Core activities

Our production and consumption systems interact with the environment in complex ways. In this research group, we carry out and develop methodology to quantify diverse environmental impacts all along the chain of economic systems from raw material extraction to waste treatment, disposal and recycling. A major holistic tool of ours is environmental life cycle assessment (LCA). The carbon footprint is also a major output of LCA, but we address other environmental impacts in LCA.

We also specialise in modelling production and processing systems and using these to quantify environmental impacts, interactions and unintentional consequences. This is most powerful when coupled with systems models, which we have developed for major commodity production in the UK. Our core background is the agriculture, food chain, but we also work with energy, bioenergy and waste management systems.

We have applied our models to quantify the benefits of improving animal health on reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and the impacts of genetic improvements in livestock in reducing environmental impacts. We also used a systems-LCA model approach to quantify GHG and other impacts from the entire UK food system and to explore the effects of alternative food consumption patterns. We also developed a tool to carry out LCA of cropping systems (Crop.LCA).

Our most recent foray into LCA is in the emerging technologies of GHG removal from the atmosphere to combat climate change and developing new objective methods to assess them.

We apply the techniques of Operational Research to a variety of systems, especially applying Linear Programs (LP). Our best example is the Silsoe Whole Farm Model (SFARMOD), which has been used in several major projects to forecast land use changes and production choices. We applied these approaches and data analysis to understand better agricultural activity data and to use these in enhancing the UK agricultural GHG and ammonia inventory to reflect changes in activity data.

Key research areas

  • Life cycle assessment,
  • Systems modelling,
  • Greenhouse gas removal,
  • Agriculture and food,
  • Energy systems,
  • Waste management,
  • Operational research,
  • Animal health and environmental impacts,
  • Impacts of dietary change.

Current and recent research projects

  • UP-Green-LCA,
  • Soils-R-GGREAT,
  • GHG and ammonia inventory,
  • Cattle and bTB in Wales,
  • DataVet.


Goglio P, Owende PMO (2009). A screening LCA of short rotation coppice willow (Salix sp.) feedstock production system for small-scale electricity generation. Biosyst Eng 103:389–394. doi: 10.1016/j.biosystemseng.2009.03.003

Goglio P, Bonari E, Mazzoncini M (2012). LCA of cropping systems with different external input levels for energetic purposes. Biomass Bioenerg 42:33–42. doi: 10.1016/j.biombioe.2012.03.021

Goglio P, Colnenne-David C, Laville P, Doré T, Gabrielle B (2013). 29% N2O emission reduction from a modelled low-greenhouse gas cropping system during 2009–2011. Environmental Chemistry Letters 11:143–149. doi: 10.1007/s10311-012-0389-8

Goglio P, Grant BB, Smith WN, Desjardins RL, Worth DE, Zentner R, Malhi SS (2014). Impact of management strategies on the global warming potential at the cropping system level. Sci Tot Environ 490:921–933. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.05.070

Goglio P, Smith WN, Grant BB, Desjardins RL, McConkey BG, Campbell CA, Nemecek T (2015). Accounting for soil carbon changes in agricultural life cycle assessment (LCA): a review. J Clean Prod 104:23–39. doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2015.05.040

Goglio P, Brankatschk G, Knudsen MT, Williams AG, Nemecek T (2017)(a). Addressing crop interactions within cropping systems in LCA. Int J Life Cycle Assess 1–9. doi: 10.1007/s11367-017-1393-9

Goglio P, Smith WN, Worth DE, Grant BB, Desjardins RL, Chen W, Tenuta M, McConkey BG, Williams A, Burgess P (2017)(b). Development of Crop.LCA, an adaptable screening life cycle assessment tool for agricultural systems: A Canadian scenario assessment. J Clean Prod doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.06.175

Goglio P, Smith WN, Grant BB, Desjardins RL, Gao X, Hanis K, Tenuta M, Campbell CA, McConkey BG, Nemecek T, Burgess PJ, Williams AG (2018). A comparison of methods to quantify greenhouse gas emissions of cropping systems in LCA. J Clean Prod 172 doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.03.133

Ingrao C, Bacenetti J, Bezama A, Blok V, Geldermann J, Goglio P, Koukios EG, Lindner M, Nemecek T, Siracusa V, Zabaniotou A, Huisingh D (2016). Agricultural and forest biomass for food, materials and energy: bio-economy as the cornerstone to cleaner production and more sustainable consumption patterns for accelerating the transition towards equitable, sustainable, post fossil-carbon societies. Journal of Cleaner Production 117:4–6. doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2015.12.066

Uzoma KC, Smith W, Grant B, Desjardins RL, Gao X, Hanis K, Tenuta M, Goglio P, Li C (2015). Assessing the effects of agricultural management on nitrous oxide emissions using flux measurements and the DNDC model. Agric Ecosyst Environ 206:71–83. doi: 10.1016/j.agee.2015.03.014