If you want to know how to save a struggling industry, ask an expert. That’s just what the UK government did when it enlisted retired Scottish oil tycoon Sir Ian Wood to review its offshore oil and gas industry.
Wood recommended the establishment of a new regulator to oversee offshore oil and gas, which could enhance the British economy by £200 billion over two decades. He said the Department of Energy and Climate Change, which currently regulates the industry, is “significantly under resourced and far too thinly spread” to continue managing it and boost productivity in the future.
“The evidence is clear. We need to strengthen the capacity and capability of our stewardship regime to enhance collaboration significantly across the North Sea if we are to meet the challenging demands of maturity and diversity and maximise the economic benefits for both the country and the industry,” said Wood.
Wood made his recommendations after interviewing 40 active companies that make up 95% of the UK Continental Shelf. UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey says Wood’s report has given “government and industry alike plenty to think about.”