North Sea still needs oil, gas investment says Shell

The UK needs to keep developing new oil and gas fields in the North Sea even as it develops major offshore wind and carbon capture and storage projects, Shell’s UK head of upstream Simon Roddy told Bloomberg in an interview.

“The UK will still need its home-produced oil and gas, which would otherwise only be replaced by likely higher-emissions imports,” Roddy said in the Bloomberg interview.

“There was only one major development consent for the whole of the North Sea last year.

“I don’t fundamentally think that’s a sustainable position …

“Production decline versus the previous year was almost 15%.

“Clearly if that kind of trajectory continues, the North Sea continental shelf is going to decline rather quickly.”

He added: “We are certainly looking at other opportunities, particularly gas and around our infrastructure.

“It’s not our expectation to be the only operator with a major approved consent in the funnel.”

UK regulators recently approved Shell’s revised plan to develop the giant Jackdaw gas field 250 kilometres east of Aberdeen as the Westminster government seeks to boost domestic energy output following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Jackdaw project, which will connect to existing infrastructure at the Shearwater offshore hub, is the only major development to be have been given the go ahead this year.

Last week, Norway’s Equinor submitted plans to UK regulators for the development of Rosebank, a major oilfield west of Shetland which would start production in late 2026.

Equinor and Canada’s Suncor Energy each have a 40% interest in the Rosebank project, while Aberdeen-based Ithaca Energy has the remaining 20%.

Ithaca Energy has yet to submit an environmental statement for the proposed Cambo field.