Since the falling price of oil started to bite in the north-east, it has been clear that the energy sector needs urgent support to protect the tens of thousands of jobs that are at risk.
We were told last year that 65,000 people working on North Sea projects had been made redundant. The potential long-term impact of the job cuts to the future of the sector is significant.
With no increase to prices in sight, we face the prospect of an emerging skills gap as older staff retire and younger workers are laid off and unable to gain the experience needed to move up the career ladder in Scotland.
We have always known that a mature basin like the North Sea requires careful management. But I do not agree with those who say that Aberdeen is finished as Scotland and the UK’s energy capital.
Holyrood hosted a Scottish Parliament debate this week during which the Green Party suggested that oil and gas workers could usefully be employed cutting down trees. I am not sure how many geologists, drill supervisors or highly-skilled welders had previously considered a career as a lumberjack.
I am, however, certain that this number will not have increased as a result of the debate at the Scottish Parliament.
Willie Rennie is the leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats and MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife.