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Energy transition will be centre stage at online SPE Offshore Europe virtual conference

By Calum MacLeod

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A panel session at SPE Offshore Europe's last physical conference in 2019.
A panel session at SPE Offshore Europe's last physical conference in 2019.

Energy transition topics will take centre stage at the SPE Offshore Europe 2021 virtual conference taking place from September 7-10 2021.

SPE Offshore Europe 2021 conference chairman and executive vice president oilfield equipment at Baker Hughes, Neil Saunders and SPE president 2022 Kamel Ben-Naceur will welcome delegates to the four day, SPE-curated programme comprising of an opening plenary, 10 keynote, and 14 technical sessions incorporating more than 50 technical papers.

Seven of the 10 keynote sessions and half the technical programme will be related to energy transition subjects.

Keynote sessions with a net zero focus include: Delivering carbon capture, utilisation and storage; CCUS and hydrogen at scale; energy islands; roadmaps to net zero; scaling up digital to enable a low-carbon industry; facilities of the future and breaking the silo paralysis.

During the opening plenary, Chris Stark, chief executive of the Committee on Climate Change will join Gordon Birrell, executive vice president, production and operations at BP; Al Cook, executive vice president, development and production international at Equinor and Phil Kirk, chief executive of Harbour Energy for a panel session on the event theme: Oil and Gas: Working Together for a Net Zero Future.

For the first time in the history of the biennial event, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the conference and exhibition have been split.

The virtual conference will be followed by the in-person exhibition across February 1-4 2022, which will include new keynote conference content that will be developed after the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) taking place in Glasgow in early November 2021.

Oil and gas industry leaders, innovators and decision-makers will reconvene in person at the P&J Live in Aberdeen to advance the energy transition outcomes and realign strategies.

Mr Saunders said: “The conference programme at SPE Offshore Europe has always been a must-attend event for those wanting to keep in touch with industry-leading thinking strategically and at a technical level. The industry’s path to decarbonisation and role in supporting net zero is top of the agenda this year, and with COP26 just seven weeks later, the programme promises to be a real curtain-opener.

“The future of oil and gas in the energy mix is in our hands and SPE Offshore Europe gives us the chance to work together, before and after COP26, to secure our place in a net zero future.”

Kevin Gallagher, SPE Offshore Europe 2021 technical committee chairman and digital transformation lead, CNOOC International commented: “The offshore industry has an important role to play in the transition to the low carbon economy. The timing of the conference, prior to COP26, and content of the technical programme are both opportune and highly relevant as we experience an acceleration of the energy transition and the industry response.

"Audience members will have the opportunity to join high quality sessions ranging from decarbonisation, floating wind and hydrogen to drilling and decommissioning. We look forward to informative and inspiring technical sessions which prompt numerous important discussions at this pivotal time for our industry.”

The virtual conference programme will begin each day at noon (BST) to accommodate international participants. Full programme details and registration can be found here.

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