Circular economy for energy infrastructure: from reducing impacts to delivering net-benefits
Circular economy has gained momentum in industry, government and society based on its ability to deliver substantial social, environmental and economic benefits. Despite the benefits, circular economy is not systematically and proactively applied to the design, operation and end-of-use management of energy infrastructure. This presentation will introduce circular economy and the strategies through which it can be implemented in various energy sectors. Approaches vary based on regional differences and the role of sectors in the energy transition. Collaboration across society and knowledge exchange across sectors are crucial to maximise the potential of a sustainable circular economy.
Anne is a Senior Research Fellow in Circular Economy at the University of Leeds in the UK and visiting researcher at Cranfield University. She is a circular economy expert working on the interface of research and practice, and is actively involved in implementing a sustainable circular economy throughout the UK. She is Technical Programme Manager of the Transforming Foundation Industries Research and Innovation Hub, and also heads the Wind Energy Lifecycle Sustainability group and the Yorkshire Circular Lab. She hold various advisory positions for government, research councils and industry.
Anne has investigated circular economy for energy infrastructure since 2017. She collaborated with Zero Waste Scotland in a project to explore the social, environmental, economic and technical values of decommissioning oil and gas infrastructure with the use of circular economy approaches. She also delivered a collaborative project with the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult and Department for International Trade to embed circular economy in the design, operation and end-of-use management of offshore wind infrastructure.
Anne is also part of various international collaborations such as steering group member of the IEA Wind task 45 on wind turbine blade recycling, and close collaborations with the Moonshot project led by ECHT and the CISTE project led by the University of Mondragon.
Circular Economy in the Wind Sector Joint Industry Project
This presentation will introduce the Circular Economy in the Wind Sector Joint Industry Project (CEWS JIP), talk through its initial planned work packages and what it has planned for the future. The CEWS JIP aims to help both the on and offshore wind industry in their goals to reduce waste and improve the circularity of the sector. Together with industry, academia, and key stakeholders, it will tackle the issues of recycling/reusing all turbine components (including blades), repowering strategies, and attempt to understand the true financial and environmental cost of decommissioning offshore wind farms.
ORE Catapult is the UK’s flagship technology innovation and research centre for offshore wind wave and tidal energy. ORE Catapult is playing a leading role in the delivery of the offshore wind sector deal (partnership between UK Government and offshore wind industry), including the Offshore Wind Growth Partnership, focused on enhancing the competitiveness of UK supply chain companies for supplying into the domestic and export markets. ORE Catapult has also developed and maintains technology roadmaps in order to co-ordinate R&D funding and activity across agreed industry priorities. This provides ORE Catapult with a unique broad and objective perspective on the UK and global offshore wind industry.
Sean Haughey is part of the Operational Performance directorate which focuses on the needs and challenges of owner operators, developers, OEMs, and the supply chain that support them. He was worked together with industry, academia, and key stakeholders to develop a Joint Industry Project (JIP) to help tackle the complex, multi-faceted issue of circularity in the wind sector. Sean has experience of bringing together industry to tackle difficult challenges and promoting cross-sector collaboration.
Title To Be Confirmed
Speaker to be confirmed
How can modularisation enable circular economy in energy infrastructure?
Energy infrastructure have often a technical and/or economic lifecycle predetermined by the lifetime of certain components. The residual lifetime of civil structure or other components with a longer life is often wasted. Modular energy infrastructure can be reconfigurable decoupling the life of the infrastructure from their modules, and extending module and/or infrastructure lifecycle. Modularisation could become a cornerstone to enable circular economy (CE) initiatives, optimising the decommissioning of energy infrastructure.
This presentation will describe the link between modularisation and CE (i.e. Modular CE), and will present the main enabling factors and barriers for the implementation of Modular CE.
Dr Benito Mignacca is a Research Fellow at the University of Leeds (UK). He graduated from the University of Cassino (Italy), where he obtained his BEng in Industrial Engineering in 2013 and his MSc in Management Engineering in 2016 with the highest classification in the Italian ranking (i.e. 110/110 cum laude). He obtained his PhD in the School of Civil Engineering at the University of Leeds in 2021, where he received the “School of Civil Engineering Postgraduate Research Award” in recognition of his academic performance. During his PhD, he investigated the link between modularisation and circular economy in energy infrastructure, and he co-authored 10 peer-reviewed publications. His research interests include:
- Energy transition to Net Zero – Focus on economics, finance, low carbon infrastructure (nuclear and energy storage in particular), circular economy, and energy policies
- Project management in large infrastructure – Focus on project and programme delivery model, modularity and modularisation in complex systems, innovation, social sustainability, and cognitive bias
He is Sustainability Ambassador for the University of Leeds at the Major Project Assocation, and he is part of the Coordinated Research Project “Economic appraisal of Small Modular Reactor projects: Methodologies and applications, organised by the IAEA.
His research in a click: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Benito-Mignacca-2