitude that considers the French or German people as neighbouring vintners whom we might visit for anything from a short holiday to a gap year or indeed retirement. Those actions do not consider the Belgian people as friendly neighbours who like their beer cooler and stronger and their chocolate particularly exquisite. Those actions fail to remember that the EU won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2012 for transforming Europe from a continent of war to a continent of peace.
Those actions also fail to mesh with the feelings of the European people who lit up their landmarks—from the Eiffel Tower to the Ponte Vecchio—in Union Jack colours on the evening of the referendum in a gesture of appreciation of the UK’s membership in the E.U.
Front page of the Algemeen Dagblad, Dutch newspaper, 15th June 2016. The paper issued an open letter in English titled “please don’t leave us”.

It remains to be seen how those initial actions and proposals will translate into long-term policy, but they do not augur well for a future climate of tolerance and diversity in the UK and towards its closest neighbours. Similarly, if Donald Trump wins the presidency, it is difficult to be optimistic about the prospects for tolerance and continued protection of civil rights in America.

How can we move on from here?

This is a political question that can only be resolved by political means. To have any chance of success, those political efforts must be based on a realistic assessment of the current situation. Two factors in particular deserve to be recognised:
First, the xenophobia of Trump and the anti-immigrant slant of the Leave campaign are not coincidental features of campaigns that are pursuing some other substantive agenda. On the contrary, it is difficult to escape the conclusion that xenophobia and white nativist supremacy are the agenda.
Second, the contemporary Republican Party and its British counterpart have very little in common with the parties that each used to be. The British Tory party was instrumental in drafting the European Convention on Human Rights in the 1950s and Winston Churchill was one of its ardent supporters. The contemporary Tory party is now committed to withdrawing from it, to the alarm of human rights organisations.
Sir David Maxwell Fyfe, the Earl of Kilmuir, in 1954. British Conservative politician, lawyer and judge who was instrumental in drafting the European Convention on Human Rights. Credit Elliott &Fry/Wikimedia Commons (Public Domain)

The Republican Party used to be the party of the conservative but pragmatic establishment, with figures such as Ike Eisenhower or Gerald Ford. Today, Trump’s evident authoritarianism is only the beginning of the transformation of that former Republican Party into an off-shoot with troubling and chilling attributes: A party that finds little wrong with a candidate who refuses to promise that he will abide by election results has at best a tenuous grip on the democratic mainstream. A party that brazenly promises not to confirm any nominee for the Supreme Court if Hillary Clinton is elected president is a party that has taken leave from democratic practice and traditions.
We should not ignore those realities however discomforting they may be.


This article was written for the Policy Bristol Blog by Cabot Institute Member Professor Stephan Lewandowsky, Chair in Cognitive Psychology, University of Bristol.

Independent verification of the UK’s greenhouse gas report: holding the Government to account

In the early hours of October 15th, negotiators from over 170 countries finalised a legally binding accord, designed to counter the effects of climate change by way of phasing down emissions of Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). These gases, introduced to replace the ozone-depleting CFCs and HCFCs for which the original Montreal Protocol was drafted, are typically used as coolants in air-conditioning systems. Unfortunately, like their predecessors, they are potent greenhouse gases, whose climate forcing effect per molecule is often many thousands of times greater than carbon dioxide. 
The Kigali deal, named after the Rwandan city in which it was struck, is a compromise between rich countries, whose phase-out plan will begin as early as 2019, and poorer nations, for many of whom the relief of air-conditioning has only just become available. India, for instance, will not make its first 10% emissions cut until 2032.


Delegates celebrate the finalisation of the Kigali deal. Credit: COP 22
When the deal was finally completed, there was much celebration and relief. Against the ironic drone of several large air-conditioning units, brought in to maintain a comfortable temperature on a stifling Rwandan night, US Secretary of State John Kerry labelled the deal ‘a monumental step forward’.
However, as with the much lauded Paris Agreement, the success of this landmark piece of legislation will rely heavily on accountability. Each nation reports its greenhouse gas emissions, including HFCs, to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It is from these reports that a nation’s progress in cutting emissions can be assessed.
Here at the University of Bristol’s Atmospheric Chemistry Research Group (ACRG), we use atmospheric measurements of these greenhouse gases, in combination with an atmospheric transport model, to independently estimate emissions. Recently, we have used such an approach to estimate emissions of HFC-134a, the most abundant HFC in the global atmosphere. Observations of this gas were taken from the Mace Head Observatory, which can be found on the rugged West Coast of Ireland.
When we compared our emission estimates with those the UK government reported to the UNFCCC, a significant discrepancy was observed; between 1995 and 2012, the UNFCCC numbers are consistently double those derived independently.


The Mace Head observatory is ideally positioned to intercept air mass from the UK and Europe. Credit – University of Bristol
Via collaboration with DECC (Department of Energy and Climate Change), the government body that was previously responsible for the construction of the UKs annual emissions report, we were granted access to the model used to estimate HFC-134a emissions. Analysis of this model uncovered a number of assumptions made about the UK’s HFC markets, which in practice did not add up. Our work has led to a reassessment of the HFC-134a inventory by the government, and a subsequent lowering of the reported emission totals in the 2016 report.
In the wake of the Kigali and Paris agreements, both of which will require accurate reporting of emissions, our work is amongst the first examples of how independent verification can directly influence inventory totals. However, this study represents just the tip of the iceberg. Across the Kyoto ‘basket’ of gases determined to have an adverse effect on climate, inconsistencies between reporting methods are common place. A more concerted effort is therefore required to harmonise inventory reports with independent studies.
In countries such as the UK, where networks capable of measuring these gases already exist, the focus will be on improving the accuracy and reducing the uncertainty of our emission estimates; a step which will likely involve the addition of new sites, new instrumentation and significant investment.
Perhaps more importantly, these methods of independent verification must now be extended to regions where such infrastructure does not currently exist. Emissions from many of these countries are anticipated to rise sharply in the coming years, but are poorly monitored.
In July, researchers from the ACRG returned from Northern India, after two months studying greenhouse gas emissions from the FAAM research aircraft.


The Atmospheric Research Aircraft from the Facility for Airborne Atmospheric Measurements (FAAM), established by NERC and the Met Office as a facility for the UK atmospheric science community. Credit – FAAM
The utilisation of different data platforms is likely to play an essential role in enhancing the global network of greenhouse gas observations. It is the responsibility of the research community to ensure continued growth of the measurement network, and improve the availability of independent emission estimates required to verify the success (or otherwise) of climate legislation.



This blog was written for the Policy Bristol Blog by Dan Say, PhD student, Atmospheric Chemistry Research Group, School of Chemistry, University of Bristol.