Meeting Details
Energy and Agriculture: Problem or Solution?
Thursday 22nd Apr 2010

The theme for this next event is that we will try to engage with the multiplicity of interactions between agriculture and energy, both as a larger user of energy (and perhaps carbon emitter) and as a potentially v large supply of energy sources (biomass, energy-saving alternative materials, wastes, energy crops, sites for renewables etc etc).

We feel this theme is not yet fully explored in the UK, yet wholly relevant to the east of England in particular with a large agri-hinterland and real energy issues.

Cambridge has a rare combination of academic excellence, entrepreneurship and technical development and has an important role to play in defining and undertaking this change.

Our speakers include:

  • Richard Stark, Head of Commercial Development at British Sugar - no presentation available.
  • Mark Coleman from InCrops - download his presentation.
  • Bruce Tofield, Innovation and Change, Cred School of Environment and Science, University of East Anglia - download his presentation.
Bruce Tofield will be talking on Biochar: how agricultural methods can produce near-permanent carbon sequestration in the soil. This is one of the few techniques that actively decreases the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere.

Programme: Energy and Agriculture; Problem of Solution? Law faculty: image from Cambridge2000 online architectural library

16:45 Doors open
17:00 Refreshments, coffee and tea
17:15 Introduction to the evening
17:20 John French / Beatrix Schlarb-Ridley from InCrops
17:50 Bruce Tofield
18:20 Richard Stark
18:50 Buffet meal in the atrium, with wine
19:20 Open moderated discussion, and continuing buffet
21:00 event close

Bruce Tofield has been studying biochar at UEA. How much carbon sequestration might be achieved? Globally, “Biochar has the potential to sequester almost 400 billion tonnes of carbon by 2100 and to lower atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations by 37 parts per million.” How does that compare to other approaches, like Carbon Capture and Storage? Biochar production removes CO2 from the air, while CCS aims to remove it from the exhaust gases of power plants – in large quantities. According to Bruce Tofield “In the UK biochar might yield a few million tonnes CO2 saving with current biomass sources – CCS needs to aim for over 100 m tonnes.”

The InCrops enterprise hub has been created to:

  • stimulate through new business assistance and activity the commercialisation of biorenewable and low carbon products from alternative and non food crop feedstocks,
  • stimulate new business activity from the East of England's world class research capability in plant and crop science,
  • stimulate sustainable economic growth through supply chain development, market integration and product innovation,
  • accelerate the rate of successful technology transfer into the business and commercial environment,
  • widen the scope for technology transfer through new exploitation platforms,
  • proactively support commercialisation through business spin outs and business incubation.

Content is coming here as you probably can see. Content is comming here as you probably can see.


Reddie & Grose
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