28 June 2017

Prof Michael J Kelly - Future Energy Needs and Engineering Reality

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  • Fossil fuels have provided over 90% of the energy consumed on earth since 1800.
  • In support of the current global push towards decarbonisation, the UK has committed to reducing greenhouse emissions by at least 80% of 1990 levels before 2050.
  • Is it possible to achieve this target? And, if so, how? Are there lessons about the development and introduction of new technologies to be learnt from our past?

A study by the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2010 analysed the options for attaining the 2050 emissions target and concluded: 
‘Turning the theoretical emissions reduction targets into reality will require more than political will: it will require nothing short of the biggest peacetime programme of change ever seen in the UK.’

Professor Michael Kelly has previously argued against over-interpretation of the data on climate change and warned about the danger of unintended consequences caused by premature deployment of technologies to combat emissions. On Wednesday 28 June 2017, at SCI’s Public Evening Lecture, he will examine growing global energy needs alongside efforts to reduce emissions and consider how the UK could plan for a sustainable future by looking at lessons from recent technological interventions.


Day 1 - 28 June 2017

Lecture schedule
Lecture begins

Venue and Contact


14/15 Belgrave Square 

Please click here for a location map.

Conference Team

Tel: +44 (0)20 7598 1561

Email: conferences@soci.org

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Additional Info

Past Evening Lecture information and Videos

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About the Speaker

Professor Michael Kelly has been the Prince Philip Professor of Technology in the University of Cambridge since 2002 and is a Professorial Fellow at Trinity Hall. He was Chief Scientific Advisor to the Department for Communities and Local Government. He was the Executive Director of the Cambridge-MIT Institute, bringing together academics from both institutions to work on research, education, and industrial outreach for the benefit of the UK economy. He has written and spoken on many occasions about the UK’s approach to climate change from an engineering point of view, and was a member of an independent scientific assessment panel to investigate the Climatic Research Unit email controversy in 2010. 
He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of London, the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of New Zealand, the Institute of Physics, the Institution of Engineering and Technology, and Senior Member of the Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineering in the USA. He has won prizes for his work from the Institute of Physics, the Royal Academy of Engineering, and the Royal Society.

This event will be recorded and posted on the SCI website. Please note: some members of the audience may be in view during the question and answer session at the end of the lecture