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Opportunities

The work will bring together a broad range of research disciplines to drive an increase in high quality multi- and interdisciplinary research and innovation.

We will be allocating funding for the Clean Air: Analysis and Solutions, and UK Climate Resilience programmes through open competition. 

Current opportunities:

 

Bids invited for: Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) – Clean Air

Met Office tendering on behalf of BEIS. 

Call references: DN424739 and DN424761


To bid for these opportunities, see notes at the end of this page.  Please note that these opportunities are open to UK operating and registered organisations.  

Grant Funds for the period January 2020 – March 2022

Call for competition to cover the following lots:
 

Lot number Title Amount
CA19-1 Urban outdoor air quality modelling £700,000
CA19-2 Air quality exposure modelling £550,000
CA19-3 UK Emissions Modelling System £1,250,000

Key Dates

Bid deadline: 11 October 2019, 12 noon

Estimated award of call: November 2019

Estimated delivery period: Year 1: January 2020-March 2020, Year 2: April 2020-March 2021, Year 3: April 2021-March 2022

Background 
The overall aim of activities CA19-1 and CA19-2 is to develop community modelling system(s) to simulate outdoor air quality in the UK and evaluate health outcomes of policy decisions at urban scales. It consists of two lots which are complimentary, and bidders are welcome to bid for either or both. 

CA19-1 - Urban outdoor air quality modelling 
This activity is to develop a modelling system(s) to simulate multi-scale outdoor air quality in the UK. 
  
 The lot will:  
•    Develop and validate a model or chain of models able to simulate (speciated) UK national to street scale outdoor air quality. 
•    Include a verification capability for urban air quality predictions. 
•    Produce national to local scale outdoor air quality data suitable for exposure calculations. 
•    Deliver this as an open source community modelling capability. 
.
CA19-2 - Air quality exposure modelling 
This activity is to develop community modelling system(s) to evaluate health outcomes of policy decisions at national and urban scales.  
 
The lot will: 
•    Develop a UK exposure modelling capability.  
•    This will include population groups and individual movement-based approaches to exposure calculation. 
•    Be able to use national to local scale outdoor air quality data. 
•    Demonstrate the capability through the generation of exposure assessments.  
•    Deliver this as an open source community modelling capability. 

CA19-3 – UK Emissions Modelling System
The aim of activity CA19-3 is to develop a modelling system able to access and host emissions data, manipulate it and produce modelled emissions with suitable temporal and spatial scales for national to urban outdoor air quality modelling and analysis. In supporting research and policy areas this will need to be flexible enough to:
•    Include access to and be able to manipulate existing inventories. 
•    Support and demonstrate the addition of new ‘research’ emission data sets.
•    Meet a range of spatial and temporal scales from urban to national and sub-hourly to multi-year.

To address this need, a UK Emissions Modelling System (the UK-EMS) is envisaged.

 

Summary of Clean Air Programme aims

The Call specification has been written to align to the following hierarchy of wider aims and objectives:

Background to SPF Clean Air Programme - 

Atmospheric pollution in the UK is responsible for ~40,000 early deaths and has a cost of ~£20bn pa to health services and business. The UK is entering a transformative period in air quality as transport, heating, energy, solvent use and agricultural emissions change. Most of the “easy wins” to reduce particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, ammonia and nitrogen oxides have already been implemented in the UK. Future improvements will require innovative solutions underpinned by new research to protect the health of society, whilst pursuing clean growth and increasing national productivity. 


The SPF Clean Air Programme is being delivered through a partnership between the Met Office and UKRI Research Councils. 
The vision of the Clean Air programme is a coordinated landscape of research and innovation co-designed with users to develop robust solutions that reduce emissions and impacts of atmospheric pollution. The evolving nature of the air quality challenge and lack of cohesion in the research and user community is limiting both research and innovation developments and policy benefits. Consequently, stakeholders are faced with multiple evidence streams leading to inconsistent analysis and inefficient application of new science to support policy and action. To address these challenges the programme will support a multidisciplinary portfolio of investment. 


The objective of the SPF Clean Air programme is to: 
•    drive forward new multidisciplinary research and innovation; 
•    leverage existing UK investments and enable a challenge-focussed multidisciplinary community to work together for the first time; 
•    inform implementation of the UK Government’s Clean Air Strategy; and 
•    develop new solutions to reduce emissions of atmospheric pollution and protect public health, whilst avoiding perverse consequences. 
 
