Contaminated land around industry is a growing concern
Cranfield University is taking a leading role in tackling contaminated land and waste management challenges

Cranfield’s Professor Philip Longhurst, Centre for Bioenergy & Resource Management, will be delivering a session at the Energy Now Expo (UK), next month. The event is dedicated to the growth of renewable energy within the agricultural and rural communities of the UK, and as such Cranfield is well placed to deliver expert opinion. The event brings together farmers, landowners and other rural business owners to engage with industry experts on the latest renewable energy opportunities available, together with the best practices in energy generation and efficiency.

Professor Longhurst’s talk, titled ‘Growing energy crops on contaminated land’, will look at the increasing interest in using contaminated land for energy crops, metal recovery and pollution cleanup. Examples from the UK, China and Brazil will be given of studies that focus on crop choice, energy value and metal extraction to achieve improved use of otherwise lost land-bank. This is an exciting area of research, and complements Cranfield’s commitment to supporting businesses and governments to deliver a greener economy and environment, as well as other initiatives that are ongoing at the University. Read Professor Longhurst's blog, How sunflowers can save us; repairing contaminated land and powering our homes.

For more information about Energy Now Expo, visit

Contaminated Land Management

Professor Longhurst will also be attending two events in China and her territories in the coming months, further strengthen ties with the region.

The first will be the Sino-UK workshop on developing low carbon and sustainable methodologies for Brownfields and marginal land re-use in China, which is being held in Suqian, Eastern China, in February. The event is focused on soil protection and management, and will look to see how practices and policies from the UK can be implemented in China.

This event is led by Professor Frederic Coulon, Principal Investigator for the China UK Partnership for Contaminated Land Management. Working collaboratively through this partnership, which is part funded by the UK government Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Cranfield is taking a leading role in tackling the issue of contaminated land on former industrial, mining and agricultural sites. Cranfield’s role is pivotal as it has considerable expertise in the areas of environmental pollution, land management and soil remediation.

For more information about Cranfield’s Sino-UK partnership on tackling contaminated land management issues, visit

Biological waste as a resource

Professor Longhurst has also been invited to deliver a keynote at The 2nd International Conference on Biological Waste as Resource 2017, held in Hong Kong in May.

The conference will focus on how biological waste such as food waste, yard waste and sewage sludge has imposed critical burdens on the environment, consuming precious land resources and aggravating global warming. The aim will be to assist the formulation of an efficient sustainable management agenda for organic waste in the local context, which satisfies the environmental compatibility, financial feasibility and social needs. Discussions will also revolve around state-of-the-art treatment technologies, advanced management strategies, and political issues pertaining to recycling and recovery of organic waste

For more information, visit