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Low carbon farming: making carbon accounting relevant to farming and food production

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Sunday, March 03, 2019
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Agriculture and the food system is challenged by wide ranging environmental and social objectives, such as climate change mitigation and provision of healthy food. These challenges require the development of enabling governance structures. Experience elsewhere (e.g. California and Australia) shows that market-based approaches can lead to public or private recognition of greenhouse (GHG) mitigation in agriculture, provided monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) protocols are well defined. There is indication of both political and business demand for verified carbon accounting processes to recognise low carbon production practices.

It needs to be explored how existing on-farm carbon accounting tools and emerging measurement technologies align with MRV requirements, and how they could be integrated with existing supply chain benchmarking and other GHG accounting initiatives. Furthermore, little is known about farmers’ attitudes towards participation in on-farm carbon accounting, and about the factors governing participation in private or public accounting initiatives (governance structure, characteristics of MRV tools, incentive levels).

The student will be based in SRUC in Edinburgh, in the UK, and will undertake a half a year placement at the Irish lighthouse farm, the Lands at Dowth (a UNESCO Heritage Site), which is owned and managed by Devenish. The student will also do one longer and regular shorter visits to WUR in Wageningen, in the Netherlands. Financial assistance to relocation will be available.

An MSc in a relevant area (environmental management and economics/policy, carbon management and finance/business, or similar) is required (see Further Particulars).

Funding Notes

The stipend will be set at UKRI recommended levels for a 3.5 year-period and the studentship is funded to pay domestic tuition fee levels for UK/EU students. The student will receive an annual student stipend of £14,777 (£15,009 in 2019/20). The student will be registered at Wageningen University and Research and draw on a student training budget (up to £500 per year). The expected start date is 1st September 2019. With this WUR agreement the student doesn’t pay any tuition fee, so it is free for both home and international students.

How good is research at SRUC - Scotland’s Rural College in Agriculture, Veterinary and Food Science?
(joint submission with University of Edinburgh)

FTE Category A staff submitted: 57.37

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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