The energy transition faces a dual challenge of retaining vital expertise from the oil & gas sector and attracting new talent with skillsets in areas such as digitalisation, said the CEO of newly-created global energy consultancy Vysus Group.

David Clark said the shift to cleaner energy sources will by held back if the skills base built up over decades in fossil fuel sectors is allowed to melt away.

The global industry must “leverage on the significant experience base in legacy oil & gas markets” in areas like large-scale project management, Clark told Recharge.

“The skillsets in the oil & gas sector… will still be needed to supply feedstock fuels in clean systems” and in large-scale carbon capture and storage, he predicted.

“The skillsets are there, they need to be deployed – we need to make sure we don’t lose that expertise of project management.”

At the same time the energy transition will need “new talent, new engineering expertise” in fields such as software.

Clark will head 650 employees working for Vysus, formerly the energy business of unit of Lloyd’s Register before an agreement to sell it to investment group Inspirit Capital.

The consultancy’s wide-ranging presence includes roles in offshore wind project work across the world, building on experience in the UK where the company has “probably been involved in at least 50% of the projects in operation or construction”.

Clark predicted companies like his will have an ever-increasing role in a transitioning energy industry as major players move into sectors governed by separate regulatory regimes, and with “different mindsets, different cultures, different approaches”.