Dr Jen Roberts

Knowledge Exchange Associate

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Personal statement

Jen is a researcher working in the growing interdisciplinary field of social and environmental risk of energy systems.

As a geologist, Jen uses her technical background to address research questions on the perception, assessment and communication of risk from low-carbon energy technologies. Her recent work spans from minimising the risk of leakage of engineered CO2 storage and advising appropriate monitoring strategies at these sites, the role of technical expertise on the perceived risks from new energy technologies, methods of deliberative engagement for informing decision making on energy developments, and on assessing (and minimising) the environmental impact of potential exploitation of unconventional gas in the UK.

This research informs how the necessary transition to a low-carbon energy system can be implemented in a way that is acceptable to society.

From June 2013 - Dec 2016 Jen was funded by ClimateXChange - Scotland’s Centre of Expertise on Climate Change. The centre brings together a range of researchers to provide independent advice, research and analysis on climate change and climate change policy in Scotland. She is now a faculty-funded Knowledge Exchange Research Associate. 

In addition to research, Jen assists with student supervision, and teaching on several undergraduate and masters programmes.


Structural controls on the location and distribution of CO2 emission at a natural CO2 spring in Daylesford, Australia
Roberts Jennifer J, Leplastrier Aero, Feitz Andrew J, Shipton Zoe K, Bell Andrew F, Karolyte Rūta
International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control Vol 84, pp. 36-46 (2019)
Geospatial statistics elucidate competing geological controls on natural CO2 seeps in Italy
Roberts Jennifer J, Bell Andrew F, Wood Rachel A, Haszeldine R Stuart
Geofluids (2019)
An experimental investigation into quantifying CO2 leakage in aqueous environments using chemical tracers
Myers Matthew B, Roberts Jennifer J, White Cameron, Stalker Linda
Chemical Geology Vol 511, pp. 91-99 (2019)
Fault fictions : cognitive biases in the conceptualization of fault zones
Shipton ZK, Roberts JJ, Comrie EL, Kremer Y, Lunn RJ, Caine JS
Geological Society Special Publications (2019)
Communicating geoscience in uncertain times
Gibson Hazel, Roberts Jennifer
Geoscientist Vol 28, pp. 26-27 (2018)
The politics of evidence and expertise in democratic innovation
Lightbody Ruth, Roberts Jennifer J
Handbook of Democratic Innovation and Governance (2018) (2018)

more publications

Professional activities

National Geosequestration Laboratory, CSIRO
Visiting researcher
The Inaugural Australian Geoscience Council Conference
Communicating Geoscience: Building Public Interest and Promoting Inclusive Dialogue
Keynote/plenary speaker
PODCAST: Geology is boring, right? What?! NO!
Strathclyde-Sapienza workshop: knowledge exchange on gas monitoring and studying fluid flow in faults
Introduction to CCS: Afternoon of teaching and activities on CCS/CCUS/BECCS for for the NERC Oil & Gas CDT course on Decarbonising Energy

more professional activities


UK CCSRC ICR Jen Roberts
Roberts, Jen (Principal Investigator)
£15,061 award from the UKCCSRC International Research Collaboration (IRC) Fund to support a 3+ month research secondment in Australia.
My visit was hosted by Dr Linda Stalker, Science Director of Australia’s National Geosequestration Laboratory (NGL) in Perth, and Dr Andrew Feitz, Section leader for CO2CRC and International CCS at Geoscience Australia. The research focussed on facilitating knowledge exchange on methods of quantifying CO2 leakage.
20-Jan-2017 - 20-Jan-2017
Early Career Researcher International Travel Fund
Roberts, Jen (Principal Investigator)
Awarded £4,500 to fund a secondment to National Geosequestration Laboratory (NGL) in Perth, Australia. During this secondment, I participated as an expert mentor for the IEAGHG Summer School, assisted fieldwork, and collaborated with Dr Linda Stalker on chemical tracers for offshore CCS projects and issues around quantifying CO2 leakage.
28-Jan-2015 - 19-Jan-2016
The role of expert witnesses in mini-publics: exploring perspectives on the experience and the evidence in deliberative engagement, and how this compares to other citizen forums
Roberts, Jen (Principal Investigator) Lightbody, Ruth (Academic)
01-Jan-2015 - 01-Jan-2017
Emissions from land use change for UK unconventional gas developments
Roberts, Jen (Principal Investigator) Knight, Darren (Researcher)
Reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) is paramount for environmental sustainability, and so any new developments must report on its estimated carbon emissions during and after construction. Energy developments are no exception. The extraction of unconventional gas, which includes Coal Bed Methane (CBM) and shale gas (SG), is currently being explored in the UK. To minimise disruption to local communities, and, to an extent due to the location of the resource, unconventional gas developments may be preferentially positioned in rural areas, where soils are largely vegetated. A study of the lifecycle emissions from extracting these resources in Scotland identified that GHG emissions from land use change (LUC) could be significant where high carbon soils such as peat are disturbed during site construction.
To explore this topic further, we estimated the potential emissions from land use change for three proposed unconventional gas developments in the UK; one to extract CBM in Falkirk (Scotland) and two to explore the SG resource in Lancashire (England).
01-Jan-2015 - 31-Jan-2015
QICS2 Scoping Project: Exploring The Viability And Scientific Opportunities Of A Follow-On Marine Impact Project
Roberts, Jen (Principal Investigator) Naylor, Mark (Principal Investigator)
A key element of risk assessment for the geological storage of CO2 offshore is the monitoring of transport of leaks from the subsurface via shallow sediments in the marine environment, including its effect on the ecosystem. In 2012, the NERC-funded QICS project constructed the first marine in situ controlled sub-seabed release facility for CO2 in the world in Ardmucknish Bay, Oban when 4.2 tonnes of CO2 was injected. There is significant international interest in this unique facility and the project provides an opportunity for the UK to consolidate its leadership in environmental monitoring and impact studies for CCS. This scoping project will explore the viability and potential scientific goals for a follow on project, with the capability of delivering useful knowledge at the start of the UK CCS commercialisation program.
01-Jan-2013 - 30-Jan-2013

more projects


Civil and Environmental Engineering
James Weir Building

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