The Agriculture and Environment Research Cluster

The Agriculture and Environment Research Cluster (AERC), led by the University of Canterbury, seeks to improve NZ’s economy by enhancing our ability to produce healthy food in an environment that is consistent with the image we wish to portray in overseas markets. This is achieved through transdisciplinary research on the ‘circular economy’ as it pertains to agriculture including creating value from biological wastes, the rehabilitation of degraded soils, reducing the entry of contaminants such as cadmium into food products, and ensuring that the nutrients contained in biological wastes provide economic and ecological benefits instead of exacerbating the degradation of New Zealand’s waterways. Circular economies in agricultural systems will be generated by improving efficiencies of nutrient and pesticide application as well as capturing contaminants that exit the system using, for example, soil conditioners or NZ native ecosystems that are established in agricultural landscapes.

The AERC develops new environmental tools and technologies through transdisciplinary collaboration of partners from New Zealand Universities, Crown Research Institutes, and environmental consultancies. The AERC has active collaboration with international partners. We work on both local and global environmental issues.

Cluster organisations


Brett Robinson
School of Physical and Chemical Sciences
University of Canterbury
20 Kirkwood Ave, Ilam
Christchurch 8041
New Zealand

Phone or sms: +64 (0)21 288 5655

Email: brett [dot] robinson [at] canterbury [dot] ac [dot] nz