North Sea Industry Praises Scottish Climate Plan
Oil and Gas UK (OGUK) has praised Scotland's updated climate change plan for recognising the role that the North Sea industry can play in the energy transition.
Scottish lawmakers passed a bill last year that set as binding goals a 75% cut in emissions by 2030 compared with the level in 1990 and net-zero emissions by 2045. The government has now set out details for how these targets will be reached. The plan includes the launch of a £180mn ($245mn) emerging energy technologies fund for developing hydrogen, carbon capture and storage (CCS) and negative emissions technologies, among other initiatives.
Scotland's biggest CCS and hydrogen project is Acorn, being developed by Pale Blue Dot Energy. The project is due to start producing hydrogen from North Sea gas arriving at the St Fergus terminal in 2024, while storing CO2 from the process in depleted offshore reservoirs.
"The Scottish governments' climate change plan recognises the critical role of the country's changing oil and gas industry in accelerating moves towards a low carbon future," OGUK CEO Deirdre Michie said.
The association is waiting for the government's revised energy strategy in 2021. "However, given the significance of our industry to Scottish jobs and the economy, as well as the triple threat of Covid-19 we've faced this year, we must continue to work at pace with the Scottish government to ensure that our supply chain is supported throughout the Just Transition," Michie said.
Michie said OGUK was working with the government to secure a North Sea transition deal in the first half of 2021, to help the industry through the downturn and move from oil and gas and into renewables and other new technologies.
Scotland's plan also includes £120mn in funding to develop zero-emission buses, £50mn to create sustainable transport links between Scottish towns and cities and a further £50mn to transform vacant and derelict land. The government also wants to reduce the number of kilometres travelled by cars by 20% by 2030 while also phasing out new gasoline and diesel-powered cars and vans by that point.