Societal and cultural research opportunities at a deep UK geological carbon dioxide storage research facility : results from a social science ‘sandpit’ discussion

Napier, H.; Dickie, J.; Akhurst, M.; Badcock, N.; Chang, T.; Dunnet, E.; Robinson, T.; Vincent, C.; Akinola, K.; Dale, T.. 2022 Societal and cultural research opportunities at a deep UK geological carbon dioxide storage research facility : results from a social science ‘sandpit’ discussion. Nottingham, UK, British Geological Survey, 21pp. (OR/22/004) (Unpublished)

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This report describes the outcomes of a sandpit activity in December 2021, and initial follow up discussions, designed to bring together academics from across and beyond the UK, as well as members of public sector organisations. The intended outcomes were to discuss and develop societal and cultural research opportunities as part of a scoping study for a UK CO2 storage research facility. These outcomes are a research community view that inform the questions and knowledge gaps that a research facility would address. The sandpit is the first of many activities that will enable us to build an evidence base to demonstrate how a research facility would benefit from societal and cultural research and unlock new research themes. In particular, how the identified research themes support the UK’s transition to a sustainable future. The following themes were identified: • the role of culture and heritage in shaping community views and energy literacy; • placed-based and participatory research and the links between people’s sense of place and new energy infrastructure activities; • the value of tacit knowledge and collective memory to support co-design and community agency; • energy justice in support of a just and inclusive energy transition; • good governance to support ethical and responsible innovation; • benefits and risks, inclusive knowledge production and community involvement in decision making; • social conflict, controversies and trust in ‘energy actors’; • existing CO2 storage narratives and how these might be changed; • use of creative arts-based approaches to deepen community engagement; • the CO2 storage research facility as a ‘public lab’ to support a range of engagement approaches. Recommendations are made in this report concerning the development a new programme of integrated, interdisciplinary and inclusive research, based on priority research themes, in a timely fashion to ensure maximum benefit and impact. We also recommend that a cross-research council funding strategy is developed in support of this research. We suggest that developing such an integrated programme would: enable community agency in the development and co-design of a CO2 storage research facility; encourage dialogue and investment in wider carbon mitigation strategies and support localised behaviour change; embed an understanding of the role CO2 storage could play in the energy transition; and enable positive, transparent and inclusive energy and climate policy development both locally and nationally.

Item Type: Publication - Report
Funders/Sponsors: British Geological Survey
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: This item has been internally reviewed, but not externally peer-reviewed.
Date made live: 07 Mar 2024 12:45 +0 (UTC)

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