A NEW report from Offshore Energies UK (OEUK) finds that a “homegrown energy transition” could see the North Sea’s workforce increase by up to 50% to 225,000 by 2030.
The vast majority – more than 90% – of workers in oil and gas production and its supply chain have skills that are potentially transferrable to renewable production, including onshore and offshore wind, carbon capture and clean hydrogen energy production.
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The report also calls on a commitment between government and industry to show a clear pathway between related sectors to ensure a seamless transition for the workforce.
It’s also calling on adaptation of education systems to benefit students pursuing technical instead of academic pathways, and calls on better long-term funding for apprenticeships at all levels.
The Workforce Insight report also calls on the a fairer tax regime in the North Sea that could incentivise up to £200 billion of investment in homegrown renewable energy.
“Our world class workforce is key to providing affordable, reliable, lower carbon energy which creates jobs, grows the economy, and cuts emissions,” said Katy Heidenreich OEUK’s director of supply chain and people.
“This cannot be a debate about oil and gas versus renewables. We need to support both oil and gas and renewable energy since they are increasingly the remit of the same companies and the same people.
“Instead, it needs to be a conversation about unlocking the full potential of our people. If we get this investment it will mean the UK can scale up to reach 50GW of wind and 10GW of hydrogen, and speed the development of at least 4 clusters of carbon capture and storage projects by 2030.
“That is what the future could look like, but our research shows we need more action to address skill shortages and to recognise the huge value in the existing workforce.
“We need to continue to collaborate over this issue, and industry continues to work with politicians of all parties as well as policymakers to signpost where transformational action could be realised.”