Planning for climate resilient energy infrastructure in the coastal zone


The EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Net Zero Maritime Energy solutions (N0MES) has a 4-year funded PhD place available for an exceptional researcher. With the support of the University of Liverpool (UoL), Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) and 33 maritime energy sector partners, N0MES PGRs will pursue new, engineering-centred, interdisciplinary research to address four vital net zero challenges currently facing the North West, the UK and beyond:

a) Energy generation using maritime-based renewable energy (e.g. offshore wind, tidal, wave, floating solar, hydrogen, CCS);

b) Distributing energy from offshore to onshore, including port- and hinterland-side impacts and opportunities;

c) Addressing the short- and long-term environmental impacts of offshore and maritime

environment renewable energy generation, distribution and storage; and

d) Decommissioning and lifetime extension of existing energy and facilities.

Project Description

Climate-resilient infrastructure is essential to withstand and adapt to climate change impacts, including rising sea levels and extreme weather events. Anticipating coastal and nearshore evolution in response to future sea levels and storminess is crucial for ensuring the reliability, sustainability, and adaptability of existing and future critical energy infrastructure. This proactive approach safeguards against disruptions and supports long-term energy security. Enhancing the longevity of existing energy infrastructure and planning future infrastructure against climate-related hazards involves comprehensive morphological and climate assessments. Strategic decision-making tools aid optimal future infrastructure placement to minimize climate risks and identify sites for biodiversity net gains. As coastal environments become less naturalized, energy infrastructure must serve multiple purposes, potentially through eco-friendly designs like artificial reefs or vegetated buffers, which provide habitats for diverse marine life.

This project will develop a decision support tool for designing climate-resilient energy infrastructure tailored to the challenges anticipated by 2100. The project aims to locate vulnerable areas of current infrastructure susceptible to coastal change and determine locations for future infrastructure to minimize risks, support biodiversity net gain, and promote coastal development. Research will integrate regional morphological monitoring data, numerical modelling techniques and climate projections to enhance the durability, sustainability and effectiveness of energy systems in the face of evolving climate conditions via the following objectives:

  • Collation and analysis of regional coastal and nearshore monitoring data to identify patterns and recurring trends in erosion or accretion.
  • Application of morphological and hydrodynamic models at strategic sites to assess conditions which pose a risk to coastal infrastructure.
  • Integrate coastal modelling and real-time monitoring data into a decision support tool enable users with different priorities to explore evolving coastal dynamics.
  • Novel visualisation and quantification of future uncertainty and variation in morphological change to support informed decision-making and effective risk management in climate-resilient infrastructure planning.

The desk-based project will provide the student with a unique opportunity to work with large coastal monitoring datasets, and develop skills in numerical modelling, coding, and web design.



We want all of our staff and Students to feel that Liverpool is an inclusive and welcoming environment that actively celebrates and encourages diversity. We are committed to working with students to make all reasonable project adaptations including supporting those with caring responsibilities, disabilities or other personal circumstances. For example, if you have a disability you may be entitled to a Disabled Students Allowance on top of your studentship to help cover the costs of any additional support that a person studying for a doctorate might need as a result.

We believe everyone deserves an excellent education and encourage students from all backgrounds and personal circumstances to apply.

Applicant Eligibility

Candidates will have, or be due to obtain, a Master’s Degree or equivalent from a reputable University in an appropriate field of Engineering. Exceptional candidates with a First Class Bachelor’s Degree in an appropriate field will also be considered.


Application Process

Candidates wishing to apply should complete the University of Liverpool application form [How to apply for a PhD - University of Liverpool] applying for a PhD in Environmental Sciences and uploading: Degree Certificates & Transcripts, an up-to-date CV, two academic references and a supporting statement [maximum 300 words] detailing; what inspires you within this project, how your skill set matches the project, up to 3 examples showing your commitment to science, piece of science that excites you & anything else to support your application.


Candidates wishing to discuss the research project should contact the primary supervisor , Charlotte Lyddon  [], those wishing to discuss the application process should discuss this with the CDT Manager Matt Fulton [].

Tel. No. for Enquiries:  0151 794 3811



Open to students worldwide

Funding information

Funded studentship

The EPSRC funded Studentship will cover full tuition fees of £4,786 per year and pay a maintenance grant for 4 years, starting at the UKRI minimum of £19,237 pa. for 2024-2025. The Studentship also comes with access to additional funding in the form of a research training support grant which is available to fund conference attendance, fieldwork, internships etc.

EPSRC Studentships are available to any prospective student wishing to apply including international students. Up to 30% of our cohort can comprise of international students and they will not be charged the fee difference between UK and international rate.



  1. Dong et al., 2022.
  2. Brown et al., 2018.
  3. Trebilco et al., 2022.
  4. O’Leary et al., 2023.