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UnEarthed. Explore the world at your feet

event for
anyone of
any age!

This 17-19 November, meet the people on a daily quest to answer the biggest questions on Earth.

How do we look after our coastlines? Can we make the air we breathe better for us? Can we make natural disasters less disastrous? What can we do to get more food out of the same soil? How can we generate energy for the future?

We are the Natural Environment Research Council. We fund the science tackling these questions and more. The answers inform the choices we make as individuals, as governments and all the way up to the UN.

Come to Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh and meet the people exploring the world at our feet. Find out how the sea makes a wave, see if you can stop a flood and check who else is living in your clothes...

Environmental science isn't just about the planet. It's about your world.

Family helping with an experiment Exhibitor demonstrating an infrared camera

Useful information

Opening times

Day Hours Details
Friday 17 November 9:00am - 5:30pm Free entry to UnEarthed exhibition only
Saturday 18 November 10:00am - 5:30pm Free entry to UnEarthed exhibition and the Dynamic Earth science museum
Sunday 19 November 10:00am - 5:30pm Free entry to UnEarthed exhibition and the Dynamic Earth science museum
Monday 20 November Closed to the public, open to schools only

 Please note the last entry will be at 4:00pm each day.

Location and how to get here

The UnEarthed showcase will be at Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh. Visit their website for more details on taking public transport, parking, walking and cycling to the venue - external link.

footsteps graphic

Email newsletter

To sign up for updates about this event, and other future NERC events, please submit your email address below. Rest assured, any information you provide will be handled in accordance with our privacy policy - external link.

Take part

Operation Weather Rescue: Ben Nevis

NERC-funded scientists are on a mission to rescue two million pieces of 'lost' weather data gathered more than 100 years ago by intrepid volunteers on Britain's highest mountain.

But they need your help. For more than 20 years, a team of Victorian meteorologists stationed on Ben Nevis recorded eight pieces of information about the weather every hour, day and night, 365 days a year.

Now known as the 'Weathermen of Ben Nevis', they measured temperature, pressure, rainfall, sunshine, cloudiness, wind strength and wind direction from 1883 and 1904. Hourly data was also taken at sea level at nearby Fort William. All this information was compiled in five hefty volumes published by the Royal Society of Edinburgh between 1890 and 1910.

Today, researchers are asking for people in Scotland to help 'digitise' the data. From the original tables, the public can type the information into a growing database. Unearthing this data will shed light on how our climate is changing, bringing the past back to life to help understand the weather today and in the future.

And the clock is ticking. Operation Weather Rescue: Ben Nevis is taking place in the run-up to UnEarthed. If all two million data points are logged in time, we will present all the information in a fun and exciting way to display at the event, bringing the weather on Ben Nevis back to life for all who have taken part and many more.

Join our mission and take part today by digitising 'lost' data at Zooniverse - external link - and follow the instructions on the tutorial. And learn more at the Operation Weather Rescue: Ben Nevis exhibit at UnEarthed.

The project is led by climate scientist Professor Ed Hawkins, of the National Centre for Atmospheric Science and the University of Reading, and supported by Marjory Roy, former Superintendent of Met Office Edinburgh and author of The Weathermen of Ben Nevis, a fascinating insight into the work and lives of those who gave their time on the top of the mountain.


Picture It: Your Environment photo competition

Environmental science is vital to us and the health of the planet. From tracking invasive species, to cleaning up the air where we live, to keeping the lights on or getting food on our plates. It affects us all, every day.

FoxThe Picture It: Your Environment photo competition is an opportunity for you to get creative and explore how you interact with your environment.

Your photo could be of a rock pool, a beautiful forest, or even mould growing around an old window frame. NERC wants to see photos that show the beauty of the environment and environmental science and its impact on you.

All entries must be accompanied by a 1-2 sentence summary describing how the photo captures the effect of the environment or environmental science on you.

Tweet about the competition using #Enviromoment - external link.

Twelve entries will be shortlisted by our esteemed panel of judges: Fiona Shields (Head of Pictures at The Guardian), Professor Iain Stewart (BBC presenter and lecturer at the University of Plymouth) and NERC's Ned Garnett (Associate Director of Research). Images will be judged on their originality, visual appeal, the summary you provide and how they capture the impact of environmental science on you. The twelve images will be displayed at our UnEarthed showcase in Edinburgh, where visitors will be able to vote for their favourite. The winners will be announced on 22 November 2017.

PRIZES: The winner of each category will receive an expenses-paid invitation to the ceremonial naming of the RRS Sir David Attenborough - external link - in autumn 2018.

The competition is open to all UK residents aged 11 and over. The three categories are: 11-17 years old, 18 and over, and NERC (NERC head office and centre staff and NERC-funded academics).

Entries must be submitted digitally via the online entry form - external link. Please read the terms and conditions before entering.

The closing date for entries is 13 October 2017. Good luck!



You probably know all about things that make our air bad - like cars, planes, burning fuels... Now come and find out about what people are doing to make it better! We fund amazing science to understand what effects bad air has on people and the planet, what causes it and what we can do about it.



Our land gives us food and water, energy, minerals, and even helps us feel good. But, as the number of people grows in the UK and around the world, we're using up these supplies more quickly. Researchers are finding out how we can make the most of them and secure them for the future. That's good news for people and good news for the mindboggling number of other species we're connected to in everyday life!



Where should you build a windfarm? Could we get round-the-clock energy from waves and tides? Is it possible for the country to make more money and be cleaner at the same time? Meet the people working hard to answer these questions and more, to make sure we have enough energy to keep the lights on and the wheels turning.



Did you know that what people do affects how much it rains? And the way we build our cities and the way we farm our land affects how much it floods. Global warming can make our lakes and rivers happy homes for poisonous algal blooms and unhappy for native fish and plants. Come and find out about the latest work to protect and get the best out of our most vital natural resource.

About us

About NERC

The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) funds the best environmental research in the world. What our scientists find out helps people make decisions about how to live in our changing world.

About BGS

The British Geological Survey (BGS) - a part of NERC - develops the nation's understanding of its geology and keeps amazing records of the subsurface to improve policymaking, enhance national wealth and reduce risk.

About CEH

The Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (CEH) - a part of NERC - is a world-class research organisation that looks at land and freshwater ecosystems and how they interact with the atmosphere.


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