Marine Conference & Dinner 2023 Speakers

  • Richard Arnold

    Richard Arnold

    Policy Director, Marine Energy Council

    Richard has ten years’ experience within energy policy, public affairs, and communications advising FTSE 100 Companies on engagement with the UK Government, devolved administrations, and EU institutions.

    He joined the Marine Energy Council (MEC) as Policy Director in January 2022 from SSE where he worked in a variety of roles including Head of External Relations for its networks business and as Project Director of the company’s Brexit preparations.

    He led the Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks’ (SSEN) COP26 engagement programme, launching a first of its kind international knowledge sharing partnership for distribution networks, alongside the University of Oxford, Enel and Ausgrid.

    Since its formation in 2018 the UK (MEC) has facilitated collaboration between, and represented the interests of, leading wave and tidal technology and project developers, supply chain companies, consultants, and renewable industry associations in the UK.

  • Sue Barr

    Sue Barr

    Chair, Marine Energy Council

    Sue has 22 years in the wind, wave and tidal sectors. Her roles include tidal technology development, operations management, project delivery, policy advocacy, financing and global markets.
    A Board member of Marine Energy Wales, a Non-Executive Director of Marine Power Systems and a Director of the Global Underwater Hub, Sue also chairs the UK Marine Energy Council. The recipient of the 2018 SUT Award for ‘Outstanding Contributions to Marine Energy’ and awarded Ocean Energy Europe’s Vi Maris 2019 award, Sue has a key role in the marine energy sector internationally. As Director of Marine at Simply Blue Group, Sue brings her extensive experience to the group.

  • Ian Crossland

    Ian Crossland

    Commercial Director, Mocean Energy

    Ian is an accomplished and results-oriented C-level business executive with 15 years of experience directing overall aspects of technology development and commercialisation within Oil and Gas sector, and most recently moved into the renewables sector as part of the energy transition with Mocean energy. He has spent the last 10 years within SME’s technology companies, mainly to develop and deploy disruptive technologies to highly conservative and forward-thinking end users. Prior to this Ian spent his earlier part of his career with Schlumberger working both domestically and internationally.

  • Beth Dickens

    Beth Dickens

    Director and Founder, Quoceant

    Beth is a experienced chartered engineer with over 20 years' experience at the forefront of marine renewables. She has extensive first-hand experience of the support requirements of offshore systems, and how to work in the marine environment safely and cost effectively; this has driven her recent focus on the development of enabling technologies and connection systems for marine renewables. Beth uses her broad understanding of project issues and their operational impacts, combined with her practical experience to successfully manage projects through the engineering life-cycle. Beth was named one of the Top 50 Women in Engineering: Inventors and Innovators in 2022.

  • Matthew Finn

    Matthew Finn

    Commercial Director, EMEC

    Mathew has worked in the wave and tidal sector for over 15 years helping organisations to develop new areas of research and technology development. Based in Orkney he has first hand experience of a wide range of deployments at the EMEC sites and has recently helped to raise over £200M in funding to support projects in wave energy, tidal energy, floating wind, hydrogen and energy systems.

  • Tim Hurst

    Tim Hurst

    Managing Director, Wave Energy Scotland

    Wave Energy Scotland’s Managing Director Tim Hurst is a familiar name in marine energy circles, now managing Scotland’s leading wave technology development programme. After almost 4 years in the driving seat, his team of 15 has awarded £38.6 M in 86 different contracts working with more than 200 separate engineering and academic institutions. He says, “Scotland is an incredible hub for wave energy testing and WES is driving the country’s progress. Our latest Innovation Call for Quick Connection Systems is about to close soon and we’re about to see the most promising NWEC technologies test at sea next year in Scotland. Projects from our PTO programme have developed four strong power take-off options and with Structural Materials projects concluding alongside Controls Systems technologies, next year is looking very exciting for WES.

  • Claire Mack 2022

    Claire Mack

    Chief Executive, Scottish Renewables

    Claire has been Chief Executive of Scottish Renewables, the representative voice of Scotland’s renewable energy industry, since October 2017. She is responsible for leading the organisation’s work to grow Scotland’s renewables sector and sustain its position at the forefront of the global clean energy industry.

