Commenting on the OGA’s announcement of the award offers in the 32nd Licensing Round

Katy Heidenreich, OGUK’s supply chain and operations director said:

“At a time when companies face huge pressures it is encouraging that our basin continues to demonstrate its attractiveness to a wide range of companies. This is a crucial element in unlocking the new investment that will help continue to meet UK energy needs and sustain jobs across our sector.
As a net importer of oil and gas it is critical that the UK continues to explore for and develop new resources in terms of energy security. Achieving this means we can continue to anchor our world-class expertise in the UK as our sector positions itself to play a key role in the transition to a lower carbon future as outlined in industry’s Roadmap 2035.”

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Findings from the first survey of digitalisation in the oil and gas industry reveal there’s a strong appetite to ensure technology is matured to improve the sector’s connectivity, efficiency and sustainability but highlight the need to promote collaborative working if these transformational changes are to become a reality.

With support from Deloitte, the UKCS Data and Digital Maturity Survey was launched in June 2020 by OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry, in partnership with the Technology Leadership Board (TLB), the Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC), and Opportunity North East (ONE) to assess the maturity of digitalisation across the sector.

Compiled with input from a cross section of more than 70 organisations and almost 40 individuals, full details of the report will be shared at a free webinar chaired by Dr Dan Brown, Executive Director of OGUK subsidiary Common Data Access (CDA) together with CDA Delivery Manager Sakthi Norton on 1 September. Key speakers at the event will include:
• Mikki Corcoran, Co-Chair TLB
• Alex Macdonald, Digital Transformation Project Manager, OGTC
• Jared Owen, Director of Digital and Entrepreneurship, Opportunity North East (ONE)

Following the presentations, John Seabourn, Chief Digital Officer, OGA and Guri Neote Director of Deloitte Consulting’s Digital Capital Projects team will join the speakers in an interactive panel session.

Deirdre Michie, OBE OGUK Chief Executive, said:
“This timely report provides industry with an invaluable baseline for developing the strategies we need to realise the huge potential for digitalisation, enabling our industry to become more connected, efficient and sustainable in the process. Digitalisation is as much about culture as technology and the report highlights the importance of businesses working together to share ideas, challenge themselves and combine expertise to deliver the transformational change we need to spur our sector’s recovery and support an accelerated transition to net zero.”

Sir Ian Wood, KT GBE, Chair ONE, said,
“The report provides critical insight at a time when businesses of all sizes are having to adapt to major market and customer changes. While the industry is strong in the technical aspects of digital, it lacks the innovation mindset and culture to be decisive in digital transformation in relation to its peers. It is encouraging to see a strong desire for collaboration but it’s still not strong enough and we need to pick up the pace in this area if we are to fast-track progress. It’s imperative that we use the findings to collectively tailor action and catalyse a more digitally focused industry.”

Colette Cohen OBE, CEO of the Oil & Gas Technology Centre said:
“Digitalisation provides opportunities for increased efficiency, reduced carbon footprint and improved safety, which are crucial in the transition to a net zero future. This report shows that industry collaboration is the enabler, with the true potential of data being unlocked through a shared approach to industry challenges.”

Mikki Corcoran, Co-Chair TLB, Schlumberger, said
“Genuine digital transformation is fundamental to remaining a strategic energy supplier to the U.K. in a net zero world. Today we have the technology we need; leadership and vision are required to make this a reality on the UKCS.”

Graham Hollis, Office Senior Partner for Deloitte in Aberdeen added: “This report provides timely insight into the topics that matter most to businesses of all sizes operating across the UK’s oil and gas sector. It is promising to see the progress industry has made to date in its digital journey, however it is clear there remains many challenges that need to be overcome for industry to truly maximise the opportunity provided by digitalisation.”

The detailed survey report and summary slides can be found at the OGUK website

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The leading representative body for the UK oil and gas industry, OGUK, has appointed three major business leaders to its board as the sector sharpens its focus on recovery.

