OGUK’s Economic Report 2019, which launches this week at Offshore Europe, will reinforce the importance of the UK’s oil and gas industry, a sector that is critical in meeting today’s energy needs and one that will be a key contributor to tomorrow’s energy mix.
We are an industry in action. While we continue to play a central role in providing the UK with a secure and affordable energy supply we are positioning ourselves for a successful future, reviewing energy policy within a changing political, economic and social environment.
As the leading representative body for this sector, OGUK is proud to champion the work of our members through cutting-edge insights, events and engagement with key stakeholders including the media and politicians.
But as the sector comes increasingly under the spotlight in the climate change debate, now is the time to turn up the volume and bring facts and evidence to a debate which too often produces more heat than light.
Our message is simple. The UK oil and gas industry can be a key part of the solution. We can provide the secure, affordable energy and industrial products that the UK needs alongside helping support energy transitions in other sectors with our skills, capabilities and infrastructure. We know that, across the world, energy demand continues to grow and by 2035 it will have risen by 30%. At the same time, we all need to lower the carbon emissions linked to how we live our lives.
As part of this report launch OGUK will unveil the evolution of Vision 2035. It will be in the form of a roadmap to 2035, which is also a blueprint for how our industry will help ensure operating on a net-zero emissions basis becomes reality. For the UK to reach net-zero by 2050, however, it will require more than the efforts by our industry to reduce our operational emissions – currently sitting at 3% of UK total emissions.
It will require significant societal and behavioural change in how we use our energy, what we buy and the choices we make every day.
None of this is breaking news to our industry. Many of our members have been working across other energy sectors, driving energy and operational efficiencies and piloting some of the most advanced low carbon technologies for years.
As an industry we recognise we have a responsibility to help people understand the changing energy mix. We must also do more to show the positive contribution we are making to the energy transition.
Later this month we will launch a consumer-facing campaign, “Know Your Energy”. It is designed to help people better understand where their energy comes from, the emissions resulting from their energy use and just how prevalent oil and gas is in our everyday lives.
It’s just one of the steps OGUK is taking to ensure the voice of industry is heard in an increasingly heated debate which could undermine achievement of the managed transition we need to ensure secure, affordable energy supply as well as realising our net zero ambitions.
Our industry certainly doesn’t have all of the answers, but equally certain is that we can be an important partner in developing the solutions that we need.
Providing the relevant facts and evidence across society will help us make better, more informed decisions together about where our energy comes from, how we use it and how to deal with any emissions that result. Then it is up to every industry and every individual in the country to play their part.
Gareth Wynn, stakeholder and communications director at OGUK