Scottish and rUK Energy Ministers welcome major new N. Sea oil discovery

oil rigEnergy Ministers at both Holyrood and Westminster both rushed to welcome confirmation of the discovery of the major new BP oil field in the North Sea.

Westminster Business and Energy Minister Matthew Hancock, said: “We are determined to have set the right fiscal and regulatory regimes to make sure we can get the maximum possible economic extraction of oil and gas from the North Sea.”

“This discovery shows exactly what can be achieved in the North Sea if companies work together to maximise the considerable potential of remaining oil and gas reserves.”

Scottish Energy Minister Fergus Ewing said: “This discovery is another great example of the huge potential the future holds for the North Sea.

“With more effective collaboration, increased exploration activity and a commitment to maximising economic recovery, the overall value that the industry continues to generate for the wider economy can also be maximised.

 “It is critical that current reforms to the regulatory and fiscal regimes applying in the North Sea are expedited and prioritised with a view to ensuring the economic viability of projects such as these, and to realising the opportunities for development of the vast remaining resources in the North Sea.”

Professor Mehran Sohrabi, Director of Heriot-Watt University’s centre for enhanced oil recovery, said new technologies could be a ‘game changer’ for North Sea oil industry.

Professor Mehran Sohrabi, Heriot Watt University
Professor Mehran Sohrabi, Heriot Watt University

See also: ‘Industry must invest in new technologies to unlock even more N. Sea oil reserves’ –

By Professor Mehran Sohrabi

Director of the Centre for Enhanced Oil Recovery

Institute of Petroleum Engineering 

Heriot-Watt University

Julian Farrar, of environmental consultants Ironside Farrar, said he suspected the industry “will still be a significant contributor to the Shetland economy throughout the whole of this century”.

And Maureen Watt, SNP MSP (Aberdeen South), said: “This latest discovery highlights the ongoing great success of the oil and gas sector and underlines – as we have consistently said – that the North Sea has a bright future ahead of it.

“New technology that has the potential to extend the lifespan of oil and gas fields is proving hugely significant for jobs and Scotland’s economy and I am sure there will be more good news to come regarding viability of existing oil fields and more yet to be discovered fields.

“With the right support the oil and gas sector can go from strength to strength and reap the full benefit of new developments such as this – but for that to happen there can be no return to the shock tax raids and uncertainty we have seen in recent years from the Westminster Government.”

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