 

As UK Managing Director of gas-focused exploration and production company, Neptune Energy, Alexandra Thomas represents one of the leading independents investing in the UK North Sea. With international expertise in exploration and development, Alexandra brings 18 years’ oil and gas experience to OGUK’s board. She started her career on assignments with Shell and Equinor later working in senior leadership roles in the UK, Netherlands, Norway and Ghana, where she was Tullow Oil’s Head of Exploration, Development and Commercial before joining Neptune in 2020. An ardent promoter of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, Alexandra champions for women in engineering and technical roles and mentors a number of men and women in their career development.

 

 

 

 

BP’s Senior Vice President for the North Sea Emeka Emembolu has significant knowowledge of the company having joined the business in 1998. Since starting his career as a production engineer on bp’s ETAP development in the central North Sea, Emeka has worked in diverse technical and leadership roles in regions across the globe including the UK, Angola, Algeria, Egypt, Alaska and latterly Texas where he was Vice President, Reservoir Development for the Gulf of Mexico & Canada. Emeka is passionate about promoting STEM subjects and highlighting the potential for technology to deliver solutions to industry’s challenges.

 

 

 

 

 

As Regional Director for CHC Helicopter’s European, Middle East and African business, Mark Abbey has a wealth of aerospace and aviation experience built up over 35 years in the industry. Mark’s career has encompassed senior management positions in Europe, the USA, India and China. Earlier in his career, Mark spent 16 years at BAE Systems in an executive role managing their aircraft systems and operational facilities for assets including the Hawk Jet Trainer.

 

 

 

Deirdre Michie, OGUK’s chief executive, commented:

“The diverse experience and knowledge that Emeka, Mark and Alexandra bring to the OGUK Board will be a great asset as our industry tackles a challenging landscape of low commodity prices and the coronavirus pandemic, while at the same time seeking to support the UK’s cleaner climate ambitions.

“This diversity of perspectives from across industry is critical as we work to deliver Roadmap 2035, finding solutions for low carbon oil and gas production while doing everything we can to revive our world-class but fragile supply chain and protect the skills of our people for the future.“

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Katy HeidenreichThe leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry is driving its supply chain agenda forward by appointing Katy Heidenreich, director responsible for leading its supply chain and operations activities.

Currently spearheading OGUK’s Recovery Group’s work with industry, Government and regulators to stimulate investment in the basin, Katy will focus on supply chain activities while progressing initiatives aimed at increasing UKCS activity to sustain jobs across the sector’s beleaguered supply chain.

In her new role, Katy will build on the significant progress achieved by Matt Abraham, who leaves the representative body to take up a leadership role in a major contractor company after two and a half years as OGUK’s supply chain and exports director.

Katy’s extensive supply chain experience includes 27 years in the oil and gas industry working in technical and senior management roles in the UK, Norway and Azerbaijan. She joined OGUK in 2015 after 15 years with Schlumberger Oilfield services, latterly as Commercial Manager for UK, Holland and Denmark. Katy is also the author of ‘The industry’s best kept secret’- a book designed to inspire and encourage more women to consider careers in the energy sector.

OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie commented:
“Our industry has the essential expertise to help the UK meet its climate ambitions by 2050 and power the green recovery. At the same time, we can help keep costs low for households and families, retain jobs and create new roles for the future.

“Supporting a sustainable recovery is at the heart of all this, and Katy will have a critical role in bringing the supply chain together with our operations to support much needed recovery, at pace. Katy’s expertise in optimising operations to help unlock investment will help stimulate much needed activity for our world-class but fragile supply chain.

“I’m also grateful to Matt for his contribution to OGUK and industry during some of our most challenging times and wish him every success for the future.”

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OGUK’s drive to ensure the UK oil and gas sector is taking collective action to stimulate its own recovery comes under focus in a free webinar featuring leading industry figures on Thursday 27 August.

Since April 2020, members of OGUK’s Recovery Group have been working across the industry to help shape the sector’s recovery as it looks beyond the issues posed by the coronavirus, tackles the challenge of sustained low commodity prices and takes steps to support the energy transition.

Chair of the webinar, Katy Heidenreich, OGUK’s Operations Director commented:
“OGUK is spearheading and supporting a number of self-help initiatives aimed at helping our industry recover from the triple threat of COVID-19, the dramatic crash in oil price and the lowest gas prices for 14 years. Working closely with government and regulators, we’re focusing on areas throughout the oil and gas lifecycle from exploration to decommissioning where we can boost competitiveness, unlock planned work programmes and stimulate activity for our world-class but fragile supply chain. Supporting recovery now is key to the industry realising its full potential through the energy transition and this webinar is an ideal chance to hear about progress achieved to date and proposals aimed at unlocking investment.”

