The Environmental IoT: Understanding and Managing the Natural Environment through Internet of Things Technology

Lead Research Organisation: Bangor University
Department Name: Sch of Environment and Natural Resources

Abstract

The Internet of Things (IoT) represents the next major step for the Internet as it evolves from a communication substrate that connects computers to one that connects and embraces everyday objects (things). This has the potential to revolutionize many different sectors of the economy and society more generally, e.g. enabling smart cities, smart transport systems, intelligent management of energy supplies, etc, all enabled by data collection from sensors. Most research in the Internet of Things has been carried out in cities and urban areas more generally. In our view, IoT has even more potential in rural environments, providing real-time data streams to support a deep understanding of environmental inter-dependencies and the subsequent support for holistic management strategies. More specifically, we argue that the combination of IoT technology coupled with Cloud Computing enables a paradigm shift in our understanding and management of the natural environment in times of unprecedented environmental change.

This project will illustrate and evaluate the potential of IoT technology in a given catchment, the Conwy. Through this, we will deliver:

1. An integrated distributed systems infrastructure consisting of an experimental Internet of Things also linking to a cloud computing environment, and achieving interoperability across the resultant complex system;

2. A set of techniques to discover and study inter-dependencies across disparate real-time data streams representing different environmental facets, at potentially different geographical locations and at different scales;

3. Two end user driven applications based on the underlying IoT/ cloud infrastructure demonstrating the impact of a more integrative approach to science and how it can inform holistic environmental management, e.g. across land and water management.

The proposed research involves a world class, cross-disciplinary team bringing together the expertise of the School of Computing and Communications at Lancaster University and the Environment Centre Wales (incorporating CEH and the University of Bangor). The project also has a strong Stakeholders Group involving representatives of key beneficiaries of the work including: Welsh Water, Natural Resources Wales (merged Environment Agency-Wales, Forestry Commission Wales, Countryside Council for Wales), Welsh Government and Conwy CC.
 
Title Artworks 
Description Seehttp://www.environmental-iot.com/art.html 
Type Of Art Artwork 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact Production of a colour brochure to accompany artworks 
URL http://www.environmental-iot.com/art.html
 
Description shown how we can link sensors cheapy in the environment to report on environmental problems.
Exploitation Route Now using this technology in other projects linked to industry
Sectors Agriculture, Food and Drink,Communities and Social Services/Policy,Education,Environment

 
Description See report from the lead PI on this project (Gordon Blair, Lancaster University) Police force may trial the technology for sheep rustling activities. Also led to the production of new industry-led grant proposals on the use of sensors in the environment. The work has facilitated dialogue with a range of precision agriculture companies and the use of sensor networks for environmental monitoring.
First Year Of Impact 2015
Sector Agriculture, Food and Drink,Environment
Impact Types Societal

 
Description BBSRC Sustainable Agriculture Research and Innovation Club (SARIC)
Amount £678,280 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/P004539/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2017 
End 10/2020
 
Description COFUND
Amount £326,230 (GBP)
Funding ID Jinyang Wang 
Organisation European Commission 
Sector Public
Country European Union (EU)
Start 02/2016 
End 01/2019
 
Description Joint Virtual Nitrogen Centre; Newton Fund
Amount £2,941,551 (GBP)
Funding ID BB/N013468/1 
Organisation Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2016 
End 12/2018
 
Description NRN Ser Cymru
Amount £473,291 (GBP)
Funding ID NRN5 
Organisation Welsh Assembly 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2015 
End 10/2018
 
Description Collaboration with Welsh Water 
Organisation Welsh Water
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Data and knowledge sharing
Collaborator Contribution Data and knowledge sharing on water quality issues in the Conwy catchment
Impact Joint datasets
Start Year 2016
 
Description Aberconwy School outreach event 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Professor Jones gave a presentation on the NERC DOMAINE and allied research programmes ongoing in the Conwy catchment at an outreach event at Aberconwy School on 13/07/2015
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description CEH Conwy Catchment Stakeholder Event 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Professors Johnes, Jones and Evans gave presentations to a large group of stakeholder organisations as a CEH-led Stakeholder engagement event at the Glasdir Centre in Llanrwst, Conwy catchment on 16/06/2015. New links were made with local Natural Resources Wales staff and National Trust field officers.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Conwy Catchment Partnership meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact On 13/02/17, the WP3 project team attended and presented an update on the DOMAINE programme at the Conwy Catchment Partnership Stakeholder Meeting held at Llanwrst, in the Conwy catchment. The meeting was attended by The National Trust, Natural Resource Wales, Welsh Water and RSPB Cymru
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Royal Welsh Show keynote made by PI 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Talk on the future of grasslands and new technologies.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description School Science Day 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Science Open Day (University)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description conference talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Conference talk at the International Fertiliser Conference in Cambridge
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
 
Description working with industry 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact knowldege transfer
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020