About Forth ERA
Partnering for productivity
Forth ERA has been established through a partnership between the University and BT, with EE’s powerful 5G network allowing the rich data to be captured and processed. It is co-designed and co-developed with a wide range of regional partners, to ensure the platform delivers regional value. This is complemented by a web-based software platform and toolkit designed by 3DEO, which provides a single point of access to real-time environmental data and analytics.
The system provides an open data resource centre, a ‘living lab’ that allows real-time analysis of environmental data and analytics across the Forth river estuary. The Forth is an area with a diverse economic footprint: from agricultural landscapes to urban residential areas and heavy industry.
The ability to analyse live data on this scale will facilitate world-leading scientific research, support local businesses, public and private sector partners, promoting further efficiencies in environmental management and regulation, and stimulating business innovation in support of Scotland’s transition to a net zero carbon society.
In the first phase of the programme we demonstrated how providing additional information on the quality and quantity of water across the continuum of inland to coastal waters can support and inform the actions of businesses and regulators across the Forth Valley.
- provide additional ways to monitor water quality in drinking water reservoirs
- provide near real-time forecasts of bathing water quality
- provide early warning and monitoring of floods
- provide real time data on water temperature to help inform the brewing and distilling sector
Over the next two years, the programme will expand significantly to develop a full catchment design, enabling that critical system scale understanding and providing real time data sets on multiple themes including:
- carbon landscapes
- climate extremes
- protecting biodiversity
- clean air
- sustainable waters
- engaging citizens
For example, we will help to support a wide range of regional parameters including: peatland restoration, water quality/quantity, flooding, air quality, bathing quality and support emerging themes in biodiversity. In doing so, the programme will support communities, local businesses and public sector partners, helping to drive forward a sustainable and inclusive economic recovery.
The technology being deployed through Forth-ERA can be applied in a wide range of settings and across multiple sectors: from agriculture and fisheries, and food and drink, to shipping and navigation, biodiversity and conservation, oil and gas, renewables and low carbon, green tourism and heritage, local and national governance and public health.
As a global exemplar of green recovery, which is easily scaled and could be replicated elsewhere, the programme has the potential to offer intelligent, data-led solutions as businesses, policymakers and regulators across the world make the transition to a more sustainable future.
The Forth-ERA programme is the first flagship programme of Scotland’s International Environment Centre, established as part of the Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Region Deal. The Centre will position Scottish research and innovation at the forefront of international efforts to pursue economic productivity through a shift to cleaner, greener growth.