The natural environment provides food, water, fuel, clean air and the services for creating and sustaining human life and well-being. Without healthy natural systems these benefits cannot be sustained, therefore it is essential that they are properly valued and managed.
Ecosystems are under threat from pollution, urbanisation and fragmentation as a result of human development and the services they provide are often not reflected in economic considerations. This problem is at the root of many of the ecosystem collapses being faced at a global level (such as deforestation and over-fishing). Natural systems must be managed in a balanced way to reflect their complexity and maximise the multiple benefits that can be attained through good planning and design and the correct use of scientific knowledge and best practice.
Our work in this area includes themes such as biodiversity, geodiversity, landscape, soils, human interactions with the environment, ecosystem services, natural capital accounting, catchment based approaches, and how best to deliver key legislation and policy.