International collaborative research to develop carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects was furthered today with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the UK and Australia.

Representatives of the UK Carbon Capture and Storage Research Centre (UKCCSRC) and the Cooperative Research Centre for Greenhouse Gas Technologies (CO2CRC) signed the agreement uniting both countries.

Welcoming the signing of the MoU, which cements an already cooperative relationship between the two organisations, Prof. Jon Gibbins, UKCCSRC Director said, “UK researchers have enjoyed meeting and working with Australian colleagues over many years and it will be excellent to use this MoU to deepen and broaden these interactions.”

CO2CRC Chief Executive, Dr. Richard Aldous said, “We’re delighted that Australian researchers will have an opportunity to collaborate with UK counterparts, who have diverse CCS research capability.”

This agreement formalizes an already strong relationship between the two organisations and researchers in both countries. Last month, UKCCSRC announced £2.5m funding for CCS research including the project Quantifying Residual and Dissolution Trapping at the CO2CRC Otway Project Injection Site, which excitingly involves collaboration with CO2CRC and provides UK researchers the opportunity to conduct research at the unique Otway subsurface research site.   

In addition, last year, UKCCSRC funded an Early Career Researcher (ECR) exchange programme which saw students being funded to undertake research at Australian institutions.

The UK is leading on CCS deployment in Europe, with two FEED studies under way, Electricity Market Reform arrangements that provide a level playing field for all forms of low-carbon electricity generation, including CCS, going forward and excellent offshore CO2 storage potential. This MoU brings together two of the world’s leading CCS research organisations whose breadth and expertise combined is a huge boost to international collaboration on CCS research.

The signing of the MoU today, by Tim Dixon, UKCCSRC Board Member and Prof. John Kaldi, CO2CRC’s Chief Scientist at the IEAGHG Summer School at the University of Texas in Austin, marks a commitment by the UK and Australia to work together to explore and advance CCS technologies, which prevent carbon dioxide produced through energy generation and heavy industrial processes from reaching the atmosphere and are vital to the global effort to tackle climate change.