Programme objectives 
The Clean Air Programme will support multidisciplinary research and innovation to stimulate solutions for clean air through predictive understanding of future air quality challenges, a systems approach to analysis, new technologies and innovative policy and practice interventions to benefit vulnerable groups, improve public health and support clean growth. This will include: 


A.    Systems framework for Clean Air Analysis (WP4 delivered through the Met Office) 
There is an inter-linked chain connecting emissions, atmospheric processes, air quality, its impacts and policy action (figure 1). The links and feedbacks are multidisciplinary and highly inter-dependent. A systems analysis framework is required to connect the data and modelling elements in the chain into a coherent national capability for clean air analysis. This scientific analysis framework will enable research and ensure it is balanced across the chain, while enhancing traceability, scientific and economic analysis and pull though into policy. 
The programme will: 
•    Support a virtual community hub that networks multidisciplinary communities 
•    Develop and initiate the systems analysis framework by establishing requirements, software architecture and implementation plan 
 

Deliver key components of the framework in the areas of meteorology, air quality modelling, open data standards and sharing protocols  
 
B.    Predict future changes in sources, emissions and atmospheric processes (WP1 delivered through NERC on behalf of partner UKRI Research Councils) 
UK emissions are transforming and substantial scientific uncertainty remains in how non-linear atmospheric processes will respond, such as how controls on farming ammonia might change exposure to fine particulate matter, or reductions in domestic solvents would lead to lower ozone, and how human behaviours influence such emissions processes and pathways. Success would deliver proven process-based predictive capability that could quantify trends in sources and emissions, and resulting pollutant concentrations in air, indoors and out, at local, national and trans-boundary scale.  
The programme will: 
•    Advance science to identify subtle emission trends during implementation of the UK Clean Air Zones, phase in of Euro6c and early adoption electric/hybrid vehicles. Integrating field, lab and social data will uniquely enable the UK to quantify impacts of national and local authority–led policy. 

C.    Predict exposure and health impacts of vulnerable groups (WP2A&B delivered through Met Office and NERC on behalf of the UKRI Research Councils) 
Children, elderly and those with underlying health conditions are particularly vulnerable to air pollution. Our lack of understanding of susceptibilities and exposure routes limits our ability to protect them. The aim is to develop innovative techniques to predict exposure of vulnerable groups and determine mechanistic pathways by which air pollution leads to health impacts, examining the actions of different groups to understand how best to mitigate, manage and treat. 
The programme will: 
•    Catalyse early research to decode molecular effects of life-long exposures on health through identifying biomarkers of exposure and effect from established cohorts used to study impacts of air pollution exposure. (WP2A) 
•    Develop pilot informatics approaches that exploit very large public sector data holdings related to emissions, air quality and health, to identify trends, regional variations and impacts for example, attribution of trends to specific factors or identifying associations between lifelong or childhood exposure and health. (WP2A) 
•    Address the critical need for more accurate and reliable low-cost pollution sensors, through interrogating the latest commercially-available sensors in well-characterised field-based sensor-test beds to understand interferences and their reliability. (WP2A) 
•    Address need for high-resolution prediction capabilities to support personal exposure for health impacts, through national and local model resolution and capability developments. (WP2B) 

D.    Catalyse innovation in technology, business models and policy best practice (WP3 delivered through Innovate UK) 
Clean air is a shared responsibility across market sectors and national and local government, however incentives for new innovation are limited. The aim is to catalyse innovation in new and disruptive technologies, create new or reformulated products, and guide changes to business models, Government policies and practice that will provide actionable solutions to the twin challenges of improving air quality and decarbonisation, and help grow UK business competitiveness. 
The programme will: 
•    Deliver an innovation funding competition for UK businesses with solutions to work on product- and service-development and first deployments of technologies to reduce specific pollutant sources set to exceed emissions ceilings targeted in the Clean Air Strategy and grow UK business. 

E.    Evidence the effectiveness and health benefits of solutions (WP5 delivered through NERC on behalf of partner UKRI Research Councils) 
Strong evidence on economic cost, effectiveness, societal acceptance and adoption of clean air solutions is needed for Government and business to take confident action. The aim is to develop metrics needed to robustly evidence costs and benefits of interventions to inform trade-offs and decisions, and integrate them into the analysis framework.  
The programme will: 
•    Develop health impact assessments for potential solutions and future emissions trajectories using improved atmospheric models of air pollution and national emissions. This will provide test cases for the analysis framework and quantify air quality improvements and health benefits at the city level of individual and combinations of potential actions.  
•    Identify and disseminate ‘what works’ to practitioners through targeted policy research, synthesis of research activities, including incorporation of behavioural insights, to identify lessons learned and successful outcomes in regulation, policies and targets and solutions in local and national contexts in urban and rural localities. 


