Background of the establishment of new Faculty

Background of the establishment of new Faculty

The resource science field contains many problems such as rare metals or rare earth, intensifying development competition, technological innovation that causes shale gas renovation, etc. On the other hand, engineers in their twenties and thirties who can flourish globally are insufficient, and resource-related companies demand "personnel with high engineering skills for resource exploration and development" or "personnel capable of negotiating in resource-producing countries." This Faculty of International Resource Sciences established in such circumstances is designed to be the national center of resource sciences in Japan to cultivate personnel who can flourish globally in the forefront of resource sciences.

International situation

Because Japan largely depends on other countries for resources, we cannot ignore the world's trends of resources. There were many movements that may influence future procurement of resources and energy for a few years.

  • Arab Spring
    "Arab Spring" that spread in the Middle Eastern area which is one of the largest suppliers of energy resources. It is required to understand religions, people, economy, cultures, etc. in this area more deeply while the political situation is being fluidized now.
  • Shale gas renovation
    Technology to get petroleum directly from Shale (stone to be petroleum) spreads mainly in America and it is expected that a new petroleum market will be born.

Domestic situation

As the numeric data that energy self-sufficiency is 4% shows, almost all resources needed in Japan depends on imports. It is vital to secure resources stably for continuous development of the economy.

  • Review of energy structure
    After the Tohoku Earthquake and subsequent accident at Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Plant, a mood for requiring to review the energy structure is widely spreading.
  • Methane hydrate
  • It was found that there is a large amount of methane hydrate called "burning ice" in the sea near Japan, and for the first time in the world we succeeded in producing methane gas from methane hydrate at the bottom of the sea. Methane hydrate is expected to be natural gas in future.

Tasks of companies

As it is said that personnel to be in charge of resource development are insufficient in the petroleum industry worldwide, many companies related to resources and energy demand the tough personnel who can flourish globally.

  • Reduction of students who learn resource sciences
    Because resource-related departments at many universities were integrated or closed from the 1990's onwards, the number of places to systematically learn resource sciences decreased significantly. As a result, students who learned resource sciences professionally also decreased.
  • Increase in demands for resource development personnel
    Because the consumption of resources increases worldwide, demands for resource development personnel are increasing. Competition to secure skilled human resources has already started and it has influenced a remarkable rise of salaries in some cases.