UK Prime Minister David Cameron and his Norwegian counterpart Jens Stoltenberg yesterday signed a ‘landmark’ energy partnership to secure affordable, long-term supplies.
The Norway-UK Energy Partnership for Sustainable Growth outlines closer working ties on oil and gas extraction, gas supply, electricity interconnection, climate change policy and renewables.
As well as the partnership, the two premiers announced new investment by UK and Norwegian companies worth billions of pounds, which could crete thousands of new jobs.
Those investments include a £12 billion investment by Statoil in the UK’s Mariner-Bressay North Sea oil fields, a new agreement between Statoil and Centrica on gas supply and exploration and a deal between Shell and Gassco to secure more gas from Norway.
While critics says the agreement ties the UK even more tightly to a gas dependent future, Statoil and Statkraft did confirm their intentions to develop the 9 GW Dogger Bank offshore wind site as part of the Forewind Consortium.
The project off the east coast of Yorkshire will require up to £30 billion in investment but could provide over 10% of the UK’s electricity needs.
And the UK and Norway are making progress on a subsea electricity interconnector that will allow the two nations to share renewable energy resources.
“The jobs and investments announced today highlight how vital the strong relationship between Norway and the UK is for our energy security and economic growth,” said Cameron in a statement.
Norway already supplies some 42% of the UK’s imported gas and 62% of imported oil in 2011, adding up to over a quarter of the country’s primary energy demands.
For further information:
IEA sets out rules for ‘golden age of gas’ (31-May)
UK Environment Agency gives OK to fracking ‘if safe’ (9-May)
UK government calls for input into gas generation strategy (3-May)
UK and Norway sign energy pact as MPs call for new strategy on security (27-Oct 2011)
08 June 2012