For further information please visit the programme website including the Science Plan.

 
Eligibility

The following criteria must be met by UK organisations submitting a bid against Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) funded Calls to be eligible to apply or be awarded funds against this Call: 
-    Must be a UK operating and registered organisation.  
-    Consortium bids are eligible; a lead partner must be nominated for payment and agreement purposes and all parties must be UK operating and registered organisations. Details of all consortium members must be provided.
-    Funding can only be used to fund new activity for the costs incurred. 
-    The activity must last the full duration of the Grant Award Term specified 
-    There must be a willingness to work with Authority and other organisations and individuals associated with the SPF Programme. 


How to Apply:

The above opportunities are advertised on the Met Office ProContract e-Tendering portal called ProContract.  To access and register your interest you will need to log onto the ProContract portal via this link.

You may need to search for the Call reference DN424739 and DN424761

You will need to register your company (if you have not already done so) and register your interest against the opportunity before you are able to access the tender documents.

If you require guidance or ‘how to’ instructions – see the supplier manuals on the right-hand side of the supplier home page. 

Online Discussions between Bidders and the Met Office: 
There is a Discussions function on ProContract which shall be used to provide all further information regarding this opportunity including any changes to time scales, scope or clarifications. This function must be used by bidders to submit all clarification questions.

 

 

Bids invited for: Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) - UK Climate Resilience 


To bid for these funding opportunities, see notes at the end of this page. 

Please note that these funding opportunities are open to eligible research organisations and businesses only. See below for eligibility criteria.
Bids are invited for a number of separate research opportunities:  
 

Title Amount Call ref. Funding period

Review of climate resilience mainstreaming into regulatory and voluntary standards, national guidance, and other sectoral/industry codes of practice

Bidding deadline: Friday 20 September 2019, 12 noon

£60,000 DN420232 01/11/19-31/08/20

Risk estimates using techniques from catastrophe modelling: UK flood

Bidding deadline: Friday 27 September 2019, 12 noon

£250,000 DN420242 01/11/19-31/03/21

Demonstration of a climate service to address the resilience needs of the UK health sector

Bidding deadline: Friday 20 September 2019, 12 noon

£150,000 DN420172 01/11/19-31/10/20

Development and provision of UK socio economic scenarios for climate vulnerability, impact, adaptation and services research and policy

Bidding deadline: Friday 20 September 2019, 12 noon​​​​​​​

£500,000 DN420214 01/11/19-30/04/21

Climate service prototype development - enhancing the resilience of the water sector to drought events

Bidding deadline: Friday 27 September 2019, 12 noon

£300,000 DN420192 01/11/19-31/03/21

Key Dates
Bidding deadline: see above table
Estimated award of call: October 2019

Summary of project aims

Review of climate resilience mainstreaming into regulatory and voluntary standards, national guidance, and other sectoral/industry codes of practice
A wide range of sectors in the UK that are affected by weather and climate define national guidance standards. These are either mandated, or recommended as good practice. This project will seek to establish the range of national guidance standards which take climate variability and change into account, and to recommend approaches for building updated climate information into the standards. 

Demonstration of a climate service to address the resilience needs of the UK health sector
The Met Office are inviting expressions of interest with a specific focus on health research for the Strategic Priorities Strategic Fund (SPF) UK Climate Resilience Programme. The objective of the call is to fund applied research that addresses the need to connect health, environmental data and information to build UK resilience to climate variability and change.

Risk estimates using techniques from catastrophe modelling: UK flood
The use of catastrophe (CAT) models based on historical weather and climate data is routine within the reinsurance/insurance industry. This project will develop a new methodology for using UK climate projections, specifically those from UKCP18, with CAT modelling techniques. 

Development and provision of UK socio economic scenarios for climate vulnerability, impact, adaptation and services research and policy
To support the research into UK climate risk and resilience, bids are sought to develop a set of detailed future socioeconomic scenarios for the UK. This project will build on work commissioned ahead of the 3rd climate change risk assessment and engage with other SPF Climate Resilience projects as needed to ensure the needs of the research community will be met by the project plan.

Climate service prototype development - enhancing the resilience of the water sector to drought events
The Met Office is inviting bids for funding to demonstrate the application of climate projections in the UK water sector. This work will seek to develop a climate service prototype that assists the UK water sector with the management of climate change.  


