Appeal for support
UK ‘must avoid losing another industry jewel’
The giant Hutton tension leg platform in the North Sea has been towed five miles across the Cromarty Firth to Queen’s Dock in Invergordon where it will be recycled
Britain must not lose another ‘jewel in the crown’ of industry as the oil and gas sector switches to cleaner energy, according to Deirdre Michie, chief executive of industry body OGUK.
Ms Michie told its annual conference that with the right support, the UK could become the “Silicon Valley of energy” as the global leader in the critical areas of the future, such as emissions reduction and low carbon technologies.
But she also appealed to government not to follow the pattern of the shipbuilding, textiles, steel and mining industries which were lost while demand continued.
Arguing the case for continued support she said the North Sea Transition Deal – the first of its kind by a G7 country – “will spark an acceleration in low-carbon activities, delivered right here on our doorstep in the UK.”
Ms Michie said: “This conference comes at a historic moment for our industry, just two months after we signed the landmark North Sea Transition Deal with the UK Government.
“It’s an ambitious deal that will accelerate a bold path to harness our sector’s five decades of energy expertise and help generate cleaner energy for millions of people here in the UK.
“And with the right support, the UK could become the Silicon Valley of energy, leading the way on emissions reduction, clean energy and low carbon technologies.”
But she added: “Our sector is still a jewel in the crown and an industrial success story for the UK. There have been many other jewels – shipbuilding, textiles, steel and mining to name just a few.
“What all of these have in common is that they were all lost while the demand for their products continued. With dire consequences – let’s not sugar coat it – on people and jobs, communities and businesses that were left behind and opportunities to transform being lost.”