Hydrogen jobs at risk as Shell moves to cut roles from 'low carbon' wing

Dutch oil major Shell will cut at least 200 jobs from its low-carbon solutions (LCS) business segment, the company has confirmed, as it continues to pivot back towards oil extraction and supply efforts. 

Shell said at least 200 jobs would be cut from their Low Carbon Solutions business (pic credit: Matthew Horwood/Getty Images)

A Shell spokesperson told Windpower Monthly the move was part of a plan to focus on “performance” and simplification in its LCS business, which includes hydrogen production. It is also reviewing an additional 130 jobs in its LCS segment.

Shell’s LCS business includes decarbonisation efforts linked to transport such as hydrogen production, but does not include its renewable energy operations such as wind power.  

The spokesperson would not confirm how many of the affected jobs are related to hydrogen, and added that the cuts and review are part of a pivot from light mobility such as use in passenger cars to heavy mobility such as in heavy goods vehicles.

They confirmed that the jobs cuts would not affect the carbon capture and storage and "nature-based solutions" activities of its LCS segment.

Some of the roles cut will be integrated into other parts of Shell, the spokesperson added, but they would not confirm which parts of the company the jobs would be moved to.

The job cuts follow Shell CEO Wael Sawan’s announcement earlier this year that the company would pivot back towards oil extraction and supply efforts amid bumper fossil fuel profits. 

Sawan said in June the company was scrapping its plan to reduce oil output by 1-2% each year, insisting that the oil major’s low-carbon solutions efforts should not come at the expense of profits. 

Shell’s announced pivot back towards oil and gas was accompanied alongside announcements that Shell would invest between $10-15 billion in “low-carbon” energy solutions including natural gas, hydrogen production, EV charging and renewables between 2023 and 2025. 

The company recorded record profits of around $40 billion in 2022 amid soaring oil and gas prices.