By 2050 there are predicted to be shortages in the global supply of essential minerals used in synthetic fertilisers; consequently, fertiliser prices are rising sharply. This is coupled with patterns of agricultural intensification whereby increased fertiliser use is driven in part by increased pressures from concerns over food security and a changing climate. With storm frequency predicted to increase as a result of climate change there is elevated risk of nutrient (and thus economic) loss from land to aquatic systems, which threatens further the sustainability of valuable ecosystem services provided by clean and safe water in the UK. Now, more than ever, there is a need for an integrated research agenda that couples the remediation of anthropogenically impacted aquatic environments with a strategy for efficiencies in novel resource recovery from waste. Across a diverse range of eutrophic waters the assimilation of nutrients in aquatic plant and algal biomass (AP&AB) provides a significant waste stream to target for recovery and re-use, and thus the delivery of multiple benefits to society.