Offshore Energies Magazine - Issue 55 Spring 2023

Message from our CEO

Security and the transition: OEUK briefs the minister

David Whitehouse CEO, Offshore Energies UK

Operators and contractors working on the UK continental shelf have shown exemplary resilience. Despite enormous economic challenges the UK faces, the sector continues to demonstrate that it is a responsible and trusted partner to the country’s economy. Delivering the energy transition does not come down to a simple choice between oil and gas on the one hand and renewables on the other: both are needed as society’s demand for energy shows little sign of abating. Our industry is proud to have provided the UK with a sustainable energy supply for the last 50 years and all political parties must be open about the major and long-term role oil and gas could play in the energy transition. In this time, the sector has also contributed almost £400bn in taxes and supported hundreds of thousands of jobs across the country. It could go on to provide much more. However, the Energy Profits Levy poses a serious risk. A predictable tax regime is key to ensuring UK energy security and the energy transition as our Business Outlook shows. The cast in our documentary film The Time is Now exemplify the new approach to ensure we decarbonise efficiently and diversify smoothly. The fruits of their endeavours save time, emissions and money while putting safety first. Critically, we need the same supply chain for both existing and new technologies and we are working to keep it healthy: once lost, it will be difficult to rebuild it. In this regard, Our Share Fair Conference in February highlighted best practice in contracting and how the sector can enable more collaborative behaviours. We hope we can count on your participation in our next Working as One survey. Our exploration and subsurface event in April offered those present new investment opportunities in a Dragon’s Den-style event. And as always, our forums and workgroups continue to add value, collaborating on technology, safety and the growing geopolitical threats. Thank you for reading this magazine and feel free to provide any feedback.

OEUK appoints new board members Alan Bruce from Ithaca replaced Jose Luis Muñoz from Repsol in January. Mr Bruce has 20 years of oil and gas experience. He joined Ithaca Energy in August 2021 as COO. In January 2022 he became CEO. OEUK CEO David Whitehouse (left) and DESNZ minister Graham Stuart (3rd from left) at Noble's facilities, Aberdeen. After, Mr Whitehouse said: "Our message is clear: the UK’s oil and gas sector is essential for energy security and working with government, it can deliver the net zero revolution here in the UK – less imported energy and a home-grown transition."

Offshore Energies UK appointed several new board members early this year. CEO David Whitehouse said the experience and knowledge of the new appointees would be a great asset as the sector strives to deliver energy security and the energy transition. He said: “A range of perspectives will be needed to deliver the sector’s climate goals whilst remaining a reliable energy partner to Europe – especially during these times of unprecedented energy costs and supply disruptions. We thank all the departing board members for their valued contribution and support.” Sarah Moore, who has worked with Peterson since 2009 and was appointed the company’s CEO in January 2022, brings considerable experience in energy logistics and internationalisation, alongside a strong commitment to carbon neutrality and the transition towards sustainable sources of energy production. She joined in February. The North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA)’s 33rd upstream round received 115 bids from 76 companies, following its October invitation to compete for offshore acreage. NSTA’s exploration head Nick Robertson said the response "exceeded application levels compared with previous rounds. We will now be working hard to analyse the applications with a view to awarding the first licences from Q2 2023."

Nicolas Payer from TotalEnergies succeeds Jean-Luc Guiziou, who is stepping down as a result of his move to a new role in Paris. Mr Payer has been with TotalEnergies since 1992. Neil McCulloch, CEOof Spirit Energy, has taken on the Operator Chair role from Equinor's Arne Gurtner; and Doris Reiter of BP has filled Mr McCulloch’s previous role as vice chair. Scott McGinigal will be replaced by CNOOC's Jianq Qing. Meanwhile, four other members have now stepped down from the board: Andy Hessell, of Kellas Midstream; Mikki Corcoran, of SLB; Kenny Dey, of Archer; and Russell Alton, of New European Offshore. We thank those leaving the board for their service. Included in the acreage are four priority areas, which have known oil and gas and or are near export infrastructure and therefore could be brought on stream in less than two years. There are several necessary consents after licensing and before production to ensure these developments are compliant with the 2015 Paris Agreement. That committed the UK and the many other signatories to become carbon neutral by 2050.

NSTA pleased with E&P round interest

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