An autonomous harvester starts to cut robot-grown barley
The groundbreaking Hands Free Hectare project has just seen its first harvest. This £200,000 Innovation UK-funded project by Harper Adams University with Precision Decisions has modified existing machinery to drill, sow, spray and harvest the crop without any human control. The project aims to show how automation can facilitate a sustainable farming system where multiple smaller, lighter machines will enter the field, minimising the level of compaction (SDG 15, life on land and SDG 9, industry, innovation and infrastructure).
Constructing and maintaining transportation infrastructure is very resource intensive and can have negative impacts on the environment. Reviewing geotechnical engineering in transport infrastructure highlights the transformation in the past twenty years to using more sophisticated technologies integrating sustainability principles. SDG target 11.2 aims to provide sustainable transport systems, which this article focuses on, in particular activities relevant to sustainable earthwork construction aimed at minimising the use of energy and production of CO2.

Environmental Science & Policy, April 2016, Pages 123 - 130

‘Sustainability’ is strategically framed in the context of infrastructure governance in the Netherlands. The open-ended character of sustainability makes it a good discursive concept in governance of large-scale infrastructure projects. This paper discusses some of the implications of the dynamics of sustainability in today’s complex and multi-dimensional world of governance. Prioritising sustainability in infrastructure contributes to the advancement of SDG 9.1 to develop reliable and resilient infrastructure to support economic development and human well-being.
Effective implementation of rules on reduced emission from avoided deforestation and forest degradation (REDD +) depends on the compatibility between these rules and existing sectoral policies associated with forests. These authors examine the coherence between REDD + polices and Kenyan policies. They find that coherence is impaired by lack of cross-sectorial consultations on REDD + and that a lack of coherence at the national level creates conflicts at the local level. Cross-sectorial consultative framework is therefore a prerequisite for policy coherence. This paper addresses SDGs 13, 15 and 16.
Food security is enshrined in SDG2 and is also a core component of the human development and capability paradigm, since food access and entitlements are critical for reinforcing essential human capabilities. This paper argues that agriculture is central to improving food security and reducing poverty in Africa, requiring rapid increases in land productivity and increases in agricultural yields. A science-based approach that integrates gender and sustainability is critical to design and implement policies that improve the availability of farm inputs and farm technology.
Project Clean Cow
This special report focuses on getting the most out of your innovation effort. A close focus on several key areas can help. Product innovation can open up new markets for producers and enable them to maintain competitiveness in increasingly competitive global markets. This fits well with the SDG 9 of Industry Innovation, also Technology, Production & Consumption.

Forest Policy and Economics, December 2014, Pages 23 - 33

Reducing emissions from deforestation requires policy change. This paper investigates how governance systems and their discursive practices are affecting policies aimed at reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries: it highlights the challenges to the advancement of SDG 15.1 to ensure the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, in line with obligations under international agreements by promoting conservation, restoration and sustainable use of these ecosystems and their services.

Environmental Modelling & Software, December 2014, Pages 327 - 350

Agricultural systems models worldwide are increasingly being used to explore options and solutions for food security, climate change adaptation, and mitigation and carbon trading problem domains. Improvements to the Agricultural Production Systems sIMulator (APSIM) can contribute to advancing SDG 15 and minimising the adverse environmental effects of food production.

Global Environmental Change, May 2014, Pages 152 - 158

Ecosystems provide a range of services that are crucial to human wellbeing, health and survival. This paper provides an updated estimate of the global value of ecosystem services to enable these services to be properly appreciated and taken into account during decision-making. Knowing the true value of ecosystem services contributes to advancing SDG target 13.3 to improve awareness-raising and action on climate change mitigation, as well as SDG target 15 as it helps preserve ecosystems and maintain high biodiversity.