Alasdair Green of AAB looks back at this year’s Offshore Europe.
Aberdeen was buzzing during Offshore Europe – everyone and everything was on top form! Hotels, restaurants and after parties were full, the sun was shining and people were smiling. It was a time to be proud of our city and surroundings, and to celebrate our diverse Energy sector.
The event was a success; from its organisation and world-class facilities, to the excellent bus transport arrangements and many other factors. For everyone including thousands of international visitors, it was hugely impressive. Offshore Europe confidently keeps Aberdeen on the world map.
The headline theme of “Accelerating the transition to a better energy future” through the areas of security, transition, talent and innovation was clear to be seen and well delivered. It was perhaps just a shame that this message did not seem to find its way into the national media.
There is so much more to the Energy sector than many outside Aberdeen appear to understand, and it is regrettable that this does not always seem to land well. If any other UK city had an economic boost such as we had in early September, we would have certainly heard a lot about it. But these are other issues, we were at Offshore Europe to celebrate the diversity of the sector and our clients.
A secure, affordable and uninterrupted energy supply is essential and is the top priority. The North Sea has helped deliver this and continues to give us answers to achieving a more sustainable balance for decades to come. Key to security success today is safely delivering cost efficiencies and performance whilst addressing environmental impact.
This is clear to see throughout the sector from hydrocarbon companies investing in hydrogen and carbon capture to a growing renewables sector. It’s hugely rewarding to see the supply chain responding to this by finding their inflexion points in everything from servicing offshore wind to unlocking the geothermal prize and solving emissions issues.
Understandably, mixed messages in the media today about Energy and climate change can be confusing for young people. How can we expect them to commit to career choices in a sector with so much uncertainty. Looking at it from a security, transition and technology standpoint however, arguably it’s one of the biggest sectors offering lifelong growth, challenge and reward. The University of Aberdeen are commended for demonstrating this so well at Offshore Europe.
For Offshore Europe events in the past, we would not have dreamed of the outstanding advances in innovation and technology we have today. This is no longer the future, and it is emerging at pace today. Application of AI, digital tech and smart tech will be transformative in unlocking security and transition and these are major opportunities for our future talent.
AAB’s commitment to the Energy sector
On a daily basis at AAB we are in a privileged position to see first-hand what our clients are doing to address key issues outlined in the themes of the show. AAB supports businesses throughout the sector to thrive in a changing world through the delivery of business-critical people and finance services. We took a stand for the first time where we demonstrated our commitment to the energy sector and our clients. We were proud to be part of the Offshore Europe community.
On our stand attended by more than 60 team members throughout the week, we responded to the key event themes with short presentations in areas such as international movement of people, innovation investment and relief, change and transformation, lean business models, managing talent and sending and receiving goods overseas.
The next 50 years – a confident and optimistic future
For more than 50 years the world has come to Aberdeen for our energy sector. In return Aberdeen has delivered back phenomenal exports in our people, skills and technology. We’ve worked hard to build this and cannot afford to let go of it. What we have today is crucial to the next chapters as it gives us the answers to tackling the key energy issues of today.
This year, Offshore Europe celebrated all of this and gave us plenty of reasons to be confident and optimistic for the future. The energy sector demonstrated clearly that it continues to adapt and overcome and so for these reasons we look forward to the next 50 years of Offshore Europe.