DNV report: Energy pros confident about growth


DNV, the independent energy expert and assurance provider, revealed a resilient optimism within the energy sector, despite prevailing caution. According to DNV’s annual Industry Insight Survey, 73% percentof senior energy professionals express confidence in the industry’s growth trajectory for the upcoming year, a figure that has remained steady at about 74 percent since 2022, reflecting a resolute stance amid turbulence.

“The transition toward a sustainable energy future is not just desirable; it’s imperative,” said Ditlev Engel, CEO Energy Systems at DNV. “Key drivers of optimism include the relentless march toward decarbonization and electrification, offering long-term clarity amid near term uncertainty. Understanding this shift as a necessary progression aligns with the industry commitments under the Paris Agreement, reinforcing its determination to drive meaningful change. Consequently, the industry’s optimism about the path ahead is well-founded – especially since the requisite technologies are already within our reach.”

However, beneath this apparent stability lies a complex landscape of shifting dynamics. While the industry as a whole maintains a positive outlook, specific sectors, such as electric power and renewables, have witnessed notable declines from previous peaks.

DNV’s survey stresses nearly two-thirds of the energy sector view global political uncertainty as the primary threat to success over the coming year. Specifically, DNV’s study reveals nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of respondents perceive the 2024 wave of elections and potential policy shifts as one of the steepest barriers to growth. Political uncertainty, which ranked as the 13th major concern in 2022, surged to sixth place in 2023.

2024 marks a record year for elections, with more than 2 billion people heading to the polls. The prospect of continued policy upheaval is of particular concern in the Americas, with 71 percent of Latin American and 67 percent of North American energy professionals highlighting political issues, reflecting the polarized landscape of energy and climate politics. Given its importance to the global energy sector, the outcome of the upcoming elections in the United States holds particularly significant implications for energy industry sentiment and strategic planning.

“For decades, the energy sector has faced enduring political risks, evolving from localized tensions to global challenges affecting every aspect of the industry,” Engel said. “A key challenge is to secure lasting regulatory support and clear visibility into the future to rapidly deploy existing technologies.”

Optimism among respondents in electrical power has dipped from 87 percent to 76 percent, while renewables have experienced a similar downward trend, from 87 percent to 78 percent. This decline mirrors a broader shift in industry growth expectations and organizational confidence, with rising costs and supply chain disruptions pose significant hurdles to project viability and the pace of energy transition. Notably, the electric power industry faces a pronounced shortage of skilled talent, hindering progress in energy transition, and digital initiatives. Meanwhile, renewables grapple with regulatory hurdles and intensifying market competition. 

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