ExxonMobil is donating $2 million to LSU to support carbon capture research, student scholarships and workforce development programs, the company and university announced Tuesday.
The energy giant will become a “strategic partner” for LSU’s Institute for Energy Innovation, which was established last year when Shell donated a total of $27.5 million to the university. LSU and ExxonMobil will pair up for research into carbon capture, advanced recycling, batteries and solar power, according to a news release.
Carbon capture — the burgeoning yet controversial technology aims to trap carbon dioxide emissions at industrial sites and bury them deep underground — will be a key focus of the pact. The donation should help expand the scope of LSU’s new carbon capture utilization and storage curriculum.
“One of the most impactful elements of our Scholarship First Agenda is a heightened focus on working with industry leaders like ExxonMobil to create solutions that will elevate lives,” LSU President William F. Tate IV said in a statement. “ExxonMobil has been an exemplary partner to LSU for more than 40 years, and this new investment extends our relationship to provide vital funding for innovative research, community engagement, student mentorship and scholarships that span STEM and the humanities.”
The gift will also support LSU’s Future Scholars Pipeline Initiative, which aims to create an educational pathway for public school students in north Baton Rouge to attend LSU with full tuition coverage. It also provides more funding for the ExxonMobil Energy Scholars Program within LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication and ExxonMobil’s Diversity Scholars program in the LSU College of Engineering.
“LSU is an important resource for ExxonMobil as we further invest in Louisiana to hire our future workforce, produce the products our world needs and be a leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” ExxonMobil Baton Rouge Chemical Plant Manager Dave Luecke said in a statement. “These are two critical issues of great importance, both necessitating an inclusive approach with the full cooperation of our communities and universities like LSU.”
ExxonMobil, through donations from its foundation, employees and retirees, has given $35 million to LSU since 1993, company officials said.
The agreement will also make ExxonMobil an official sponsor of LSU athletics.