First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has vowed to provide more details about the Scottish Government’s new decommissioning fund “in due course”.
Ms Sturgeon announced the £5million Decommissioning Challenge Fund (DCF) today during a visit to Aberdeen companies Sparrows Group and Zilift.
The money is expected to be used to improve capacity at Scottish ports and support infrastructure upgrades and innovation in salvage and transport methods.
Asked how the cash would be distributed, Ms Sturgeon said: “We will set out more detail in terms of the rules around the fund and how that will operate in due course.
“But it will be open to ports and companies, consortiums of different ports and companies, to come forward with their proposals in terms of how they see infrastructure development or innovation perhaps around salvage or transport.”
Ms Sturgeon confirmed the government intended to make additional funds available once business cases had been developed to support larger scale projects.
She said: “In terms of future funds obviously we will be informed by the proposals that come forward for the utilisation of this fund but it’s very much envisaged as almost a seed fund, an initial fund that will lead to greater investment in the years ahead.
“The £17billion potential benefit from decommissioning, two-thirds of that will come after 2020 so we’ve got a really important window of opportunity now to make sure the infrastructure and the skills and the capability in Scotland is here to get maximum benefit from all of that.”
Oil and Gas UK’s 2016 Decommissioning Insight report forecasts £17.6billion of spending on the sector between 2016 and 2025.
Onshore recycling and disposal is only expected to account for 1.2% of that figure.
Well plugging and abandonment is estimated to require the most significant spend, accounting for 47% of the total.