Events with the Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures

Grantham Centre

The Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures is an ambitious and innovative collaboration between our University and the Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment. The Centre aims to use research to help build a fairer world and save natural resources for future generations.

The Grantham Centre are holding two events on the themes of sustainability for anyone who wants to find out more about how research can help build a more sustainable world. Both events are free to attend.

Professor Stephen Long FRS: 'Bioengineering Photosynthesis'

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Demand for our major crops may rise 70-100% by 2050, while we look increasingly to croplands for energy as well as food, feed and urban development.

The strategies of the Green Revolution are now approaching their biological limits. However, photosynthesis, which is among the best known of plant processes, falls far below its theoretical efficiency, even in our best modern cultivars.

Genetic transformation may be a way forward in generating greater crop production. In this talk Professor Long will outline the the Gates Foundation Project on Realising Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency (RIPE) and the success this  is aSynthetic and systems approaches being used in our Gates Foundation project and related projects will be outlined and successes described.

Speaker biography

Steve Long FRS is Gutgesell Endowed University of Illinois Professor of Crop Sciences and also Distinguished Professor of Crop Sciences at the University of Lancaster, UK and Visiting Newton-Abrahams Professor at the University of Oxford, UK. Steve’s research focus is the efficiency of photosynthesis, the process by which plants trap sunlight energy to build carbohydrates and the wide range of organic chemicals on which life depends.

He is currently Director of the $25M Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation international project on Realizing Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency (RIPE).

He has given briefings on bioenergy, climate change impacts and food security to the Vatican and serves in advisory roles on key agricultural committees in the US, UK and EU.

Dr Tara Garnett: 'Animals in the frame: what does a sustainable livestock future look like?'

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Food connects us to some of the most important environmental, societal and ethical issues of the day. There is general agreement that something needs to be done – but there is far less consensus about what that ‘something’ should be. Nowhere are these disagreements more apparent than in debates around the future of livestock production and associated meat and dairy consumption. In this talk Tara Garnett takes a look at different approaches to analysing and addressing the livestock ‘problem’ and explores the values and ideologies that underpin them.