Keynote speakers include Neil McCulloch, Executive VP, Technical & Operated Assets, Spirit Energy who will highlight the importance of strengthening the UK oil and gas sector now to attract new investment, retain the skills to recover activity and support the energy transition towards a low carbon economy.

Scott Robertson, Director of Operations at the OGA will cover a range for topics from the regulator’s perspective, including the significant prize remaining on the UKCS, and what the OGA has been doing to stimulate recovery. He will also provide an update on the new OGA Strategy which will incorporate net zero considerations, and outline what the OGA expects from industry and what industry can expect from the OGA going forward.

Members of OGUK’s recovery group will share examples of ongoing initiatives, with Gavin Rogers, Director of Innovation, Digital & Technology at Wood, discussing a collaboration between members to support a data-driven methodology that can optimise resource utilisation within the UKCS.

In a separate case study, Martin White Vice President, Halliburton and a member of the OGA/ Industry Wells Task Force will demonstrate the benefits of adopting a multi-operator campaign approach when executing well operations.

The webinar at 10 am on Thursday August 27 will include a panel session and places can be booked online https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/road-to-recovery-uk-oil-and-gas-industry-action-tickets-114507679552

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The leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas sector has partnered with Skills Development Scotland to signpost support for oil and gas workers impacted by redundancy.

The free webinar is open to anyone looking for support and advice on roles within the energy sector and will signpost attendees towards practical support and opportunities.

Earlier this year OGUK warned up to 30,000 jobs could be lost as the sector faces both the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on its operations and the sustained low oil and gas prices. Up to 9000 redundancies are reported to have been made so far, with the industry engaged in discussions with the UK government on a sector deal which could enable the sector to support the UK’s moves towards net zero by 2050.

OGUK today said that the webinar was one of a range of proactive measures the industry is taking to shape its future and support a recovery which also helps the sector play a full role in the energy transition.

Commenting, OGUK’s Workforce Engagement and Skills Manager Dr Alix Thom said:

“Our free webinar is open to anyone impacted by redundancy and will offer practical support as well as highlighting relevant opportunities in the wider energy industry.

“These are challenging times for all industries, and we are seeing the impact of this on people’s jobs and livelihoods nearly every day in the news. Though we are conscious that we will need their skills in the future as the sector recovers and embraces its role in the energy transition, we also recognise the human cost of the last four months and the need to try and help those who have applied their considerable skills on the industry’s behalf.

“Whilst our sector is remarkably resilient with remarkably resilient people, the challenges of both the pandemic and sustained low commodity prices put even further pressure on an industry that was only just beginning to emerge from the downturn.

“We continue to work with the UK government on developing a sector deal, and will also be putting more detailed support measures forward to both governments to help ensure that our industry can realise its full potential through the transition to a lower carbon future.”

  1. The free employment support and advice session will take place at 10am, Tuesday August 18. It is open to all and registration can be found here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/employment-support-and-advice-session-tickets-115881768489

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Major contractor Petrofac will be sharing its future project and activity plans with companies seeking new business opportunities at OGUK’s free Share Fair Spotlight webinar on August 4.

Part of a series of online business development events, the webinar enables attendees to engage with potential clients, gain insight of future contracts and quiz Petrofac’s experts in an online panel session.

Commenting, OGUK’s Supply Chain Director, Matt Abraham said:

“Many parts of the UK supply chain are under severe pressure as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and volatile commodity prices so these digital Share Fairs aim to promote stronger interaction between operators, contractors and suppliers at all scales of operation. They’re a great way for clients to meet existing companies as well as increase their market awareness of other companies with value-adding services and goods.”

Participants who register for the hour-long event will hear Roy Choudhury, Supply Chain Director, Cheryl McRae, Subcontract Team Lead and Daniel Gear, Strategic Programme Lead outlining Petrofac’s forward work programme for the UK North Sea as well as plans for decommissioning, lump-sum contracting and its plans to support the energy transition, including updates on ongoing projects. Attendees will be among the first to hear about the launch of Petrofac’s new Supplier Hub which aims to improve supply chain interaction and streamline processes.

