Decarbonising the Gas Network
Published Wednesday, November 15, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0565
The burning of natural gas for heating contributes 14% of the UK’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Decarbonising, or reducing the carbon content of the UK gas supply is one option for reducing the emissions from heating. This POSTnote looks at the contribution that two alternative gases, hydrogen and biomethane, could make in achieving this goal.
Environmental Earth Observation
Published Wednesday, November 15, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0566
Earth observation (EO) is the process of gathering information about the Earth from a range of sensors to provide monitoring data at a range of scales. This POSTnote outlines some of the environmental uses and benefits of EO data, the potential opportunities from advances in relevant technologies and challenges facing the effective use of EO data.
Published Monday, November 13, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0564
People's responses to risk are shaped by the way that such risks are communicated. Communicating risks effectively can defuse concerns, mitigate disaster situations and build trust with public institutions and organisations. This POSTnote defines the often misunderstood concepts of risk, uncertainty and hazard and describes the key stakeholders communicating it. It examines the factors that shape how people perceive and respond to such risks and summarises evidence on effective risk communication strategies.
Mental Health Service Models for Young People
Published Friday, October 6, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0563
This POSTnote describes some of the new models of Children and Young People Mental Health Services (CYPMHS) and examines the challenges to their effective implementation.
Risk Assessment of Nanomaterials
Published Thursday, October 5, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0562
The unique properties of engineered nanomaterials are beneficial to a range of industries. However, uncertainties in assessing their potential health and environmental risks could hinder their safe use. This POSTnote summarises the current regulation of nanomaterials and highlights potential future directions for regulatory testing approaches.
Regulating Clinical Trials
Published Monday, October 2, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0561
This POSTnote describes the new EU Clinical Trial Regulation and the timetable for its implementation and examines its likely impact on the regulation of clinical trials in the UK post-Brexit.
Migrants and Housing
Published Friday, August 4, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0560
Migration is often cited in public debate as a significant factor in the demand for UK housing. This POSTnote provides an overview of available research on migrants and housing. It examines definitions and data sources on migration and its implications. It also outlines the possible impact of migrants on housing, including variation by tenure type, migrant characteristics and region. Finally, it considers the impact of housing on migrants and local communities.
Topics: Asylum, Homelessness, Housing, Housing supply, Immigration, Nationality, Overcrowding, Owner occupation, Population, Private rented housing, Social rented housing
Online Information and Fake News
Published Wednesday, July 12, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0559
Internet search engines and social media platforms are an increasingly popular way of accessing news and information. In 2017, the proportion of UK adults consuming news online exceeded those who watched news on TV (74% versus 69%). This note considers how people access news online, how algorithms (sequences of instructions) and social networks influence the content that users see, and options for mitigating any negative impact.
Topics: Adult education, Broadcasting, Central government, Information technology, Intellectual property, Internet and cybercrime, Media, Political parties, Press, Schools, Science, Telecommunications
Supply of Medical Radioisotopes
Published Tuesday, July 11, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0558
A POSTnote that highlights the critical role of radioactive isotopes used in medicine, and outlines the challenges for the UK in ensuring their future supply.
Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture
Published Tuesday, July 4, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0557
Agricultural practices can reduce water quality, degrade soils and cause biodiversity loss. This in turn can disrupt natural processes that support food production. Environmentally sustainable agriculture seeks to reduce environmental damage and restore such processes. This POSTnote summarises associated land management options, agricultural policies and the constraints imposed by a new trading environment.
Security of UK Food Supply
Published Tuesday, July 4, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0556
This note outlines current UK trade in food and animal feed, examines the challenges raised to the security of UK food supply by withdrawal from the EU and analyses the policy options available for improving UK food security
Rising Sea Levels
Published Thursday, June 15, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0555
Sea level rise increases the frequency and severity of coastal flooding and rates of coastal erosion. Sea level rise will continue far beyond the 21st century, even if global temperature increase is limited to 2°C above pre-industrial levels. This POSTnote sets out the causes and likely future levels of sea level rise and its implications. It updates POSTnote 363 on Sea Level Rise, published in September 2010.
Global Health Inequalities
Published Tuesday, May 2, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0553
A POSTnote which reviews trends in global health inequalities in the context of the transition from the Millennium Development Goals to Sustainable Development Goals.
Cyber Security of UK Infrastructure
Published Tuesday, May 2, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0554
The Government has identified ‘cyber’ as one of six Tier 1 threats to UK national security. This POSTnote focuses on the cyber security of the UK’s critical national infrastructure, describing measures to improve cyber security and challenges in implementing them. It also reviews the new National Cyber Security Strategy, along with international policy and legislation.
Topics: Armed forces, Arms control, Aviation, Central government, Data protection, Emergencies and disaster management, Employment, Energy, EU law and treaties, Financial institutions, Health services, Industry, Information technology, Intelligence services, International law, International trade, Internet and cybercrime, Ministers, Offensive weapons, Privacy, Railways, Regulation, Roads, Security industry, Standards, Students, Terrorism, Training, Utilities, Water
Published Monday, April 24, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0552
Quantum Technologies use the behaviour of matter and light that is normally only observed at very small scales. This POSTnote introduces recent advances, applications, and UK initiatives to support their development and commercialisation. It also reviews policy concerns such as privacy, access to new technologies and secure communications.
Topics: Armed forces, Arms control, Aviation, Companies, Defence equipment and procurement, Defence expenditure, Defence policy, Economic policy, Employment, EU budget, European Commission, Industry, Intellectual property, International trade, Medicine, Research and innovation, Roads, Science, Utilities, Water
Dietary Advice, Pregnancy & Breastfeeding
Published Friday, March 3, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0551
This note focuses on the latest UK dietary advice given to women from family planning through pregnancy and into breastfeeding.
Future Energy Efficiency Policy
Published Monday, February 27, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0550
This POSTnote outlines the benefits and costs of future improvements in energy efficiency across various UK sectors. It then describes the barriers to energy efficiency measures, outlines options for future energy efficiency policy and summarises analyses of the effectiveness of different policy options.
Greenhouse Gas Removal
Published Friday, February 3, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0549
The 2015 Paris Agreement called for a balance between sources of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions and their removal by 2100 to halt global temperature rise. This POSTnote explains why Greenhouse Gas Removal (GGR) techniques may be required to achieve this goal, outlines the benefits of and concerns about them, and considers policy options.
New Plant Breeding Techniques
Published Wednesday, February 1, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0548
This note outlines some of the new plant breeding techniques developed recently and looks at their applications and the regulatory challenges they raise
Published Tuesday, January 31, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0547
Environmental crime is generally used to describe any illegal activity that harms the environment. It can also have serious human health and social impacts. This POSTnote outlines the different types of environmental crime and options for tackling them.