Theme 1 – Earth System Science Modelling

Our Theme 1 programme is being developed across the following three strategic areas to address high-level questions concerning the capacity of rock weathering driven by intensively managed crops to capture carbon and ultimately affect future CO2-climate trajectories, ocean-atmosphere chemistry and marine ecosystems.

Find out more

Theme 2 – Fundamental Crop Weathering Science

Our Theme 2 programme is utilising world-class controlled environment facilities in Sheffield to elucidate mechanisms and genetic controls on weathering by major warm climate crops (maize and rice) to accelerate the development of new faster weathering varieties that maximise carbon capture and protection against pests and diseases, thus reducing pesticide usage and costs.

Find out more

Theme 3 – Applied Weathering Science

Our Theme 3 programme is undertaking large-scale field trials to address questions concerning rates of rock weathering in agricultural soils under natural conditions and how feedbacks, e.g., via nutrient release and pH change, may increase food/bioenergy crop productivity and slow soil greenhouse gas emissions.

Find out more

Theme 4 – Sustainability & Society

Our Theme 4 programme is addressing the real-world feasibility of enhanced weathering through integrated assessment modelling of its environmental and socio-economic impacts, assessment of a global sustainable supply chain capable of carbon capture and storage, and developing a responsible research and innovation framework.

Find out more

Externally Funded Research

We are expanding our enhanced weathering research with large-scale UK field trials, public engagement and knowledge transfer and building links with other carbon sequestration programmes, as listed here.

Find out more

Latest newsView all

Low-carbon energy grids could help rock dust absorb more CO2

May 6, 2022

Greener electricity grids could help us to use rock dust to remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reach net zero much quicker, according to a new study from researchers at the University of Sheffield.

The study, led by Dr Rafael Eufrasio from the University’s Advanced Resource Efficiency Centre, has found that using renewable energy and electric transport systems in the rock dust’s supply chains could provide a major boost to how much CO2 the technology can remove from the atmosphere when added to agricultural soils.

Adding rock dust to soils – known as enhanced rock weathering – could absorb up to 45 per cent of the atmospheric carbon dioxide needed for the UK to reach net zero, according to a recent study by scientists at the University. However, the technology has an extensive supply chain that presents major environmental challenges with substantial environmental impacts.

But now, a new study published today (5 May 2022) in the journal Nature Communications Earth and Environment has found that using low-carbon energy sources to help source the dust, as well as electric trains and vehicles to transport it, could make its supply chain much greener.

Read More

Prof David Beerling elected a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales

May 3, 2022

Congratulations to our Director, Professor David Beerling FRS and now FLSW, on being elected as a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales.

David says: “I’m delighted & honoured to be elected a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales.”

See the full list of Fellows on the Learned Society of Wales website here.

Read More

Managing UK agriculture with rock dust could absorb up to 45 per cent of the atmospheric carbon dioxide needed for net-zero, research shows

Apr 25, 2022

Adding rock dust to UK agricultural soils could absorb up to 45 per cent of the atmospheric carbon dioxide needed to reach net zero, according to a major new study led by scientists at the University of Sheffield.

The study, led by Dr Euripides Kantzas, a senior research associate in the Leverhulme Centre for Climate Change Mitigation at the University, provides the first detailed analysis of the potential and costs of greenhouse gas removal by enhanced weathering in the UK over the next 50 years.

Professor David Beerling, Director of the Leverhulme Centre for Climate Change Mitigation at the University of Sheffield and senior author of the study, said: “Our analysis highlights the potential of UK agriculture to deliver substantial carbon drawdown by transitioning to managing arable farms with rock dust, with added benefits for soil health and food security.”

Read More