Environmental responses to climate change

Fjallsjokull Glacier

The impact of climate change is one of the biggest and most complicated challenges facing society today. We are developing a holistic climate change impact model to answer fundamental questions:

  • How will the anticipated climate change affect our living environment, from our landscape to the oceans around us, from natural hazards to the quality and availability of water?
  • How will these impacts, including our own responses, feed back to the processes of climate change?

Selected research

Coastal changeSea level and coastal change

Information on BGS research into and monitoring of coastal erosion, coastal behaviour and sea level change. Coastal erosion case studies.

Ice sheetsIce ages and ice sheets

Understanding how ice masses behave is one of the key challenges facing the scientific community.

Periglacial legacyBritain's periglacial legacy and glacigenic sediment

What effects did permafrost have on the near-surface geology in Britain? Research in Norfolk, UK.

Great Barrier Reef expeditionGreat Barrier Reef environmental changes expedition

This expedition will collect cores from fossil coral reefs to improve our understanding of change in sea level during the deglaciation that followed the last major ice age some 20 000 to 10 000 years ago.

4D modellingGlacier monitoring: BGS observatory at Virkisjökull, Iceland

BGS has set up a long-term monitoring programme at Virkisjökull, part of the climatically sensitive Oraefajökull Ice Cap in south-east Iceland.

Talla digital terrain model Evolution of upland landscapes — Talla Earth observatory

Our aim in this project is to understand processes of environmental change in an upland soil-geoscape developed on resistant metasedimentary rocks.

Related research

GeohazardClimate change and geohazards

Will flooding be more frequent or more severe? Will landslides or karst collapses be more frequent? Will the engineering of UK's infrastructure and housing be impacted by the shrinking and swelling of clay?