“We are as passionate about the climate challenge as Extinction Rebellion and people that protest from the outside. It’s the fire that gets us up in the morning to do the job we do.”
Hannah Mary Goodlad is clear in her want to highlight the fundamental part traditional oil and gas companies have to play in getting the world to the Holy Grail of net zero.
As the head of Baltic Sea area development for Norwegian energy giant Equinor, there are those who view her and the company as part of the problem.
But for Hannah, and many other like her, a career in oil and gas offers a chance to “be that change”, something she says is “very unique”.
She said: “Climate change is personal. It’s far more personal to my generation than it is to older generations because it’s going to be something that we live with. That builds a sense of urgency and a clear road by which we have to travel down.”
Hannah added: “Often the industry is viewed as part of the problem for all the wrong reasons. In many ways it has a lot of the solutions that the world needs to tackle climate change.
“Many of us entered the energy industry for that very reason, to be the change that we needed to see in the world, to be closer to these huge problems and to actually create the solutions.”
In order to spotlight work that’s ongoing within the industry to drive the transition, Hannah came up with the idea to tour around Scotland visiting innovative low carbon projects.
A group comprising six members of the Energy Institute’s Aberdeen Young Professionals Network (YPN) travelled 500 miles across the country by ferry, electric vehicle and train.
Along the way they interviewed energy experts and graduates to create a record of work being done to transform the energy sector.
Stops along the ‘Future Energy 500 Tour’ journey included the Acorn carbon capture and storage (CCS) project at the St Fergus gas plant, Aberdeenshire, Whitelee wind farm, the UK’s largest wind farm, and Orbital Marine Power’s O2 tidal turbine in Orkney, the most powerful of its kind in the world.
The findings from the excursion have been turned into a special documentary that will be premiered at an event at ScottishPower’s headquarters in Glasgow tomorrow.
It will be followed by a panel discussion, during which experts and industry leaders will debate the key recommendations of the film.
A trailer for the film can be watched here.
Hannah said: “Of course, it’s a great opportunity for the companies to showcase themselves, but it’s deeper than that.
“It’s about the industry as a whole, working together to really show what collaboration does at that level and what happens when likeminded people have this mind-set change of interdependency.
“I rely on you, you rely on me, and we have to do this together, otherwise, we’ll fail. That was a real learning for us as we as we toured around Scotland.”
Taking part in the tour, which was sponsored by CNOOC and Worley, alongside Hannah were Michael Howie, Anna Maclaren, Craig Cuthbertson, Andrew Tillie and Daniel Gear.
The premier of the film will take place as world leaders meet in Glasgow for the landmark COP26 climate change summit that kicked off on Sunday.
US President Joe Biden arrived in the city yesterday for the event, which will run until the end of next week.
Many are hoping COP26 will yield a step change in efforts to address climate change and commitments from government’s to rapidly reduce carbon emissions.
Unsurprisingly, much of the debate so far has focussed on oil and gas and to what extent the industry should be involved in the event.
Michael Howie said: “For us, it’s really important that the next generation gets a voice to share what they see in the future. Ultimately, we will be the ones that inherit the industry in the coming years and we want to be seen as part of the solution.
“That means working together with industry experts and senior figures to really take the reins and come up with different ideas.”