Education top priority in Oil & Gas development – Dr. Vincent Adams

DPI, Guyana, Sunday 24 June, 2018

As Guyana takes steps to first oil in 2020, it has been underscored that keen attention must be paid to education when it comes to development of the oil and gas industry.

This view was made by Dr. Vincent Adams, in a recent interview with the Department of Public Information (DPI).

Dr. Vincent Adams.

Dr. Adams is currently in Guyana working closely with the University of Guyana to establish its Department of Petroleum and Engineering. He is currently the ‘Visiting Distinguished Engineer in Residence’ at UG and is assisting in the restructuring and revamping the Faculty of Technology to cater to the oil and gas sector.

Dr.  Adams has served in top positions under the United States Department of Energy (DOE) and has 40 years of experience in environmental management, groundwater and petroleum production fields, including 30 years with the DOE.

Adams said that education has always been and must continue to be the number one priority. He said that based on his experience, an educated nation is what attracts not only oil companies but major companies operating worldwide, to invest.

“Those CEO’s and companies will say unequivocally, that the number one criteria for attracting them is a sound education system. It’s the one thing that attracts them to countries to invest. I would definitely advise that there has to be a significant investment in education.”

He added that a large portion of the money derived from petroleum should be targeted towards the education sector because “petroleum is not infinite.” Dr. Adams said the highest priority should be a vision, ensuring that Guyana is ready for when production ends. He referenced Linden’s unpreparedness for when bauxite would no longer be as productive as before.

“The one thing that we have got to understand is that petroleum is a depletable resource. I grew up in Linden where the bauxite company brought a lot of social benefits to the communities, sports, education and everything else, but we were not prepared for when bauxite would go. So, now we have got to prepare and have a vision for what’s going to happen when petroleum is gone. I’m sure this is a part of the government’s plan too.”

Adams further stated that having the vision and foundation would allow the country to have a great future. “If we lay the foundation with a sound education system, focusing on areas that are really sustainable, which aren’t depletable, (like agriculture), that will really sustain us. If we invest in education as a whole, agriculture and probably manufacturing, I think we have got a great future.”

Dr. Adams opined that agriculture is Guyana’s future and that he is aware of President David Granger commitment to a developing a sustainable agricultural industry. “I think based on everything I’ve read so far, he’s committed to agriculture, he’s committed to the green economy… that’s going to continue for years.”

By: Stephon Gabriel.