    Claire is a member of the First Minister’s Energy Advisory Board and is co-chair of the Renewable Energy Strategic Leadership Group. She is also co-chair of the Scottish Government Marine Energy Industry Group.

    Claire is a member of SSEN’s Network for Net Zero Stakeholder Group and a member of the Centre for Work-Based Learning in Scotland Advisory Group.

    Claire was awarded the University of Strathclyde’s STELAR award for executive leadership within the industry in 2021 and is also an honorary fellow of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society.

    Before joining Scottish Renewables, Claire was Director of Policy and Place at the Scottish Council for Development and Industry. She has previously worked in various roles at Ofcom in Scotland, focusing on economic regulation of telecoms, radio spectrum and the mail market while also looking at developing digital participation of individuals and businesses.

  • Gavin McPherson

    Gavin McPherson

    Associate Director of Policy & Research, Nova Innovation

    Gavin McPherson is Associate Director of Policy and Research at Nova Innovation, a world leading tidal energy device and project developer. In 2016 Nova deployed the world’s first offshore tidal array in the Bluemull Sound, Shetland. The project has generated clean power to the grid for over 7 years. In 2023 the company doubled the size of the array to 6 turbines – the most turbines ever deployed in a single project. The array incorporates a Tesla battery and the world’s first 100% tidal powered electric vehicle charging point. In 2023 Nova deployed its first turbine in France and will install the first turbine in a 15-turbine project in Canada. Nova is developing projects in the UK, Europe, Canada, and Indonesia. Gavin heads up Nova’s research programme and holds a PhD in Particle Physics from work conducted at the CERN laboratory in Geneva.

  • Andrew Scott

    Andrew Scott

    Chief Executive Officer, Orbital Marine Power

    Andrew leads the team at Orbital Marine Power, having joined the business as CEO in 2015, and has a background of nearing 20 years at the forefront of the marine renewables industry; in both pioneering wave and tidal development programmes.
    Andrew has a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Strathclyde University and a postgraduate in Energy from Heriot-Watt University. Since taking the helm at Orbital Andrew has directed a targeted engineering process to generate a strikingly innovative technological solution that can enable a new global market in an entirely new renewable energy sector. Complimenting this Andrew is the driving force that generates the vision for the company to engage across stakeholder bases and works closely with the financial and commercial elements of the team to deliver an inspiring breakthrough business focused on helping turn the tide on climate change.

  • David Taaffe

    David Taaffe

    Chief Operating Officer, SAE Renewables

    David has over 20 years’ experience in leading the delivery of large-scale renewable energy projects. For over a decade he has played a lead role in the MeyGen tidal energy project from early-stage development in 2011 through to financial close in 2014 and then led it through the construction phase into commercial operations in 2018. This pioneering project is the largest operating in the world and since 2018 has delivered over 50GWh of predictable energy to the grid which represents a very significant portion of overall global tidal stream energy production. David and his team at SAE are responsible for the management of a portfolio of projects and operational sites which includes the ongoing O&M of the MeyGen array, expansion of MeyGen and several utility scale Battery Energy Storage System projects.

  • Tim Warren

    Tim Warren

    Operations Director, Blackfish Engineering Design

    Tim has been at the forefront of wave and tidal mechanical design since 2007, and has expertise in composite rotor blades, pitch control mechanisms, sealing, power take off design, nacelle structures and subsea clamping. As well as the Tidal Generation 500kW and 1MW installed prototypes, he has worked on the Mocean Blue X device and most of the installed leading tidal turbines. More recently he has led the testing and validation work for SenseWind, helping to develop their innovative technology.

    Tim holds a Masters degree in Aerospace Engineering and is a chartered engineer.

  • Morag Watson 2022

    Morag Watson

    Director of Policy, Scottish Renewables

    Morag is Scottish Renewables’ Director of Policy. Her work involves overseeing Scottish Renewables’ policy function and key projects within Scotland’s leading renewables trade body, working on behalf of 300+ organisations to grow Scotland’s renewable energy sector and sustain its position at the forefront of the global clean energy industry.
    Morag has worked in policy for nearly 20 years and was previously a Senior Policy Officer with WWF Scotland, specialising in climate change, sustainable development and sustainability leadership.

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