AERU's work has had an impact which belies the small size of the group. It has not only directly affected on-farm practices around the world, but has also been influential in steering policy both at home and abroad covering agricultural production, the environment and the food chain as a whole. Some examples of
our impact are outlined below:
- 2021: Work undertaken by AERU in 2017 for EFSA (‘Review of published data on exposure to pesticides for residents and bystanders’) and a peer reviewed paper published at a similar time (Lewis, K. & Tzilivakis, J., 2017 - DOI) are used as evidence in EFSA’s recent public consultation document ‘Guidance on the assessment of exposure of operators, workers, residents and bystanders in risk assessment for plant protection products’ which seeks to update existing guidance related to exposure risk assessments.
- 2020: AERUs work with FERA for DEFRA is developing a pesticide load indicator for the UK. This work combines data from the PPDB with usage data taken from the Pesticide Usage Surveys undertaken by FERA and uses an assessment framework similar to that used by the Danish Government in their Pesticide Load Indicator. See Development of pesticide load indicators and Pesticide, biopesticide and veterinary substances databases.
- 2006-Ongoing: A part of the pesticide and other chemical data collated by AERU has been made publicly available online in the form of the PPDB (Pesticide Properties DataBase), BPDB (Bio-Pesticides DataBase) and VSDB (Veterinary Substances DataBase). These are accessed from all over the world (they regularly get over 14,000 visits per day) and extensively cited in literature as the main source of data driving the risk assessments reported.
Pesticide, biopesticide and veterinary substances databases.
- 2019-2020: AERU's work on collating the measures implemented under the Nitrates Directive are being used to support the development of future policies and measures to reduce nitrate pollution.
Providing support in relation to the identification of approaches and measures
in action programmes under Nitrates Directive (91/676/EEC).
- 2006-2020: AERU have been involved in assessing the impact on GHG emissions of different options under the UK's Countryside Stewardship scheme. This work was first undertaken in 2006 and has been extended and repeated as the scheme and its options have evolved over the years. The work undertaken by AERU has contributed towards reducing GHG emissions and increasing carbon sequestration by helping scheme administrators to encourage the adoption by farmers and land managers of options that reduce net emissions.
Countryside stewardship GHG emissions.
- 2012-2021: AERU have undertaken several projects for the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) in which they have collated the latest evidence on chemicals is food and livestock feed. The knowledge synthesised by AERU has been used by EFSA to support their regulatory and evaluation processes that are used to guide European policy. See Chemicals in food and feed.
- 1994-2017: AERU pioneered the concept of environmental
management systems within the agriculture and land use sector, with many of the
management practices now common place on farms today. This included the
development of tools such as the award winning EMA software application, which
had 8000 users over 10 years and led to many spin-off tools and services, such
as the ADLib which became a key knowledge
transfer service. See
Environmental Management for Agriculture; and
ADLib (Agricultural Document Library)
Also see news articles.
For further information please contact the AERU team.