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Texas A&M at Qatar represented at Clean Energy Education and Empowerment (C3E) Symposium

Published Oct 01, 2023

During the Clean Energy Education & Empowerment (C3E) Initiative symposium held at MIT recently, Manar Oqbi, a Ph.D. fellow from Texas A&M University at Qatar won the C3E poster award and graduate studies manager Dr. Valentini Pappa participated as a C3E Ambassador.

The U.S. Department of Energy, MIT Energy Initiative, Stanford University’s Precourt Institute for Energy and the Texas A&M Energy Institute collaborated to implement the Clean Energy Education and Empowerment (C3E) Initiative. Closing the gender gap and increasing the participation, leadership and success of women in clean-energy fields are the goals of the C3E Initiative.

Oqbi, who is pursuing her Ph.D. under the supervision of Dr. Dhabia Al-Mohannadi and Dr. Mahmoud El-Halwagi, was recognized for her poster, “A Holistic Approach for Resilient and Sustainable Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage Supply Chains (CCUS).”

The Texas A&M at Qatar Ph.D. Fellows Program is for high-achieving students interested in earning a Ph.D. and focusing their research on areas of importance to Qatar who plan to work in Qatar after completion of their doctoral degree.

“Among 30 talented poster presenters, my work on carbon capture utilization and storage supply chains stood out, and I am honored to be one of the five awardees recognized for our contributions,” Oqbi said. “This award is a testament to the importance of sustainable solutions in the industrial sector.”

Her poster was about carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS), which is a critical technology that not only addresses climate change but is also underpinned by robust safety measures.

“Safety is paramount in the CCUS process, ensuring that carbon dioxide is captured and stored securely,” Oqbi said. “This focus on safety minimizes environmental risks, ensuring the protection of both our planet and local communities. By highlighting these stringent safety standards, CCUS technology is not only an effective climate solution but also a responsible one. This commitment to safety demonstrates the industry's dedication to environmental, social, and governance standards, providing reassurance to stakeholders and investors. Safety is not just a priority; it's a cornerstone of CCUS technology, making it an attractive and sustainable choice for addressing climate challenges. I look forward to continuing my research journey in this critical field.”

This year symposium — “Clearing Hurdles to Achieve Net Zero by 2050: Moving Quickly, Eliminating Risks and Leaving No One Behind” — explored how we can achieve a rapid transition to an affordable and sustainable net-zero world, and the importance of strategically increasing momentum and addressing challenges. Attendees discussed how to preserve and strengthen policies to enable clean energy, address energy system inequities, speed up the technology journey from lab to market, and overcome present and future supply chain vulnerabilities to achieve net zero by 2050.

Pappa said, “I am thrilled to represent Texas A&M University at Qatar at this wonderfully organized symposium to discuss such important topics. I am so inspired by the Lifetime Achievement Awardee, Gina Mccarthy, I am also happy to see our student, Manar Oqbi, as one of the five awardees despite the very tough competition. It really showcases the caliber of our Ph.D. Fellows."

During the discussions, Pappa and other participants explored strategies for creating robust and enduring policies that drive the transition to cleaner energy sources, shed light on the inequities in access to clean energy resources and address the historical injustices that have disproportionately impacted vulnerable communities, and recognized the importance of advancing technological innovation while simultaneously addressing scalability challenges.