David Cameron MP, the leader of the Conservatives, visited the engineering laboratories of the University of Southampton’s Sustainable Energy Research Group on Monday 3rd May 2010. He heard how the range of disciplines at the University’s School of Civil Engineering and the Environment enabled Southampton to conduct energy research from many different perspectives, from monitoring climate change in the built environment through to producing renewable energy solutions.
Professor AbuBakr Bahaj, head of the Sustainable Energy Research Group, explained the various areas of renewable energy research undertaken by his team and focused particularly on the potential of marine energy (tidal and wave), solar photovoltaics, and energy efficiency in buildings. ‘With the right investment, marine energy could contribute around 10 percent of the UK’s electricity requirements,’ commented Prof Bahaj.
Mr Cameron viewed various research and development projects being conducted by the group in the marine energy field, met the Vice Chancellor Prof Don Nutbeam and various student groups in the photovoltaic atrium of the George Thomas Building which was designed with support from the group.