Circular and Bio Economies
Research in this cluster includes the EU-funded project – Circular Economy: Sustainability Implications and Guiding Progress (CRESTING) – which investigates the spatial contexts in which the circular economy develops
The NERC-funded Resource Recovery and Remediation of Alkaline Wastes project examines approaches to the remediation of hyperalkaline pollution in industrial waste and is led by researchers in this cluster. Our researchers also make a key contribution to the THYME project (funded by Research England). THYME is a collaborative project between the universities of Teesside, Hull and York, working with industry to develop the regional bioeconomy by focussing on three areas of research: transforming bio-based waste into higher-value new products; repurposing greyfield industrial sites for bio-based manufacturing; and enhancing the productivity of the region’s bioeconomy. We’re exploring ways to improve the region’s bioeconomy through adding value to by-products and waste, developing novel manufacturing processes, adapting feedstocks and enhancing resilience against risks within the supply chain.
Sustainable Cities and Regions
Our researchers examine industrial symbiosis and regional development and the adoption of renewable energy and other green technologies in urban and rural areas.
Other key areas of our work include exploring alternative local food networks; innovative pathways to de-growth and sustainable alternative local economies; and the funding and financing of low-carbon mass transit infrastructure across metropolitan areas.
We also examine how climate change and the transition to a low carbon economy are transforming the fortunes of structurally disadvantaged maritime port cities and regions around the North Sea.
The Interplay between Organisms and their Environments
Our research in the area of evolutionary genomics is identifying genomic change associated with speciation and reproductive isolation, the evolution of sex chromosomes and the role of hybridisation in generating biodiversity.
A further focus is agri-environments – with research examining the survival of bees in nutritionally altered agri-environments, agro-pathogens and plant biology. The Department for Food and Rural Affairs-funded project SoundWaves focuses on high-profile innovative field and experimental work on the effects of noise and vibration on marine organisms.
Our research into future flood resilience is led by researchers based in the Energy and Environment Institute. It has secured European funding for the Flood Resilience Innovation Centre which benefits communities by supporting the development of new technologies in flood rescue and resilience.
With support from UK Government, we’re also developing the Ark National Flood Resilience Centre with full-scale urban and rural, swift and still water flood simulation. These enhancements will result in the ability to deliver integrated multi-agency training, research, innovation and community engagement that is centred on flood resilience. The centre will also offer training for the next generation of researchers with Continuing Professional Development and MSc courses.
Low Carbon Energy Alternatives
This cluster involves a range of interdisciplinary research and collaborative projects to deliver broad societal, environmental and economic benefits in a post-carbon world.
With collaborators, we secured joint EPSRC-NERC funding for the Panorama Doctoral Training Partnership in offshore wind energy and the environment. The programme will support over 70 PhD students across 5 cohorts, combining academic and industry expertise to accelerate the low carbon transition and develop solutions to the challenges facing the offshore wind industry.
The closely-related EU Horizon 2020 project INCUBIS (an Industrial Symbiosis Incubator for Maximizing Waste Heat/Cold Efficiency in Industrial Parks and Districts) is co-led by our staff in collaboration with international partners. INCUBIS investigates the potential for energy savings in the Humber region, with the aim of making EU policy recommendations relating to energy technology.
Other projects within this theme include the estuarine response to habitat loss and gain through investment in infrastructure; evaluating the economic and environmental impacts of tidal energy schemes; and the development of expert systems for the integrated management and planning of the ‘Energy Estuary’.