The Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) has confirmed that it is the latest industry looking to bring green energy into its operation. By doing so, it will integrate the offshore power sector and look at ways to develop closer links between offshore renewables and fossil fuel production.
The OGA has been awarded a grant of £900,000 to kick-start the project. It will identify the optimum combination of storage solutions for varied energy sources as part of the move towards a low-carbon economy.
Potential focal products could include power solutions for gas platforms and offshore oil rigs with the introduction of green power source and offshore production of hydrogen and transport/storage of H2O using existing infrastructure.
The OGA’s Chief Executive, Dr Andy Samuel, said that the funding would offer a great chance to take the green energy agenda forward, offering ways for regulators to support this transition and to help create opportunities for the UK's oil industry.
He added that fossil fuels would still be needed in the economy for the immediate future but that excellent opportunities existed to link up offshore energy types to generate more efficient and cleaner power wherever possible.
A range of short-term clean and integrated energy options will be progressed with a number of stakeholders that include the BEIS, Ofgem and The Crown Estate. Energy integration projects are also expected to help maximise the remaining value of Britain's Continental Shelf.
The project will kick off next spring, and the expectation is that it will be able to leverage the existing wealth of skills, technology and infrastructure that already exists in the UK's offshore industries, helping to create new lines of work for industries which will become increasingly decommissioned in the future years as the switch to renewable energy continues.