An industry and national challenge
In May 2019, the UK became the first major economy to pass a net zero law for greenhouse gas emissions, ending the nation’s contribution to global warming by 2050. Net zero means no emissions or those generated being balanced by offset schemes (from
planting trees to using carbon capture and storage or other technology).
The energy industry faces significant challenges with this ambitious move. It must meet a growing demand for power more cleanly and greenly than ever before. The Oil and Gas Authority asked LRQA to explore if upstream infrastructure across the UK
Continental Shelf (UKCS) could support the nation’s smooth ‘energy transition’ from a high- to low-carbon economy, while also transforming and benefitting the sector. This work was part of a cross-regulatory study commissioned by the UK Government to consider a broad range of lowcarbon initiatives.
How we helped
Our extensive, detailed technical assessment investigated numerous scenarios, focussing on three main themes:
- Cutting CO2 emissions of oil and gas operations with platform electrification.
- Reducing the environmental impact of the wider energy industry by using oil and gas
infrastructure with carbon capture and storage technology.
- Exploring how the oil and gas sector could be part of the move to renewable energy by introducing:
- Hydrogen production facilities
- North Sea power hubs, potentially including gas to wire opportunities for stranded hydrocarbon resources.
For each of the areas under these themes, we:
- Considered the technical feasibility of a range of low-carbon development build-out scenarios
- Scoped the costs of each scenario
- Assessed the potential for reusing existing oil and gas infrastructure to identify market opportunities and potential cost efficiencies.
Insights and conclusions
Although a preliminary study, our report highlights several ways forward for the oil and gas business in the UKCS.
Our work on behalf of the OGA – including future recommendations – will shape Phase 2 of the study. This next stage will address the economic and regulatory issues facing the sector.
The UK needs pragmatic, optimistic experts as it takes strides towards its net-zero emissions pledge. As a leading technical specialist, LRQA is committed to
supporting the energy industry with its low-carbon activities.
For more in-depth insights and conclusions from this study, please download the full PDF using the link below.
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