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UK Gas Output Stagnation Threatens Supply


The UK’s natural gas industry is struggling to boost production, and this will likely make the country more reliant on imports, industry association Offshore Energies UK said this week, as quoted by Bloomberg.

Without fresh investment in new gas production, the body, formerly known as Oil and Gas UK, by 2030, the country would rely on imports for between 70 and 80 percent of its gas consumption.

The body warned that this year’s gas production in the UK would be little changed from last year, while demand was set to grow more markedly. Meanwhile, Norway became the largest supplier of gas to the UK last year. 

According to Offshore Energies UK, the Scandinavian country is a reliable supplier, but the UK is not its only client, suggesting it might need alternative supplies because Norway is already stretched as it is, thanks to the surge in demand and the slump in supply that has been plagued Europe since last year.

The body also warned that total oil and gas production in the UK was seen declining by as much as 15 percent every year without “rapid” new investment in new energy infrastructure.

“This decline is much faster than the predicted reduction in U.K. energy demand so, if there is no such investment then, by 2030, we will be reliant on other countries for at least 80% of our gas and 70% of our oil,” OEUK said. 

Earlier this week, the OEUK published what it dubbed a comprehensive plan that protects UK energy security without compromising on climate goals. In it, the body said domestic production could supply some 40 percent of the gas the country consumes and the equivalent of more than 65 percent of oil consumption over the next two years.

At the same time, the industry body prioritized the transition away from fossil fuels, which has already seriously undermined investments in new oil and gas production, according to OEUK itself.