Victorian Energy and Resources Minister Michael O’Brien has launched a major new research centre that cements Victoria’s reputation as an innovator in carbon capture and storage (CCS).
The Peter Cook Centre for CCS Research will be a world class facility located at the University of Melbourne and will initially host 30 scientists and engineers working on CCS. The Coalition Government is contributing $500,000 towards the creation of the Centre.
The new centre has received a $6 million sponsorship from Rio Tinto to create a research platform that will be integrated with the Co-operative Research Centre for Greenhouse Gas Technologies (CO2CRC), operator of the successful Otway Project.
A significant proportion of the funding will go towards the continuation of the Otway Project as an international research facility covering subsurface and monitoring and verification work.
“The launch of the Peter Cook Centre for CCS Research is an exciting new chapter in Victoria’s emergence as a leader in CCS and will help attract investment and the best and brightest scientists and engineers,” Mr O’Brien said.
“Victoria has a well-earned reputation in research into technologies like CCS, which will be crucial as we make the transition to a carbon constrained future.
“CCS has the potential to deliver significant benefits to Victoria, which is uniquely placed with large stable storage reservoirs in the Gippsland Basin.
“The research carried out at this new centre will add to our understanding of this potential new industry; an industry which could deliver jobs, boost skills and attract investment, while strengthening Victoria’s energy security in a low emissions future.
“I congratulate Rio Tinto on its investment in this important initiative and in the development of the next generation of CCS experts in science and engineering,” Mr O’Brien said.
The research outcomes from the University of Melbourne and the Otway Project facilities will support Victoria’s CCS centrepiece, the CarbonNet Project, and further the development of the CCS industry. CO2CRC is the lead research organisation for the CarbonNet Project.
The Peter Cook Centre for CCS Research, named after the geologist who founded CO2CRC, will be based at the University of Melbourne and will provide postgraduate education and applied research in CCS.
The Coalition Government has demonstrated its commitment to this important initiative by its sponsorship of the geological carbon storage component of the Centre.