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Dr Carl Boardman

Dr Carl P Boardman

Profile summary

  • Central Academic Staff
  • Lecturer in Energy and Environmental Sciences
  • Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics
  • School of Engineering & Innovation
  • carl.boardman

Professional biography

Lecturer in Energy and Environmental Sciences at The Open University; researching the environmental impact of waste management processes and end-of-life materials. Background in biogeochemistry (PhD) with expertise in carbon cycling and natural ecosystems. I teach on the MSc in Environmental Management (F65) qualification and undertake the Post Graduate Research Tutor role (PhD administration) for the School of Engineering and Innovation.

I am a member of the Integrated Waste Systems (IWS) research group at The Open University, which aims to  promote sustainable ways to manage waste and resources through a better understanding of analytical and social sciences in the area;


I am a multidisciplinary scientist therefore my research activities span a number of disciplines and additional research groups at the OU. I am affiliated with the Smart Materials research group and Materials Engineering research group;


Research interests

Current research interests and activities include:

  1. The quantification and breakdown of plastic materials within natural and managed environments;
  2. Greenhouse emissions from waste management processes;
  3. The use of satellites for earth observation

Current PhD students:

  1. Ahmed Nawaz - Microbiology degradation of plastics in aquatic environments.
  2. Nara Davaasuren - Monitoring pollution in the worlds oceans using satellites.
  3. Javier Ruiz-Ramos - Monitoring deforestation worldwide using radar satellite data.
  4. Alice Fraser-McDonald - Landfill site trees: Potential source of sink of greenhouse gases?

Contract research and consultancy

Biodegradability testing

  • Aerobic - Dynamic respiration tests (DR4); biodegradability plastic testing (EN 13432); PAS100 stability test; real-world simulations - terrestrial soils and aquatic environments.
  • Anaerobic - Biochemical and residual methane potential test (BMc - RBP); real-world simulations, e.g. anoxic soils, landfill simulations and oceanic sedmiments. 

Teaching interests

Managing for Environmental Sustainability (Chair - 2016 onwards)

This modules increases students understanding of delivering and supporting sustainability management. It takes a multidisciplinary perspective on resources, sustainability and health and safety management, through a greater understanding of strategy, policy, data collection and knowledge management.

Environmental Monitoring and Protection (support role when required)

This module teaches different environmental monitoring techniques for water, noise, air, and wastes; how to model and interpret the impacts of pollutants; and the techniques available to eliminate the pollutants.

Impact and engagement


2015 - Technology advisory board on biodegradability standards (single-use carrier bag levy).



Biodegradability standards for carrier bags and plastic films in aquatic environments: a critical review (2018)
Harrison, Jesse P.; Boardman, Carl; O'Callaghan, Kenneth; Delort, Anne-Marie and Song, Jim
Royal Society Open Science, 5, Article 171792
A culture-independent and culture-dependent study of the bacteria community from the bedrock soil interface (2015-12-15)
Olsson-Francis, Karen; Pearson, Victoria; Boardman, Carl; Schofield, Paul; Oliver, Anna and Summers, Stephen
Advances in Microbiology, 5(13) (pp. 842-857)
A mesocosm study of the effect of restoration on methane (CH4) emissions from blanket peat (2014-10-12)
Green, Sophie; Baird, Andy J.; Boardman, Carl P. and Gauci, Vincent
Wetlands Ecology and Management, 22(5) (pp. 523-537)
Reduction of the temperature sensitivity of minerotrophic fen methane emissions by simulated glacial atmospheric carbon dioxide starvation (2013-04-10)
Boardman, Carl P.; Gauci, Vincent; Fox, Andrew; Blake, Stephen and Beerling, David J.
Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, 118(2) (pp. 462-470)
Contrasting wetland CH4 emission responses to simulated glacial atmospheric CO2 in temperate bogs and fens (2011-12)
Boardman, Carl P.; Gauci, Vincent; Watson, Jonathan S.; Blake, Stephen and Beerling, David J.
New Phytologist, 192(4) (pp. 898-911)
Aerosol evolution from a busy road in North-West England (2009-02)
Davison, Brian; Whyatt, Duncan and Boardman, Carl
Meteorologische Zeitschrift, 18(1) (pp. 55-60)
Detecting microplastics pollution in world oceans using SAR remote sensing (2018-05-14)
Davaasuren, Narangerel; Marino, Armando; Ackermann, Nicolas; Alparone, Matteo; Nunziata, Ferdinando and Boardman, Carl
In : IGARSS 2018: IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (22-27 Jul 2018, Valencia, Spain)
Exploring The Use Of SAR Remote Sensing To Detect Microplastics Pollution In The Oceans (2018-05-01)
Davaasuren, Narangerel; Marino, Armando; Boardman, Carl; Ackermann, Nicolas; Alparone, Matteo and Nunziata, Ferdinando
In : 5th Advances in SAR Oceanography Workshop (SeaSAR 2018) (7-11 May 2018, Frascati, Italy)
Polarimetry SAR detectors for monitoring Mediterranean forest fires events (2018-03-13)
Ruiz-Ramos, Javier; Marino, Armando and Boardman, Carl P.
In : Wavelength conference 2018 (12-14 Mar 2018, University of Sheffield)
Plastic Microbial Acclimation and Optimisation of Composting and Anaerobic Digestion Processes may Improve Degradation Times (2017-10-02)
Boardman, C. P.; Summers, S. S.; Olsson-Francis, K. and Gladding, T.
In : 16th International Waste Management and Landfill Symposium (Sardinia 2017) (2-6 Oct 2017, S. Margherita di Pula, Sardinia, Italy,)
The Use Of Dynamic Life Cycle Assessment To Evaluate The Long Term Climate Change Impacts Of Waste Management Processes (2017-10-02)
Burnley, Stephen and Boardman, Carl
In : 16th International Waste Management and Landfill Symposium (Sardinia 2017) (2-6 Oct 2017, S. Margherita di Pula, Sardinia, Italy,)
Greenhouse gas emissions from non-recyclable residual household waste within domestic wheeled bins (2015-10-05)
Boardman, C.; Burnley, S.; Gauci, V. and Gladding, T.
In : 15th International Waste Management and Landfill Symposium (Sardinia 2015) (5-9 Oct 2015, S. Margherita di Pula, Sardinia, Italy)
Wetland methane emission response to last glacial maximum atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration (2008-12)
Boardman, C.; Gauci, V. and Beerling, D.
In : American Geophysical Union, Fall Meeting 2008 (15-18 Dec 2008, San Francisco, USA)
Using Sentinel 1-SAR for Monitoring Long Term Variation in Burnt Forest Areas ()
Ruiz-Ramos, Javier; Marino, Armando and Boardman, Carl P.
In : IGARSS 2018 - 2018 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (22-27 Jul 2018, Valencia, Spain) (pp. 4901-4904)
Review of standards for biodegradable plastic bags. (2015-12-17)
O'Callaghan, K.; Boardman, Carl; Murphy, Richard; Harrison, Jesse; Kosior, Ed; Song, Jim and Delort, Anne-Marie
Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs, London.
Evidence: Biofilter performance and operation as related to commercial composting (2013-04)
Frederickson, J.; Boardman, C. P.; Gladding, T. L.; Simpson, A. E.; Howell, G. and Sgouridis, F.
Environment Agency, Bristol.
Investigation of peatland restoration (grip blocking) techniques to achieve best outcomes for methane and greenhouse gas emissions/balance. Controlled Environment (Mesocosm) Experiment. Final Report to Defra. Project code SP1202 (2011)
Green, S; Boardman, Carl; Baird, A and Gauci, Vincent