Young scientists float new carbon capture plans - Updated

By Colin Ricketts - 15 Sep 2011 17:5:0 GMT
Young scientists float new carbon capture plans - Updated

An international group of young scientists has been supported by one of the world's most famous companies to try and find new approaches to carbon capture and storage (CCS).

The Lloyd's Register Educational Trust (LRET) paid for 19 researchers from around the world to meet at Southampton University to look at the new industry, which could play a vital part in mitigating the effects of climate change.

Lloyds Register (LR) was founded in 1760 in the same London coffee house that also gave its name to the insurers Lloyds of London. LR is a risk assessment and assurance group which has expanded from its original maritime business to cover other high risk businesses, including many in the energy field.

"There is a growing industry consensus that CCS is part of the solution to global warming. What we also have come to realise is that the challenges facing its development are as much political and social as they are technical, if not more so," said Richard Sadler, the Chief Executive Officer of Lloyd's Register. "In sponsoring the collegium, the LRET created an environment where the engineers of the future could begin addressing the socio-technical challenges of today. The results were impressive and, as our mandate is to benefit the public, I can think of no better use for LRET funds."

Sadler chaired a panel of industrialists and scholars who heard what ideas the collegium had come up with including: injecting liquefied CO2 into Chinese underwater caverns or worked out gas and oil fields, and the building of a 'Green Town' to highlight CCS innovations.

With China now the world's largest CO2 emitter, projects from that country were of particular interest.

The expert panel chose as their winner a project to take both power generation from remote gas fields and the related CCS offshore - transporting captured CO2 is one of the major headaches for this newly burgeoning industry.

"This endeavour shows that we can generate solutions to the global problem of climate change through dialogue, analysis and discussions between and amongst the world community," said event organiser Professor Ajit Shenoi. "The young scholars have identified the ways and means for practical solutions to this challenging problem."

You can read the full reports of all the collegium's proposals here. LRET has now agreed to sponsor a further two collegiums on subjects yet to be decided.

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