International Seminar on Ocean DevelopmentPresentations on joint research and development with DeepStar and Scottish Enterprise

The Nippon Foundation held an international seminar on ocean development on November 9 in a hybrid face-to-face and online format at The Nippon Zaidan Building in Tokyo. More than 210 participants attended the seminar either in person or online, and in addition to presentations by the presenters, the seminar concluded with a lively Q&A session and exchange of opinions with the audience.

Photo of Shakir Shamshy and Pat Toomey of DeepStar answering questions from the audience
Shakir Shamshy (left) and Pat Toomey (right) of DeepStar answer questions from the audience


In 2020, then Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga declared that Japan would achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Many other countries around the world are taking similar actions to achieve the goal of “limiting global warming to below 1.5 degrees Celsius compared with pre-industrial levels,” as set out in the Paris Agreement adopted in 2015. In the field of ocean development, issues to be addressed include global warming countermeasures, the use of renewable energy, and the transition to decarbonized fuels. The Nippon Foundation is working to address these issues through joint research and development programs being carried out with DeepStar*1 and Scottish Enterprise,*2 and the seminar included reports on the current status and results to date of these joint projects.

  1. DeepStar(external site): A consortium for offshore technology development consisting of companies responsible for exploration, development, and production of offshore oil and natural gas around the world, including global upstream companies Chevron, Shell, and Equinor, as well as companies, universities, and research institutes that provide products and services to these upstream companies.
  2. Scottish Enterprise: Scotland’s national economic development agency and a non-departmental public body of the Scottish Government. To deliver a significant, lasting effect on the Scottish economy, they work with partners in the public and private sectors to find and exploit the best opportunities.

In December 2021, The Nippon Foundation signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with DeepStar and started a new joint R&D program to promote decarbonization in offshore oil and gas technology development. Currently, 12 projects are ongoing under this new program. An MoU was also signed with Scottish Enterprise in 2017, and a new scheme was launched in 2019 to promote joint R&D for a “blue economy,” a concept aimed at realizing economic growth through sustainable use of the ocean. As of November 2022, nine projects have been completed under this R&D program with Scottish Enterprise.

Photo of Mitsuyuki Unno speaking at the seminar
The Nippon Foundation Executive Director Mitsuyuki Unno speaking at the seminar

The seminar began with opening remarks by The Nippon Foundation Executive Director Mitsuyuki Unno, who described the role that joint R&D plays in fostering maritime human resources and his expectations for Japanese companies. Next, Shakir Shamshy, DeepStar’s director, gave a presentation on the latest developments in DeepStar’s technology development, and Pat Toomey, DeepStar’s manager in charge of Chevron’s technology, gave a presentation on carbon capture and underground storage. This was followed by reports from Japanese companies on the current status of their joint R&D with DeepStar.
For the second part of the seminar, Dr. Stephen Baker of Scottish Development International gave a presentation on offshore wind power generation in Scotland, and this was followed by presentations by Japanese companies on the results of their joint R&D with Scottish Enterprise.

Photo of Stephen Baker speaking at the seminar
Stephen Baker of Scottish Development International

Finally, Naoto Nakagawa, Director of The Nippon Foundation’s Office of Ocean Development, announced the schedule for future applications for joint R&D with DeepStar.

Photo of Naoto Nakagawa speaking at the seminar
Naoto Nakagawa, Director of The Nippon Foundation’s Office of Ocean Development


Public Relations Team
The Nippon Foundation

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