My typical day…
Essar has developed a clear roadmap to decarbonise its manufacturing operations through a combination of carbon capture and storage, energy efficiency, low carbon hydrogen production and fuel-switching to hydrogen, and that is the space in which my team plays a fundamental role.
The company is playing a leading role in UK industrial decarbonisation and my team does the market analysis and the recommendations which inform our decarbonisation strategy and masterplan. Our ambition is to transform this traditional oil refining and petrochemical business into the largest energy transition hub in Europe.
Based in both the UK and India, my team brings together people with engineering and project management skills and global expertise and perspectives. We invest our time in working together to understand how we deliver the first decarbonised large-scale refinery globally this decade but will also enable the decarbonisation of industries across the Northwest of England and Wales.
I meet daily, or weekly, with our own Essar project managers and their teams developing the various projects which together deliver our decarbonisation plan. Each project fulfils a purpose and I oversee and coordinate the various dependencies and try to unlock perceived and real barriers. This integration is across Essar and contractor groups involved based in Mumbai, the UK, and other parts of the world.
Our site is currently one of the largest greenhouse gas emitters in the Northwest of England and decarbonisation requires access to carbon capture and storage as well as access to hydrogen for fuel switching. To achieve our ambitions, we are dependent on the successful delivery of HyNet, the UK’s leading industrial decarbonisation cluster.
Working with other companies in the cluster is a key part of my working day. ENI is developing the carbon dioxide transport and storage infrastructure to be used by the future emitter plants across the region such as our EET Industrial carbon capture plant and EET Hydrogen, which will produce low carbon hydrogen for the region. The hydrogen transport and storage system is being developed by Cadent, and hydrogen storage, in Cheshire’s salt caverns, is being developed by Innovyn.
As part of this cohesive cluster, I meet regularly with other HyNet partners, and we ensure alignment between our activity so that our projects work alongside those interfacing with our existing and future assets.
I’m also proud to be chair of the Hydrogen Advocacy and CCUS Committee within the Fuels Industry UK Trade Association (formerly the UK Petroleum Industry Association).
As chair, my role, and that of my counterparts from other companies, is to promote and advocate for the role that our sector can play in delivering a net zero UK. We have direct engagement with policy makers and officials and formally respond on behalf of the sector to consultations.
My most memorable work moments…
In my role, I lead our work in developing bid submissions, typically to the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) under their various competition frameworks. These mechanisms offer financial assistance to the private sector to support our own investments and strengthen our efforts in project development to decarbonise assets.
Developing projects and business cases that demonstrate value for money and which result in successful applications is very rewarding. Along with reaching formal completion of stages across the various decarbonisation projects within EET, these are the most memorable parts of my job.
The best part of my job is…
There are loads! I particularly enjoy representing Essar’s strategy, plans and progress on our decarbonisation journey at various European and international conferences.
Every time I do, I see how much has changed and the progress we are making. Overall EET is investing in excess of $2.4Bn in the UK to transform the business into an energy transition hub. We will provide the low carbon energy vectors the market will need in the future and knowing that my actions and decisions, as well as those of my team, are helping to shape that transformation is what motivates me every day.
I relax after work by…
Hitting the gym, a passion I managed to pass on to my son Alex. To get there, I walk through Chester town centre and, every day, I can’t help but notice new amazing features amongst the literally hundreds of astonishingly well-preserved Tudor and Georgian buildings that make up this Roman city.
I have visited many, many cities and towns across the UK, but Chester must rank amongst the top, most beautiful, history-rich and harmonious places I have been too. If you haven’t been here yet, I strongly recommend you pencil Chester for your next weekend out!