EPSRC - Energy Research Senior Fellow

Lead Research Organisation: Imperial College London
Department Name: Earth Science and Engineering


Against the backdrop of increasing energy demands, the threat of climate change and the UK's dwindling fuel reserves, the challenge is to find reliable, diverse, sustainable, affordable, publicly acceptable and safe ways to supply and use energy. This is a priority highlighted in the Government's 10 year Science and Innovation Investment Framework and in the recent settlement for the 2004 Spending Review. The Research Councils' total funding available for energy research is expected to expand over the 2005-06 to 2007-08 period from its present level of around 40 million a year to more than 70 million a year. Further growth is anticipated beyond the current spending review period.Since April 2005, EPSRC has had the lead for energy research on behalf of all the Research Councils. Much of this increased expenditure is expected to be in the engineering and technology research areas supported by EPSRC but it will also extend to a wider range of energy research issues including socio-economic, environmental and biological.The 2003 Energy White Paper Our energy future creating a low carbon economy set out the Government's policy on energy with four new goals:To put the UK on a path to cut its carbon emission's by some 20% by 2050 with real progress by 2020;To maintain the reliability of energy supplies;To promote competitive markets in the UK and beyond, helping to raise the rate of sustainable economic growth and to improve productivity; andTo ensure that every home is adequately and affordably heated.The White Paper also included the target that, by 2010, 10% of electricity should come from renewable sources. Mitigation of climate change has been identified by the Government as one of the most pressing challenges that the UK faces today.In addressing this policy, the Research Councils, led by EPSRC, have identified an overall energy programme with 4 objectives:To support a full spectrum of energy research to help the UK meet the objectives and targets set out in the 2003 Energy White PaperTo work in partnership with others to contribute to the research and postgraduate training needs of energy-related business and other key stakeholdersTo increase the international visibility and level of international collaboration within the UK energy research portfolioTo expand the UK university research capacity in energy related areas.The co-ordinated energy programme will have strategic leadership and dedicated programme management within EPSRC to ensure that there is coherence between existing and new energy investments and engagement with other stakeholders and actual and potential funding partners.EPSRC will take a clear lead in driving forward this sustainable energy agenda, engaging with others to cover the full range of energy research issues and delivering a clear vision for energy research over the next 10 years. This will see the UK successfully developing, embracing and exploiting sustainable and energy efficient technologies and systems to enable it to meet energy and environmental targets by 2020. Additional funds from the 2004 Spending Review will provide for the substantial expansion of support for the research and training necessary to underpin all future energy options including renewables, improved and cleaner use of fossil fuels, keeping the nuclear option open and addressing fusion for the longer term. A key aspect will be the engineering and scientific aspects of the technologies that will reduce or remove reliance on fossil fuels. A key part of this activity is the proposal to appoint an energy senior research fellow to champion the area and be a high level ambassador for UK energy research, to gather intelligence on international research developments and opportunities and to achieve national and international visibility and co-ordination for the Energy research programme. The Fellow will report to the EPSRC's Director Research and Innovation, Professor Randal Richards and while not exercising direct executive


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Description This grant supported my role as energy senior fellow to the RC energy programme. My role was to support the RCUK energy team, with an emphasis on international engagement. It supported the development of new joint programmes between the UK and China in particular.
Sector Energy
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Economic