NERC funding research at Keele
Working alongside leading businesses in the oil and gas sector to improve our skills base is vital to the success of the government's industrial strategy."
NERC is funding research at Keele University to develop skills and technologies, aimed at helping the oil and gas sector put environmental science at the heart of responsible management of our planet.
£2·8m has been awarded to a consortium of institutes led by Heriot-Watt University with Keele and other universities as partners to host a new Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) and the consortium has already committed a further £5·2m of their own funds
NERC has also invested £40k in ReFINE an independent research collaboration between Durham, Keele, and Newcastle-upon-Tyne, focussing on shale gas and oil exploitation using fracking and its potential risks. NERC brings an independent perspective to the consortium, which includes funding from the oil and gas sector.
Keele School of Physical and Geographical Sciences and EPSAM are partners in the CDT led by Dr Stuart Clarke, Head of the Basin Dynamics Research Group (BDRG), and are a major part of the ReFINE Project (Researching Fracking in Europe) with two major projects led by Professor Peter Styles on the processes of Hydraulic Stimulation for Shale Gas recovery.
The centre will focus on creating a highly skilled workforce with expertise applicable across the energy and environment sectors to equip industry with skills needed to reduce the environmental impact of oil and gas extraction.
This will be the first in a suite of NERC CDTs, training students embedded alongside world-class researchers and industry partners with placements, mentoring, facilities and equipment to close high-level skills gaps and priority needs. The first intake of Keele BDRG PhD students will arrive in October 2014.
Universities & Science Minister David Willetts said, "Working alongside leading businesses in the oil and gas sector to improve our skills base is vital to the success of the government's industrial strategy."