Years Active: 2009-2014


The project explored the potential use of bioenergy crops across the UK, looking at feasibility, sustainability implications, and constraints on production opportunities.

Further Information

Reviewing spatial aspects of bioenergy development to 2050, subject to environmental, economic and social factors, the project identified optimised spatial distribution and impacts, and addressed the following:

  • Bioclimatic distribution and yield - looking at the potential spatial distributions and yields from present to 2050
  • Environmental, social and economic constraints - looking at what might be constraints on construction opportunities, eg SSSIs (Site of Special Scientific Interest), rivers, etc
  • Economic assessment and spatial optimisation
  • Environmental, social and economic impact assessment

The research team comprised of experts from the University of Aberdeen, NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, University of East Anglia, Scottish Agricultural College and the University of Southampton.

Applying a whole systems approach, the researchers drew on data, models and tools already developed to project the potential spatial distribution of energy crops under current and future climate. Outputs include spatial maps and related supply curves of optimised energy crop distributions, and maps of economic, social and environmental consequences of these distributions.

This project sits within our Energy and Environment research theme.

Key Outputs

  • Pogson, M., Hastings, A. and Smith, P. (2012). Choosing the right spatial data to drive models: Sensitivity of crop model predictions to meteorological and soil data. Environmental Modelling and Software, 1: 37-43.