To register for the event which takes place 11am-noon on Tuesday 4 August, visit OGUK’s webinar booking site at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/share-fair-spotlight-petrofac-tickets-111305142678.

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One of the offshore oil and gas industry’s most significant business development events is going digital in July when OGUK launches the first of its series of Share Fair Spotlight webinars featuring the forward work plans of Spirit Energy next week.

Matt Abraham, OGUK’s supply chain director said:
“Transforming Share Fair from a one-day event into a series of free webinars throughout the year will provide our much-beleaguered supply chain with regular access to timely information, early engagement with potential clients and insight of forthcoming contracts on offer. They’re focused on driving stronger engagement between operators, contractors and the wider supply chain, highlighting how businesses can connect with key people in each organisation and gain access to a panel of experts at each event.”

Spirit Energy’s plans for 2020-21 including details relating to capital projects, decommissioning, production and operations, will feature in the first Share Fair Spotlight webinar on July 1 with input from the following speakers:

• Neil McCulloch – Executive Vice-President, Technical & Operated Production
• Mark Fotheringham – Director, Capital Projects & Decommissioning
• John Cowie – Morecambe Hub Asset Manager
• Al Currie – SNS Asset Manager
• Nick Gorton – Director, Procurement & Supply Chain

Nick Gorton, Procurement & Supply Chain Director at Spirit Energy, said: “OGUK’s Share Fair has always been an important event for Spirit Energy. It’s a great opportunity for us to connect with our supply chain partners and share our plans.
“Those connections are now more important than ever, so we’re delighted that Share Fair will continue virtually this year and we’re looking forward to meeting both new and existing suppliers to see how we might work together on future opportunities.”

Matt Abraham adds: “Over the next few months, our series of Share Fair Spotlight webinars will include BP, Equinor, Perenco, Petrofac, Total and Worley. Stronger engagement between operators, contractors and the wider supply chain is vital to source the value-adding solutions that push the boundaries of innovation, technology and efficiency our supply chain needs to recover and play its role in delivering a low carbon economy.

The first Share Fair Spotlight takes place on July 1 10.30-11.30am and more information is available at https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/4102189230490841359.

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The UK’s offshore oil and gas industry has today (Tuesday 16) committed to halving operational emissions in the next decade, confirming its pathway to becoming a net zero emissions basin by 2050. The sector is one of the first in the UK to commit to industry-wide targets and provide details on how they will be achieved.

A report published by industry body OGUK, The Pathway to Net Zero: Production Emissions Targets, outlines how targets will be achieved through changes to operations, progressive reductions in flaring and venting, and major capital investment programmes aimed at using electricity rather than gas, to power offshore facilities.

The targets are a key part of a transformational sector deal that industry is now formally discussing with the UK Government. With jobs, the supply chain and energy communities at its core, the sector deal will consider how the UK’s oil and gas industry can support a green recovery.

This could see the sector support wider UK efforts to decarbonise, using its skills and infrastructure to develop critical carbon-cutting solutions such as industrial scale Carbon Capture Usage and Storage, and the use of hydrogen for heating and heavy transport.

OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie OBE said:

“The coronavirus pandemic and low oil and gas prices have had a devastating impact on the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry. Given the limited impact that the severity of the lockdown has had on global emissions, it is clearer than ever that we need a fair, inclusive, and sustainable transition towards climate targets. We need a green recovery which supports jobs, supply chain companies and energy communities.

“We remain committed to addressing the challenge of climate change, as we outlined in our Roadmap 2035 published last year. Our industry will play its part by reducing its emissions and using its skills to develop the solutions that will be needed to make a significant contribution to the UK’s overall targets.

“A transformational sector deal could help unlock the full potential of this industry to support a green recovery and we’re delighted to confirm that we are now in formal discussions about it. With a clear pathway to becoming a net zero basin by 2050 and with support from governments and regulators, we can protect domestic energy supplies, jobs and communities whilst embracing the opportunities which will come from being at the forefront of delivering a low carbon economy.”

