LONDON — Offshore Energies UK (OEUK) has responded to the Scottish government’s publication of its draft energy strategy. The recommendations are said to include a `presumption’ against new exploration for oil and gas in Scotland’s waters due to incompatibilities with the administration's climate goals.
Jenny Stanning, OEUK’s external relations director said, “Our industry has pledged to work with the Scottish government toward its target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2045. So we strongly support the draft strategy's commitment to develop a Scottish hydrogen economy, including the exciting ACORN project in the northeast.
“ACORN would be the core of both Scotland’s hydrogen production industry and the development of its CO2 capture and storage technologies. However, we are concerned at the statement's suggestion of accelerating the decline in oil and gas production.”
Stanning points out that Scotland derives 79% of its total energy from oil and gas, according to OEUK figures.
“Additionally, in Scotland alone, the offshore industry supports 90,000 jobs. Across the UK it's around 200,000," Stanning said. “So we need to ensure that the final strategy acknowledges the continuing role of oil and gas in Scotland’s energy security and economy as well as our sector's role in a rapid transition to a low-carbon future.”
According to Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper, in 2017 the Scottish National Party supported a position of “maximum economic recovery” of the UK North Sea’s remaining reserves, but that stance was abandoned after the party formed a coalition with the Scottish Greens.