4 May 2011 2:30pm - 4:30pm CRASSH, 17 Mill Lane, Cambridge



Hauke Riesch, Chi Kong Chyong, David Reiner (Judge Business School, University of Cambridge)



Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is a relatively little-known and understood technology intended to reduce carbon emissions from conventional power plants by capturing their CO2 emissions and storing them deep underground in depleted natural gas reservoirs or other suitable sites.


The NearCO2 project has been trying to find out perceptions of specific projects that are currently being planned in five European countries through a large scale survey on members of the local and national public as well as selected stakeholder groups (journalists, local politicians, members of environmental NGOs). The aim of the research is is to define public information needs regarding CCS and unravel the factors shaping public opinion about CCS. What is particularly needed is an understanding of how the perceptions of CCS relate to the locality where specific projects are being planned, and what are the particular local contingencies that shape reactions towards CCS. The survey finds for example that knowledge and acceptance about CCS are more negative the closer the respondents live to the proposed projects, and that specific projects are perceived as more negative than the technology in general. Worries about the risks of CCS are predominantly about unforeseen events, whether the technology can even in theory be tested and how we can know what the storage will be like in 100 years. We conclude that any planned CCS project will need to take into account the local contingencies and needs, as well as think about communicating and being honest about risks that are not easily assessable through conventional risk assessments, since these often fail to capture the unknowns and “unknown unknowns” that people are worried about


Open to all. No registration required.

Part of the Science, Technology and Bio-Social Studies Forum (STBS) seminar series. 
For more information about the group please visit the link on the right hand side of this page.



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