UK Government Minister for Energy Kwasi Kwarteng said:“The offshore oil and gas sector’s commitment to halving operational emissions over the next decade is a welcome step for an industry that has a vital role to play in our energy transition in the years to come. The UK Government will continue to work tirelessly with all partners to deliver a dynamic Sector Deal. This will further support the industry in becoming more sustainable, as we work towards achieving net zero emissions by 2050.”

Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Government Minister for Energy, Connectivity and the islands said:

“I welcome this report from the UK oil and gas industry and the ambitious targets committing it to halving operational emissions over the next decade.This is not only an important commitment from one of Scotland’s key sectors, but a significant step to support Scotland’s just transition to net-zero which helps us move at pace.This report is timely as it follows the Scottish Government’s announcement on Friday 12 June of £62 million to support our energy transition.”

Report author and OGUK Emissions Improvement Manager Louise O’Hara Murray added:

“These targets would remove over 9 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gas emissions from our operations over the next decade; the same as taking nearly two million cars off the road for a year. Each year we will publicly show progress against our commitments on a sector-wide basis.

“They have been developed with industry following a detailed assessment of the measures needed to deliver them. They consider changes to operations, progressive reductions in flaring and venting and major capital investment programmes to decarbonise production operations.

“Many of the major capital investment projects which will help our sector to decarbonise, including the powering of assets with electricity instead of hydrocarbons, the development and deployment of carbon capture and storage (CCS) and hydrogen both on and offshore, will need to be developed at scale to help other industries accelerate their own efforts to reduce emissions.”

Case studies 

Name: Suzie Ferguson

Age: 40

Job title: Carbon capture technical lead

Company: Wood

Location: Reading

As carbon capture technical lead in Wood’s Technical Consulting Solutions business, Suzie works on techno-economic assessments of emerging CCS technologies and the design of carbon capture plants for thermal power plants and industrial emitters in oil refining, hydrogen and petrochemicals.

Suzie comments: “As a student in chemical engineering at the University of Surrey, the vision of a more sustainable world inspired me to tackle the most defining challenge of our era – climate change – as part of my future career.

“With increasingly urgent demand to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the landscape of the energy industry is rapidly changing and seeking practical ways to decarbonise our existing assets and unlock the potential of renewable energy have become key drivers.”

As more countries set ambitious net-zero carbon emissions targets, energy intensive industries are facing the unprecedented challenge of meeting rising energy demands while minimising the carbon footprint of operations and shifting to low-carbon power generation.

She continues: “Wood is already supporting new and existing energy customers with major projects to dramatically cut emissions and improve the efficiency of their assets by delivering advanced and integrated carbon capture and storage solutions.

“CCS can safely contain more than 90% of the carbon dioxide emissions produced from the use of fossil fuels in power plants and from industrial processes such as steel and cement manufacture. This technology can even be used to capture carbon from the air, from the combustion of biomass or waste, and store it safely underground as a real time carbon offsetting.

“As a solution, CCS not only prevents emissions entering the atmosphere but could provide a shift change in the UK’s energy economy.”

Name: Euan Bathgate

Age: 39
Job title:
VP, Engineering Support
Company:
Opex Group
Location: Inverurie, Aberdeenshire

Inverurie resident and oil and gas worker Euan Bathgate has driven the development of a new solution which helps oil and gas companies reduce CO2 intensity and emissions across their operations. Euan, a VP for OPEX Group in Aberdeen, led the development of X-PAS Emissions which uses predictive technologies combined with traditional engineering to improve energy efficiency on offshore installations.

Euan explains, “The new solution provides an opportunity for operators to reduce CO2 by dynamically calculating the lowest possible emissions for a given production target and plant configuration. Users of the system have full visibility of the energy use and emissions intensity of their assets and are prompted with the operational decisions and actions they can take to reduce emissions”.

The former offshore worker says a lot has changed during his time in industry, but there will still be a role for oil and gas as part of a diverse energy mix. This underlines the importance of producing oil and gas with as little emissions as possible; “What we’re doing makes our customers’ existing data valuable and we see this solution as an important part of mix because it can make an impact on emissions immediately, while industry also works on the bigger capital solutions such as hydrogen and Carbon Capture Usage and Storage.”

