November 4, 2014, by Matt

New research facility the “Centre for Environmental Geochemistry”…

Our new Professor of Isotope Geoscience Prof. Melanie Leng introduces the new centre…

This year saw the opening of a new research facility in Nottingham, the Centre for Environmental Geochemistry.

The Centre brings together existing geochemical facilities and groups within the University of Nottingham and the British Geological Survey (out at Keyworth). The CEG aims to undertake research into some of the most pressing environmental problems we face, as well as offering teaching and training to post graduate students.

I was hired to be the first Director of the Centre and my current plans are to initially focus our research on applying geochemistry to three main themes – reconstructing past environmental and climate change, the cycling of chemicals through soils and watercourses, and developing new tools to research the underground environment._PJW8420a It isn’t just me though! At the BGS we have a whole raft of scientists on board including:

Dr Michael Watts an inorganic geochemist specialising in ecosystem and human health in particular in relation to methods for assessing risk and routes of exposure to metals, he also looks at micronutrient deficiencies linked to food security and human health in developing countries.

Dr Chris Vane is one of our organic geochemists with a wide range of interests including everything from biogeochemical cycling of carbon in salt marshes and mangrove swamps, he investigates organic pollutants in estuaries, and looks at the type and amount of organic matter in hydrocarbons in order to improve the utilisation of our hydrocarbon resources.

As for me I investigate climate and environmental change in the Antarctic Oceans, over Northern Europe, the Mediterranean and East Africa, in particular by drilling very deep holes into the earth to extract cores from which environmental information can be gathered. Our research is done in collaboration with lots of other people of course, including many staff at the University of Nottingham in the Schools of Geography and Biosciences, and the Faculty of Engineering. If you are interested please check out our website:

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