Sustainable Futures

The resources on Earth are finite, but our population keeps growing. To prepare for the future, we must adapt the way we use natural resources, generate energy and grow our food.

At NTU, our research explores low carbon technologies, sustainable consumption, green mobility and sustainability policies, in order to improve performance and energy efficiency.

Find out more about Sustainable Futures research at NTU, including impact case studies and information on groups and centres, by searching our research.

Some of the challenges we are focusing on

  • What's the most efficient way to manage natural water resources?

    Water quality, green energy and food safety are growing challenges for environmental sustainability. Our experts hope their research will help manage resources in the transition to a more "green" economy to support the future of society.

    One global issue is the eutrophication of water bodies that result in toxic algal blooms. Our research is developing cost-effective and safe technologies using modified local soil (MLS technology) to treat toxic algal bloom.

    Read more about our research into solving eutrophication.

  • How do we make agriculture sustainable?

    Food supply for the future depends on the development of innovative systems for growing crops. The team at NTU, are building nanoparticles that boost the growth rate of a range of vegetables.

    We're using our knowledge to reduce air pollution in Nottingham, applying our research on effective use of resources and post genomic technologies to create a green wall and vertical farming system in the city centre.

    Read more about our progress in sustainable vertical farming and precision agriculture.

  • How do we make our cities green?

    Our research area, Low Carbon Future Cities, covers a range of projects that are part of a consortium called Remourban.

    The aspects we explore include: green built environment, green mobility and technologies needed for integration of green infrastructures in the cities.

    As part of this research, we're working with Nottingham City Council to:

    • Retrofit existing poor quality housing stock
    • Develop technologies that support the use of low temperature district heating
    • Help citizens sustainably manage their homes
    • Improve transport management

  • Can consumption be reduced while improving people’s quality of life?

    Excessive consumption of energy and materials is threatening climate change and resource security. Our multidisciplinary research teams are exploring opportunities to reduce unnecessary consumption that would address these concerns while improving people’s quality of life.

    Our experts use life cycle thinking to understand how redesigning products and services, influencing how consumers acquire and use products, and treating waste as a reusable resource can lead to more sustainable consumption.

  • How can sustainable products and services reduce environmental impacts?

    Manufacturing industries are facing increasing demand to reduce their environmental impacts while providing sustainable products and services. We have been closely working with industrial partners to meet the demand by developing and applying various sustainable production technologies, sustainable design and manufacture, renewable energy, circular economy approaches, social and environmental LCA, and ICT techniques for sustainability.

    Supported by a number of external research grants, we have successfully conducted sustainable production projects in a range of industrial sectors such as textiles, clothing, LED lighting, construction, furniture, and mechanical and electronic products.

Industrial partners and collaborators include

Anglian Water, Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), Environment Agency, Natural England, Wildfowl, Wetlands Trust, CelluComp Ltd. and Efficiency Technologies LTD, Green Eco-environmental technology Ltd, Beijing, China, Roto-Ora Ltd, New Zealand, Fundacion Cartif, Spain; Nottingham City Council; Tepebasi Municipality, Turkey. Ayuntamiento de Valladolid, Spain; Xeridia S.L., Spain; Iberdrola Ingenieria Y Construccion SA, Spain; Acciona Infraestructuras, Spain; Dalkia Energia Y Servicios, Spain; Grupo Mecanica Del Vuelo Sistemas, Spain; Nottingham Energy Partnership LBG; Sasie Ltd; Infohub Ltd; Demir Caner, Turkey; Olcsan cad Teknolojileri Yazilim Donanim Danismanlik Sanayi Ve Ticaretanonim Sirketi, Turkey; Anadolu University, Turkey; Energon Enerji Verililigi Danismanligi Hizmeti Ve Ticaret Limited Sirketi, Turkey;, Belgium; Steinbeis Innovation GGMBH, Germany; Association pour le Redeploiement Economique du Bassin Seresien - AREBS, Belgium; Miskolc Holding Önkormányzati Vagyonkezelő Zártkörűen Működő Részvénytársaság, Hungary; Officiae Verdi SPA, Italy, LivEco Ltd; MicroMax Plant Health Ltd; CelluComp Ltd; Efficiency Technologies Ltd; Purico Group Ltd; Wuhan Intelligent Equipment Industrial Institute Co Ltd. Universities of Leeds, Cardiff and Bath, BEIS (Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy), the Committee on Climate Change and WRAP.

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