University of Houston’s Center for Carbon Management in Energy Introduces Webinar Series

By Janet Miranda

The University of Houston’s Center for Carbon Management in Energy (CCME) announced its webinar series, which began April 2, to address key topical areas and issues facing the energy industry during this unprecedented time.

The six-part series ended in early May and was designed to continue communication and interaction with the energy industry. Topics ranged from legal and business policy to transformative technologies, along with the impact the coronavirus has had on the energy industry.

Charles McConnell, executive director for Carbon Management and Energy Sustainability at UH, says the importance of carbon management cannot be understated, even during moments of crisis.

“The momentum in carbon management has not diminished and in fact may be keener than ever,” said McConnell. “What is clear is that investments and funds will be ever more intensely scrutinized for value, both quantitative and qualitative.”

McConnell said true sustainability will requires energy to be produced and consumed in an environmentally responsible manner, without sacrificing reliability and affordability The CCME has identified carbon management as a key to the energy transition and sustainability for the future.

The series explored issues faced by the field, including strategies geopolitics, project development and legal frameworks among other challenges and opportunities in the energy marketplace.

The webinars included leading subject-matter experts from the university and the marketplace, including Greg Bean, executive director of the Gutierrez Energy Management Institute at UH; Tracy Hester, CCME co-director and lecturer at the UH Law Center; David Lowman, partner at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP; and John Hofmeister, founder and CEO for Citizens Affordable Energy & past president of Shell Oil Company.

“The responses and feedback from the webinars were very strong and encouraging for our CCME,” said McConnell. “It broadened our reach to many that were able to join by the webinar platform.”

According to McConnell, the recent global pandemic will impact short and long-term carbon management strategies, which only strengthens the link between the marketplace and academic institutions like the CCME.

“Statements and roadmaps for achieving challenging future carbon goals will be difficult for companies and organizations to achieve without a strong alignment with the public-private partnership of industry and academia," said McConnell.