Photo of Neil Rowley - used for the National Grid story 'Neil Rowley: greening up gas'

Neil Rowley: greening up gas

Neil Rowley, 40, studied Sports Science for his degree, so it’s fair to say that joining the energy sector wasn’t his original game plan. 17 years into his career at National Grid, he’s got no regrets. His current role, as Gas Markets Development Manager, involves addressing how we can green up gas and is one of his most rewarding yet.

From sports field to levelling the energy playing field

I joined National Grid with a degree in sports science. Much of my work has been about ensuring we have clear and fair rules and procedures for how companies supply us, and the financial settlement they get in return. So, while I left sports behind, you could say that I’ve made a career out of creating level playing fields for the energy industry.

Not just for engineers

My background wasn’t a direct match, but the company felt I was a good hire and supported me to gain the knowledge I needed with a modular-based, two-year HND course in engineering.

There are many opportunities at National Grid for people like me with a non-engineering background … you’ll get the support you need to retrain and develop your skills.

There are many opportunities at National Grid for people like me with a non-engineering background, including customer management, data specialists and people with strong commercial experience. You’ll get the support you need to retrain and develop your skills.

A sustainable career

I joined more than 17 years ago. I’ve been able to build a great career, first working in renewable wind energy, helping new companies get the approvals they needed to start supplying the grid. I’ve also worked on developing rules for electricity market participants, together with developing and contracting services to help balance the electricity system.

Looking at low-carbon gases

Now I’m leading a project to explore and prepare the gas market ahead of our shift into low-carbon gases. As we are seeing with electricity, gas will undergo significant changes in the coming years; as we change the way gas is supplied and used to meet our decarbonisation obligations. It’s essential we create a fair market, while making sure end users get good value.