Summary of Climate Resilience Programme aims

How do we make our cities and regions resilient to climate change? What are the opportunities to manage adaptation to deliver improvements to society and economic growth? These are broad and urgent questions for decision makers from national to local scales, in Government, business and society. They present huge challenges because the knowledge and information required to support robust decisions is largely unavailable. There are two major knowledge gaps:
1. The robust characterisation and quantification of climate-related risks in decision-relevant terms.
2. The development of effective adaptation strategies that deliver resilience, improve lives, and promote economic growth.


The need and urgency for building resilience: It is widely recognised that the impacts of extreme weather and climate change permeate throughout society affecting both lives and livelihoods. UK flooding events in 2007 affected 55,000 homes, killed 13 people and cost the UK economy £3.2 billion. Global impacts of extreme weather events also affect the UK, for example international food production. The situation can be exacerbated when events are compounded, for example the co- occurrence of hot and dry summers. As the climate warms, extreme events and the ensuing costs to society will increase. As noted by Lord Krebs, former Chair, Adaptation sub-Committee of the Committee on Climate Change, the UK has a ‘fragmented multidisciplinary research community’ who have failed to work across disciplines, and sectors, to confront the risks we face from climate change.


Exploiting the opportunities arising from adaptation and green growth: There is an opportunity during the transition to a low carbon future to exploit the co-benefits of climate resilient development. Alongside increasing climate resilience, we can design better environments that promote improved quality of life and that facilitate new economic opportunities. A particular opportunity is to stimulate the development of a new generation of 'Climate Services' that will exploit novel understandings including behavioural insights at all levels to inform policy and regulations, technology innovations and engineering solutions needed to build resilient futures across the UK and internationally.


In wave 1 the UK Climate Resilience investment will nurture a new multi-disciplinary community, develop a novel risk quantification framework, and stimulate coordinated research to develop and assess adaptation options. This research will underpin the co-production of pilot climate services. In wave 2, further UK Climate Resilience investment would then enable the delivery of operational climate services in strategic sectors.


The objectives of this investment are:
1. The robust characterisation, quantification and communication of climate-related risks.
Climate risk is an integration of weather and climate hazards (e.g. heavy rainfall event), the impacts of these hazards across the natural and human environment (e.g. flooding), vulnerability (e.g. inadequate flood defences) and exposure (e.g. assets built on a flood plain). The aim is to develop robust approaches, including the software tools, needed to quantify current and future risk in decision relevant metrics. This involves fundamental research challenges including: end to end understanding of key processes and uncertainties; understanding behavioural responses at individual, community, regional and (inter)governmental levels to climate risk; providing climate information at relevant spatial scales; different risk communications routes; improving the skill and reliability of near-term climate forecasts; combining hazard-vulnerability-exposure information into risk metrics; and perception of risk by decision makers.
2. Develop risk-informed resilience and optimise the opportunities from a transition to a low carbon future
Building a low carbon future presents opportunities to both increase national resilience and provide co-benefits including improvements to wellbeing and economic opportunities. The fundamental research needed includes: design of decision frameworks to balance between protection, co- benefits and costs; development of new adaptation approaches; behavioural changes; and monitoring of the effectiveness of adaptation.
3. Co-produce pilot end-to-end climate services
Climate services are at an early stage of development and new research will: develop novel co- production processes; develop industry quality standards; and investigate governance approaches and design improved monitoring.

 

Eligibility
The following criteria must be met by UK organisations submitting a bid against Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) funded calls to be eligible to apply or be awarded funds against this call:
- Must be a UK operating and registered organisation.
- Consortium bids are eligible; a lead partner must be nominated for payment and agreement purposes and all parties must be UK operating and registered organisations. Details of all consortium members must be provided.
- Funding can only be used to fund new activity for the costs incurred.
- The activity must last the full duration of the Grant Award Term specified
- There must be a willingness to work with the Authority and other organisations and individuals associated with the SPF Programme.

How to Apply:
The above funding opportunities are advertised on the Met Office ProContract e-Tendering portal called ProContract.  To access you will need to log onto the ProContract portal via this link.

You may need to search for the Call references provided above.

You will need to register your company (if you have not already done so) and register your interest against the opportunity before you are able to access the tender documents.

If you require guidance or ‘how to’ instructions – see the supplier manuals on the right-hand side of the supplier home page. 

Online Discussions between Bidders and the Met Office: 
There is a Discussions function on ProContract which shall be used to provide all further information regarding this opportunity including any changes to time scales, scope or clarifications. This function must be used by bidders to submit all clarification questions.