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Shining a Spotlight on Energy People: Harry Moss MEI

17/1/2024

6 min read

Head and shoulders photo of Harry Moss MEI, Founder, IM3R Photo: H Moss
Harry Moss MEI, Founder, IM3R Limited

Photo: H Moss

Some 65 million people worldwide work in energy, and a career in this sector can mean collaborating with a multitude of backgrounds in a broad range of countries and regions. The career of Harry Moss MEI, Founder of consultancy IM3R Limited, illustrates this as he reflects on the benefits these experiences have brought him.

Q: Tell us your background and when you first became interested in energy? 
A: I grew up in the UK, in a small village in the Midlands, and had the typical early engineering experiences of the 1970s keeping beaten up cars at the end of life on the road.

 

I became interested in energy through my PhD at Oxford, which was sponsored by the CEGB at Berkley Labs near Bristol and was on the corrosion of spent AGR (advanced gas-cooled reactor) fuel can materials. Obviously with nuclear materials there is an imperative to keep what is inside the container inside for a long length of time.

 

My first job working for GEC Turbines in a heavy engineering and manufacturing environment reinforced my interest in the energy industry.

 

Q: Tell us a little about your current job and industry?  
A: I moved to Australia in 1990 and worked in life assessment research and consultancy for the conventional power generation industry before transitioning to Santos, an upstream oil and gas company, as an integrity engineer. I then joined BP and moved back to the UK to work in upstream, then downstream (refining and petrochemicals), in various integrity, inspection and corrosion management technical leadership roles. I retired about two years ago and set up a consultancy, IM3R Limited.  

 

‘Keeping the hydrocarbons inside the pipe’ has been a constant theme throughout my working life. My job has always been a blend of predictive asset and risk management programmes and reactive integrity failures.  

 

The best part of having a global career has been getting to meet many talented people from diverse cultural backgrounds and collaborating with them on deep technical engineering challenges.

 

Q: Where has collaborating with people from different geographies and backgrounds led to tangible benefits? 
A: I have been lucky to work in many countries: the UK, Netherlands, Belgium, China, Egypt, Mozambique, South Africa, Angola, Algeria, Australia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, the US, Canada, Brazil, Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Thailand, Singapore, Norway and Germany. The culture in each of these countries is unique, different and rich. The benefit in getting to work with engineers and operators in each of these countries is that I appreciate while the company drivers are the same (reliable and safe operations), the people drivers, ie the way people tick, is so different.

 

I realise a foundation of respect and looking at working together as an opportunity to have fun together is the best approach. For example, when I have worked in the Middle East, there is a strong culture of listening, reflecting the speaking. I believe this has helped me improve my approach to enquiry and lead to a more valuable report that I hand over to the client.

 

Q: How has being an MEI benefitted you in your career?  
A: I have been a member of the Energy Institute (EI) for the last three years.  

 

I have been mentored and am mentoring through the EI Connect scheme.  

 

Access to EI resources and publications has been invaluable, a fantastic source for getting up the learning curve on all energy subjects.

 

I have joined various events, the most enjoyable of which have been networking at Young Professional Network events. It is always a pleasure to meet sharp-minded people who are so positive and enthusiastic about the energy transition we are going through.

 

Q: Could you please elaborate on your experiences being mentored and mentoring people?
A: The two mentors I have had through the EI have been kind enough to give me one session each, which gave me a lot of insight into what were the next steps I needed to take. One session each was enough, the discussions supported me to reflect where I was going and what I really wanted to do.

 

I enjoy mentoring people because it is a chance to meet people from different backgrounds and cultures, and seeing new talent coming through. It is a way of giving back to our energy industry and promoting the feeling of being in a community. When I was young, I didn’t have formal mentoring so agonised over career decisions.

 

Q: How are your role and being part of the EI contributing towards a just transition to net zero?
A: Historically my role has been supporting senior leaders in fossil fuel companies to understand integrity and process safety risks and helping to facilitate good asset management decisions.  

 

While such knowledge comes from conventional oil and gas experience, the frameworks and approaches the industry has developed are now mature and are applicable to evolving green energies such as hydrogen, ammonia and biofuels. I believe the challenge is facilitating sharing and transfer of existing knowledge and experience, and customising fit for purpose approaches.  

 

Building bridges between industry and research establishments and universities for collaboration in a real-world environment, and inspiring young engineers to join the transition to net zero, are noble causes I am keen to support.

 

I enjoy mentoring people because it is a chance to meet people from different backgrounds and cultures, and seeing new talent coming through. It is a way of giving back to our energy industry and promoting the feeling of being in a community.

 

Q: Could you explain in more detail how the expertise from fossil fuels can be used to accelerate and drive the transition forwards?
A: The approach in the EI process safety management framework is directly applicable to renewables, although consideration is required for the different risk profiles.

 

The production of biofuels from waste, such as through repurposing used cooking oil, and the marketing, trading, distribution and storage of biofuels, is similar to conventional hydrocarbon products. Skill sets are therefore easily transportable.

 

Adaption rather than innovation is required where possible to accelerate the transition. The expression I have encountered is to ‘shamelessly steal’!

 

Q: How can we encourage more young people to pursue this career path?
A: The transition to net zero as rapidly as possible is imperative for humanity. It requires our best people and greatest minds. This will not be easy; it will require talent from many different disciplines. We don’t need just need engineers, we need arts people and storytellers who can communicate clearly and win the hearts and minds of people. I can’t think of a more creative challenge than to reimagine and rework the way we live.  

 

Ultimately, we need to convey the opportunity to be part of this exciting, essential challenge to young people.

 

The views and opinions expressed in this article are strictly those of the author only and are not necessarily given or endorsed by or on behalf of the Energy Institute.