Tim Burnett, General Manager Market Innovation

About you

Tell us a bit about your organisation (who are you, where do you operate)

Wärtsilä is a global leader in innovative technologies and lifecycle solutions for the marine, offshore energies and energy markets. Our focus on innovation in sustainable technology and services helps our customers to continuously improve their environmental and economic performance.

Our dedicated team of 17,000 professionals in more than 200 locations in 68 countries shape the decarbonisation transformation of our industries across the globe.

What is keeping you busy currently? What large projects are you working on?

The energy transition is keeping us really busy right now. Our R&D department are working on a number of exciting developments. However, for me, we are working on Autonomous Operations for powerplants, lean vessels and offshore assets and energy hubs.

What are some of the opportunities/challenges you see for your organisation in the future?

For us in Wartsila serving the Offshore Energies sector, the biggest challenge is informing the sector on how we may help them transition towards net zero. Apart from flaring and venting, the power generation process (whether that is for pure power generation or propulsion) is one of the largest contributors to emissions. We are developing our products to operate safely and efficiently on the future fuels which are under consideration. Having said that, we see the energy transition as our biggest opportunity – as we can play a key role in our customers decarbonisation journey.

How would you describe the company culture? Do you have any specific shared values?

The culture within our organisation could be summarised in the following four words: Inclusive, diverse, respectful, and caring. Wärtsilä’s shared values are enshrined in the Wartsila Way, they are as follows: Customer success, Passion, and Performance.

About your OEUK membership

As a larger organisation how is OEUK membership helping your business?

“Pathway towards a net zero basin” helped shape our Oil and Gas decarbonisation strategy. We were able to frame our customers’ needs and how we may support them into three progressive steps, which dovetail into the targets and timelines set out in the document.

Which OEUK event did you most enjoy and why?

The Electrification in The Making event held in Aberdeen on 27th April 2022. As members of the consortium who jointly won the NSTA Electrification Competition, we were given the opportunity to showcase our solution to the sector on how we can significantly advance offshore electrification in a safe, cost efficient and timely manner.

OEUK has over fourteen forums, which forum do you attend and what do you like most about that particular forum?

The Energy Transition forum for us is particularly beneficial. It shows us what’s required from our sector to decarbonise in a timely manner. Participation in this helps us keep focus on what our customers need, in order to plan their energy transition. The other forum which we have just become an active part of is the Environmental Forum. We are adapting our products to operate safely and efficiently on the future fuels under consideration. This work is being carried out in our Sustainable Technology Hub in Vassa, Finland. Initiatives such as the Environmental forum helps to give us a signal of the direction of travel which the sector is heading, with regard to the chosen fuels which will ultimately give energy to our industry.

Future of the industry

What are the biggest net zero changes you have seen in our industry?

Collaboration is now beginning to happen at scale. Partnerships are forming that once would have been unthinkable. We need openness and collaboration in order to deliver the most efficient energy transition.

How do you see the industry looking in 20 years?

A cleaner, more efficient industry as a direct result of the energy transition, and certainly one becoming more dependent on digital capabilities. Here in Wartsila, we are working on the further development of autonomous vessels. If we transfer this over to the offshore energies sector, we then think Normally Unattended Installations. This not only reduces cost but increases safety and has environmental benefits too.

How is your organisation driving the transition to net zero?

We have recently inaugurated our Sustainable Technology Hub in Vaasa Finland. This is where we carry out the majority of our research and development which is centred around the energy transition, we also have a large proportion of our manufacturing carried out there. We are fortunate that we also serve the marine and energy sectors, so we benefit from a tremendous amount of experience across those sectors which can be cross-pollinated to our Offshore Energies segment. We have also created a Decarbonisation Academy for our employees to better equip them when helping our customers.

Working together, producing cleaner energies