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Dave Reay

Dave Reay

Dave Reay, University of Edinburgh


Prof Dave Reay, Chair in Carbon Management & Education

Climate-smart Food – New Open Access book for 2019 (published by Palgrave)

Online Masters in Carbon Management

The Online MSc in Carbon Management at the University of Edinburgh

Teaching on the MSc Carbon Management

Climate Change Impact Videos from Online Carbon Management Students

New Books

Climate-smart Food – Palgrave Open Access and out now.

Nitrogen and Climate Change – Palgrave Out Now.

Wonderstuff, lecture at University of Edinburgh

Wonderstuff, TEDx talk

Methane and Climate Change – Earthscan Out now.

Your Planet Needs You! A Kid’s Guide to Going Green Macmillan Children’s Books. Out now.

MSc programme

MSc in Carbon Management

: Winner, ‘Best Feedback in Business School’, EUSA teaching awards 2013.

: Runner-up, ‘TeachFirst Innovative Teaching Award’, EUSA teaching awards 2011.

: Winner, ‘PwC Teaching Employable Skills Award’, EUSA teaching awards 2010.

Out Now In Paperback and E-book

Climate Change Begins at Home – Life on the Two-way Street of Global Warming. Published by Macmillan.

Translated into Japanese and Korean. Shortlisted for Times Higher Young Academic Author of the Year.

Other books now out

Greenhouse Gas Sinks Reay, Hewitt, Smith and Grace (Eds). CABI Publishing.


Dave Reay studied Marine
Biology at Liverpool University and graduated in 1994. He went
on to gain a PhD with the British Antarctic Survey and Essex University studying the response of
Southern Ocean algae and bacteria to global warming. After
gaining his doctorate he continued working as a post-doc at Essex,
investigating the impact of land-use on the soil methane sink.
In 2001 he moved to Edinburgh University to investigate emissions
of the greenhouse gas ‘nitrous oxide’ from agriculture, then carbon fluxes in forests, and went on to become a Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Fellow examining greenhouse gas emissions from wetlands and agriculture. In 2008 Dave became the university’s first lecturer in carbon management and became a senior lecturer in 2009, a Reader in 2013, and was appointed Chair in Carbon Management & Education in 2014. He is designer and editor
of the climate change science website Greenhouse Gas Online and of the Southern
Ocean: Antarctic Seas and Wildlife website
. He enjoys running (on an annual basis), Test Match Special, and
writing stories for his daughters.

Research Interests

  • Greenhouse gas sinks and interactions
  • Nitrous oxide emissions from agriculture (IPCC input: revision of EF5) Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories)
  • Methane oxidation and production in soils
  • Communicating science to the public
  • Microbial ecology, incl. that of methanotrophs, methanogens, nitrifiers and denitrifiers
  • Diffuse water pollution
  • Land use impacts on greenhouse gas fluxes
  • Climate change impacts on land use and adaptation strategies
  • Carbon dioxide emission from soils and biomass
  • Global methane budgets
  • Temperature dependence of microbial activity and nutrient uptake
  • Climate change impacts and mitigation through individual action

Research Groups

Global Change

Centre for Science Education

Centre for Distance Education

Geography and the Lived Environment


  • Programme director of the online MSc in Carbon Management at University of Edinburgh (2014-2019
  • Assistant Principal, Global Environment and Society Academy (2014-17)
  • Senior Fellow, Higher Education Academy
  • Principal Investigator, ClimateXChange
  • Academic Advisory Panel on Rural Policy, Scottish Government
  • Climate Emergency Response Group (CERG)
  • Farming 1.5 Committee
  • Reviewer for the journals Nature, Nature Geoscience, Nature Climate Change, Nature Reports Climate Change, Soil Biology and Biochemistry, Atmospheric Environment, Global Change Biology, FEMS Microbiology Letters, Environmental Research Letters, Plant and Soil, Environmental Science and Technology, PLoS, Climate Research, Global Environmental Change, Journal of Environmental Quality, Water, Air and Soil Pollution
  • EPIS academic mentor
  • External reviewer for DEFRA, the Natural Environment Research Council, the Royal Society, the National Science Foundation, the British Council, the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Economic and Social Research Council
  • Expert witness, House of Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee
  • Reviewer and columnist for the Times Higher Education Supplement
  • Expert witness, Scottish Parliament Transport, Infrastructure and Climate Change Committee
  • Expert reviewer, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (AR5, SR1.5, AR4, SRLCC, Emission Inventories)
  • Expert reviewer, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP, N2O)
  • External examiner, University of Oxford (2014-17)
  • External examiner, University of Aberdeen (2011-14)
  • Climate change consultant for Learning and Teaching Scotland
  • Climate change consultant for the Life Centre, Newcastle, UK
  • Author for the Encyclopedia of Earth, National Council for Science and the Environment
  • Reviewer for CABI Publishing
  • Reviewer for Earthscan Publishing
  • External reviewer, Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology
  • Advisor, ‘Reducing Scottish greenhouse gas emissions’. Audit Scotland.
  • Advisory committee, British Council Scotland (2008-2014)
  • Member of the British Council
  • Member of the Forum on Science and Technology for Sustainability
  • Member of the British Association for the Advancement of Science
  • Lead author, European Nitrogen Assessment
  • Editorial board, Carbon Management
  • Editorial board, Atmosphere (2017-19)
  • Editorial board, Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems

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