Oil and Gas UK (OGUK), which represents the UK oil and gas industry, has presented its plans for decarbonising the sector in response to the net-zero emission goals set by the UK and Scottish governments.
Deirdre Michie OBE, the chief executive of OGUK, presented Roadmap 2035: an industrial response to the UK and Scottish Governments’ net-zero commitments at a keynote speech in Edinburgh. She said the roadmap’s goal is to achieve an oil and gas industry that is competitive but also safe and sustainable, so it can help meet the UK’s energy requirements as it moves towards net-zero status.
Michie said the OGUK would support other heavy emissions sectors with its technologies, skills, and infrastructure to help them also reach net-zero. She then said:
“In terms of our own production emissions, we will be a net-zero oil and gas basin by 2050, reducing emissions from 14 million tonnes (mt) – currently 3% of the UK’s total greenhouse gas emissions – to 0.5mt, in line with the Climate Change Committee outlook.”
She did add, however, that this would entail a sizeable investment and close collaboration with the renewable energy industry in Scotland and the wider UK.
While the UK North Sea oil industry is generally regarded to be in decline, many operators—such as BP, the oil company behind Castrol lubricant products—intend to be there for decades to come. Michie argued in her speech that shutting down the domestic oil and gas industry prematurely would not affect energy consumption, because imported fuels would fill the gap.