Gustavo Assi, of the RCGI’s Communications & Dissemination of Knowledge area, presented such projects as carbon storage in salt caves, the separation of CO2 and CH4 via membranes, and the capture and usage of CO2 to generate bioenergy

Gustavo Assi with the MCTIC’s Brandão (photo, left) and with the staff of the Department of Energy Planning and Development of the MME (photo, right)Gustavo Assi with the MCTIC’s Brandão (photo, left) and with the staff of the Department of Energy Planning and Development of the MME (photo, right)

On last May 15, Professor Gustavo Assi, Director for Communications & the Dissemination of Knowledge of the FAPESP Shell Research Centre for Gas Innovation (RCGI), was received in Brasilia at the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovation, and Telecommunications (MCTI) and at the Ministry of Mining and Engineering (MME) to present the primary results of the RCGI’s projects and the plans for the Centre’s future activities.

At the MCTI, Assi was welcomed by Secretary Maurício Pazini Brandão, of the Department of Applied Technologies. At the MME, the Professor went to the Department of Energy Planning and Development, where he was received by Director João José de Nora Souto, of the Department of Exploration Policies and Production of Petroleum and Natural Gas.

“During the two meetings, the representatives of the Ministries became acquainted with the progress of the research projects under development at the RCGI and gave their support to the activities,” Assi reported.

Among other subjects, he presented the concept of salt caves for storing CO2 below the ocean floor, and explained how this technology represents a new phase for Brazil’s exploration of the pre-salt region. “I also spoke about projects for reducing leaking gas emissions; the separation of CO2 and CH4 by structured membranes and other techniques; and the capture and usage of CO2 for generating bioenergy, which would make it possible for Brazil to have a negative footprint of CO2 emissions in the ethanol production cycle,” Assi stated.

According to Brandão, of the MCTI, the technologies under development at the RCGI must be seen as in the national interest. “The projects should be shared with other Ministries that can propagate their impact throughout the country.”

Souto stressed that the MME needs to relate more closely to the initiatives of the RGCI, “in recognition of its role in the development of Brazil’s energy sector.”

The staffs of the two Ministries were invited by Assi to take part in Sustainable Gas Research Innovation 2019 (SGRI), in early October, in São Paulo. SGRI is an international conference that has been held every year since 2016, and brings researchers together from the RCGI and the Sustainable Gas institute (SGI), connected with the Imperial College London, for the exchange of knowledge in this area.

During the visits, Professor Gustavo Assi also emphasized that the management model of the RCGI – shared with Shell, FAPESP, and USP – is able to provide benefits and advances for the development of the country’s scientific and technological research.