UK offshore production could extend beyond 2050, report claims

Investments in facilities across the UK North Sea could reach £268 billion ($378 billion) over the next three decades, according to industry analyst Professor Alex Kemp.

Offshore staff

ABERDEEN, UK – Investments in facilities across the UK North Sea could reach £268 billion ($378 billion) over the next three decades, according to industry analyst Professor Alex Kemp.

He is due to present his findings tomorrow at the Future of Energy conference at the University of Aberdeen.

Among the findings from his study - Prospects for Long-Term Activity Levels in the UKCS to 2050 - are that total field expenditures in the period to 2050 could be around £90 billion ($127 billion) at today’s prices.

Total operating expenditure could approach £124 billion ($175 billion), while total decommissioning expenditure could be around £54 billion ($76 billion).

“Employing investment screening prices of $60/barrel for oil and 50 pence per therm for gas (both of which are in real terms and thus increase with inflation each year) cumulative production in the period to 2050 could amount to nearly 11 Bboe,” he claimed.

While UK offshore production has been increasing since 2014, Professor Kemp predicts a peak will soon be reached.

There remains a large amount of unexploited potential - 5.6 Bboe in 183 fields across the UK sector, most of which contain less than 20 MMboe recoverable - but this will require a concerted effort from industry to realize, he added.

“At 2050 there will still be some modest production activity, and the geographic pattern of activity will change over the period, with oil production in thewest of Shetland region becoming increasingly important for both production and investment.”

03/27/2018

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