Looking back to move forward – where next for HSE?

Last month’s OGUK HSE Conference was inevitably going to involve discussions on Covid. It is inevitable, but also incredible, to reflect on how fast the industry adapted and worked together to manage the pandemic.


Financing developments driving growth of renewables

Like so many other parts of the economy, Scotland’s renewable and alternative energy sector has not avoided the impact of the global pandemic. The recent UK Budget set out a variety of key climate and environment measures that, alongside other political and market developments, may re-energise the sector following the recent difficulties.


CMS: Doing the right thing

It has become something of a cliché that the Millennial and Gen Z generations are more environmentally conscious and values-driven than their predecessors in the workplace. The Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2020 showed that there is still truth in that cliché, and despite the financial hardship and anxiety of the last 12 months, younger workers remain focused on larger societal issues and the need to drive positive change in their communities and around the world. This is seen as presenting a challenge to the sector in terms of attracting new recruits.


Can you require employees to have the Covid vaccination?

The rapid roll out of Covid-19 vaccinations offers some light at the end of the tunnel after a year of restrictions, economic hardship and illness, and has been welcomed by most of the population. However, some remain concerned about the speed at which the vaccines have been developed. Surveys have reported that perhaps a third of UK citizens would be reluctant to receive the vaccine for various reasons including the potential unknown, long-term side-effects.


What does the future hold?

That’s what we are all asking as we approach the New Year. We are all hoping that the advent of vaccines will mean 2021 is more “normal” than 2020. However, the pandemic has also coincided with, and possibly accelerated, a more fundamental change in our society – our response to the climate crisis, so the new “normal” will be different to the old “normal”.


Looking forward to Brexit?

The theme for this issue of Energy Voice is looking back on 2020 and looking forward to 2021 – I think most of us can’t wait to put 2020 behind us, so I thought I would focus on the future. One thing the future holds for us is Brexit.


Covid may be accelerating energy transition

At the beginning of 2020 CMS launched a report examining the energy transition strategies of 15 of the world’s largest oil and gas companies to assess how far they are committed to new and alternative energy. It revealed how these firms were, at that time, investing 3% of capex budgets into renewables with a strong emphasis on wind and solar technologies.


Decommissioning – what’s the state of play?

The dramatic fall in the oil price at the start of the year has accelerated decisions by some operators to move to cessation of production, with announcements from Premier on Balmoral and Enquest on Thistle, Heather, Deveron and Broom.


CMS: Leading in a crisis

There are as many opinions of good leadership as there are management books and business schools.  For me, the important priorities are being honest, transparent and authentic, having a clear vision of your goal, a clear strategy to reach that goal, and the empathy, energy, commitment and confidence to inspire your team to work collaboratively towards it. It is also important to innovate, to do things differently, to find new ways, to be agile and to be supportive. Communication of all of this is key.


Successful innovation requires good corporate governance

The energy industry is in the midst of a deep and wide-ranging digital transformation.  While Covid-19 and lower oil and gas prices have disrupted many investment programmes, the direction of travel is clear – the industry needs to continue to invest in innovation and the development and deployment of new processes and technologies.   Not to do so risks being left behind.


HSE’s guiding role amid Covid crisis

Two years ago, on the 30th anniversary of the Piper Alpha disaster we wrote about the challenges facing the North Sea: the large, experienced operators replaced with new entrants to the world of exploration, production and operatorship, the tight budgets and contractor margins.


Stick to letter of the law

The challenges of the combination of Covid-19 and the fall in the oil price continue to place enormous stress on the industry. While those offshore have remained at their workplaces, albeit in smaller numbers and under strange and difficult circumstances, in order to maintain production from the UKCS, others who have now spent two months working from home are beginning to consider a return to the office or work site.


CMS: Lockdown’s legal issues

We are all getting used to the challenges of the lockdown. As it becomes clear that this situation is going to continue for some time, we need to consider the legal implications of the stress caused to businesses by the double blows of Covid-19 and the oil price fall.