YP and Student Lounge, 3rd Floor, Riu Plaza Hotel
Wednesday, 6 December – Friday, 8 December 2023, 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. | Madrid, Spain
“Be an Energy Geoscientist – make a difference!” Why is this an important message? How do we inspire, recruit and retain the next generation of geoscientists? These questions are critical in the context of the current crisis in geoscience, climate change and the energy demands of the future.
Why is energy geoscience important? The journey from the Industrial Revolution, the advent of the petroleum era to the energy transition of today, illustrates the important role geoscience, and its associated breakthrough technologies, have played in everyday life.
Climate change is undoubtedly the major challenge for the world and energy geoscientists will be key enablers to sustaining and improving the quality of life globally. The world is moving towards a climate-neutral (net zero) energy system that needs to be secure, reliable, sustainable, and affordable. As the energy transition gathers pace, the demand for carbon neutral hydrocarbons, particularly gas, will continue to increase as an integral part of the energy supply mix. However, the proportion of renewable low carbon energy sources, as a percentage of the total, will expand significantly.
Education, training and development of skilled geoscientists, able to effectively and efficiently undertake integrated subsurface analysis of geological systems, is essential across the spectrum of activities from sustainable oil and gas production, subsurface storage, the placement of wind turbines to geothermal energy sources.
Whilst good geoscience underpins most of the energy solutions for today and tomorrow, there is a crisis in geoscience. There has been a persistent decline in the number of students enrolling in university geoscience undergraduate and postgraduate taught courses. This applies to both domestic UK and international students. How did we get here? Is the limited public, schools and media recognition of the importance of geoscience in everyday life around the world playing a significant role?
How do we make change happen? What does success look like? Two groups, initiated in the UK, are designed to inspire and attract students to geoscience in their journey through school, university, into employment and their subsequent career development. The activities of the GeoNetZero Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT), the Energy Transition Centre for Masters’ Training (CMT) and the affiliated UNESCO International Geoscience Programme provide a model for the way in which academia, industry and government can collaborate effectively to address these challenges in geoscience through various initiatives including a Geoscience Ambassador Programme; Industry Placements; and bespoke MSc and PhD research and training.
Collaboration, instilling new ways of working, being flexible, adaptable and agile is the key to success.
The future is exciting – “Be an Energy Geoscientist – make a difference!”
Hotel Riu Plaza España
C/ Gran Vía, 84