CCS Social Science Starter Pack

There was a trend doing the rounds on Twitter a couple of weeks back for ‘starter packs’. If you didn’t see it, the idea was fairly self-explanatory – post up four pictures of essential items for different situations. Topics covered included being a Manchester United fan, going to university, living in Glasgow, that sort of thing. It was, of course, intended to be humorous in nature.

I had had a mind to post up my own ‘starter pack’ of key readings for one of my research fields, however I first missed the boat with the trend and then realised an academic ‘starter pack’ is in essence just a truncated reading list. Nothing particularly new there. Nonetheless, having done the mental work to think of 4-5 really key readings on the social dimensions of carbon dioxide capture and storage, it would seem wasteful were I not to post it up somewhere.

The following list is, therefore, a series of readings that I think are important for really starting to examine the social dimensions of CCS. There is a lot of very rigorously-researched and well-written CCS social science out there, and it would be impossible to list it all even though I want to. So the reason I’ve gone for these particular articles is that they helped me think in perhaps unexpected ways about the human dimensions of CCS, and make links to bigger debates on energy, climate change and governance in ways I hadn’t thought of:

Philip Boucher and Clair Gough (2012) ‘Mapping the Ethical Landscape of Carbon Capture and Storage’ Poiesis & Praxis 9(3-4): 249-270.

Heleen de Coninck (2010) ‘Advocacy for carbon capture and storage could arouse distrust’ Nature 463: 293.

Minh Ha-Duong and Rodica Loisel (2011) ‘Actuarial risk assessment of expected fatalities attributable to carbon capture and storage in 2050’ International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 5:1346-1358.

Duncan McLaren (2012) ‘Procedural justice in carbon capture and storage’ Energy and Environment 23 (2-3): 345-366.

Jennie Stephens (2014) ‘Time to Stop CCS Investments and End Government Subsidies of Fossil Fuels’ Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change 5: 169-173.

(if you would like a fuller view of the different material on CCS and society that’s out there, you might want to look at the review I contributed to along with colleagues at CSIRO last year).

As to where my own work fits into this, if we are to continue the Twitter trend metaphor then I fear I may be on the road to being to CCS what the Wealdstone Raider is to non-league football.


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