Understanding Public Responses to Industrial Decarbonisation in Insecure Times

Globalisation has brought new uncertainties and insecurities that threaten citizens’ resilience, characterised by social scientists as ‘World Risk Society’. This is the social context – the ‘new normal of risk’ – within which industrial decarbonisation will have to be delivered, a situation magnified because most of the Industrial Clusters are in regions of the UK with pockets of severe social deprivation alongside the existing industry. Currently, there is no research on the social implications of regional industrial system decarbonisation framed in terms of these wider currents of risk society. The project will explore how such global uncertainties produce resistances to (or embrace of) key industrial decarbonisation pathways, as grounded in the affective intensities arising from people’s aspirations to live secure and sustainable lives alongside industrial change. The project will investigate how these resistances to change impact the trade-offs to be made between industrial decarbonisation, the construction of resilient local communities, and building a secure UK industrial-base.

Principal Investigators: Prof Nick Pidgeon (PI) and Prof Karen Henwood (Co-I), Cardiff University

Project CollaboratorsSWIC, Costain, Tata Steele, WWU, WPD, National Grid, Industry Wales, NRW, WG, BEIS, UK Climate Committee, UKERC, Neath Port Talbot Council, Bridgend Council, Cardiff City Council, Port of Milford Haven (Commercial Division), UKRI GGR-ERW Hub and Demonstrator Programme

Tags: Carbon capture; Carbon emissions; Carbon storage; Carbon transport; Carbon utilisation; CCS; CCUS; CO2; Emissions reduction; Costs and risks; Energy transition; Transport networks; Green technologies; Hydrogen; Hydrogen storage; Hydrogen transport; Industrial heat; Industry decarbonisation; Innovation; Policy; Renewable energy; Technoeconomic Assessment (TEA); South Wales Cluster; Black Country Cluster; Northwest Cluster; Solent Cluster; Wales; Energy; Steel; Cement; Chemicals; Iron; Paper & Pulp; Refining; Glass; Community acceptance