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Special MEE and SBE Seminar: Dr. Hon Chung Lau

November 9, 2022 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Hill Auditorium in Barrows Hall, UMaine

Dr. Hon Chung Lau, Low Carbon Energies LLC & Rice University:

“The Role of CCS and Hydrogen in the Energy Transition”

Contrary to popular belief, the ongoing energy transition from a high to low carbon economy requires more than harnessing renewable energies. Currently, only 11% of global energy consumption comes from renewable energy while 85% comes from fossil fuels. The current pace of installing renewable power plants is inadequate for nations to achieve net-zero by the second half of the century. What each country needs to do is decarbonizing all three major energy consumptions sectors: power, transport and industry. There are essentially five ways to achieve this. They are renewable energy, carbon capture and storage (CCS), hydrogen, reducing energy demand by adoption of a circular economy, and nuclear energy. How each country will utilize these ways to go through the energy transition will depend on its specific energy mix and the need to balance energy security, affordability, and sustainability. This seminar will show how CCS and hydrogen production are key to achieving net-zero in all three energy consumption sectors. Furthermore, there is enough storage capacity in the oil and gas reservoirs, and saline aquifers in the world to store two centuries of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emission. We will present several case studies of large-scale CCS demonstration projects in Europe and Asia and discuss what is needed to take CCS to the next level of implementation.

Professor Lau worked for Shell’s upstream business for 35 years where he had held positions in R&D, field development planning, technical assurance, training, project management and technical leadership. From 2016-2021, he was a professor of practice at the National University of Singapore (NUS) and senior scientific advisor at Singapore’s Agency of Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). At NUS, he taught and conducted research on unconventional and renewable energy resources. In 2021, Professor Lau founded Low Carbon Energies LLC, a consulting firm focusing on the energy transition. He holds BSc and PhD in chemical engineering from Caltech and Princeton, respectively, and is a registered professional engineer in Texas. He is also an adjunct professor at the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department at Rice University.


November 9, 2022
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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