The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) has launched an online tool that will allow environmental professionals to evidence future challenges

A new online ‘Challenges Tool’ created by the The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) will allow environmental science professionals to ‘articulate the key knowledge gaps and evidence needs pertaining to a set of future environmental policy and practice challenges’.

Through a series of workshops throughout England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and overseas territories, the policy and practice, academic, business and third sector communities helped to identify 65 future environmental evidence challenges arising from the UK’s separation from the EU. Broadly, the challenges comprise:

  • climate change, air quality and energy
  • environment, conservation and wildlife
  • food, farming and timber forests
  • overseas territories
  • water, fisheries and marine

NERC has now asked the wider environmental sciences community to validate these challenges, and outline broad research areas that have the potential to meet future evidence needs. Input through the Challenges Tool will inform a proposal for a large-scale transformative research and innovation programme.

Find the Challenges Tool and respond to the call for evidence here.



  1. In Powys Mid Wales (and no doubt elsewhere), we are being impacted by the massive proliferation of industrial chicken units (ILUs). There are 123 ILU major developments currently on the Powys planning Portal, in addition to the staggering amounts of such developments already in place.

    For each of these developments and importantly the cumulative impact of them, there is significant concern about the level of accuracy in the information provided for the Applications. Many impacts appear to receive only cursory attention, in addition to the known inaccuracies.

    It is extremely important that the accuracy of such data is improved.

    Thank you

  2. Thanks very much Romy.
    Are you able to submit your ideas for new knowledge/evidence in this area through the online portal?

    NERC EEF Initiative Team


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