Commenting on news BP is to cut 10,000 jobs globally, OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie said:

“This shows the very real and personal impact of the Coronavirus pandemic on jobs and livelihoods while companies are stepping up to deliver the net zero agenda.

“There is a serious risk the UK loses the skills it needs not only to meet existing energy demands from domestic resources, but also to meet the UK’s climate ambitions.
“It underlines the need to continue working with governments to deliver an inclusive, fair, and sustainable transition to a lower carbon future. This is the best way to protect jobs, create new business opportunities and ensure energy regions from the north east of Scotland to the east of England are not left in the dark.”

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A key piece of research is launched today by OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry together with the Technology Leadership Board (TLB), the Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC), and Opportunity North East (ONE) to assess the pace and extent of digitalisation across the sector.

With support from Deloitte, the joint partners will use the first ever UKCS Data and Digital Maturity Survey to canvas companies, organisations and individuals on aspects including digital strategies, use of technology, data practices, capability and training, plus innovation processes used to develop a digital “idea” into a scalable reality.

While the survey will be distributed to members of the participating organisations, the project team is keen to encourage feedback from companies and individuals across the sector whatever their role, seniority or discipline and the survey will be open online until the deadline of June 16.

Deirdre Michie, OGUK Chief Executive, said:
“Smart use of data, advanced analytics and digitalisation brings greater visibility and clarity to support strategic decision-making, helping to improve North Sea competitiveness. The data and insights generated by the survey will give the four participating organisations invaluable insight of the sector’s digital skills and the cultural behaviours required to deliver the digital transformation we need to help realise our net-zero and lower carbon economy ambitions.”

Sir Ian Wood, KT GBE, Chair ONE, said,
‘’ At a time of rapid acceleration in digital adoption and transformation across businesses, the output of this comprehensive, industry-wide survey will provide all partner organisations with valuable insight of the current landscape. ONE’s focus is on activity that will maintain momentum, support the region to prepare for the recovery and maximise oil and gas recovery alongside the region’s opportunity for the fast development of energy transition. The output of the survey will help shape and develop a distinctive EnergyTech proposition, designed to bring new ways of thinking and working across the energy sector and in turn catalyse demand across our region’s digital companies.”

Colette Cohen OBE, CEO of the Oil & Gas Technology Centre said:
“The journey to a net zero future will require our industry to embrace digitalisation at pace. The opportunity it provides from increased efficiency, reduced carbon footprint and improved safety is critical to the sustainability of the industry. This collaboration will provide a valuable insight into the current status of North Sea digitisation and help focus future investment and deployment of appropriate technologies to fully unlock the potential of the region.”

Carlo Procaccini, TLB Co-chair, OGA, said:
“This Digital Maturity Survey is a very important initiative in the oil and gas industry’s digital journey. The Survey will allow us to learn from each other, and other sectors, so we can ensure that our digital transformation delivers the most value to our industry.”

The survey should take no more than 15-30 minutes to complete. The anonymised data collected will be shared in confidence across all four participating organisations to help shape their respective initiatives in support of digitalisation with OGUK planning to use the findings as the basis of an industry workshop planned for September 2020.

The survey can be found at this link http://surveyhub.deloitte.co.uk/wix/p292291302256.aspx

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OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry, has launched a new online knowledge-sharing network aimed at encouraging companies to work collaboratively to share problems and source solutions to their efficiency challenges.

Users can access the Problem-Solving Network via OGUK’s Efficiency Hub, where they can post their problems and have them reviewed by OGUK’s Continuous Improvement Network whose members will apply their expertise to sourcing specialists in their field and finding answers.

Commenting, Emily Taylor, OGUK’s Continuous Improvement Manager,
“Making oil and gas production more efficient is a huge undertaking for companies facing the triple whammy of oil and gas price reductions plus Covid-19, but the Problem-Solving Network enables companies to make quick connections and find support amongst their peers to help them achieve continuous business improvement.

OGUK is achieving constructive engagement with members via highly attended webinars and online meetings of its many forums and groups. From testing the demand for the Network, we’ve seen participants requesting information on topics including how to donate personal protection equipment (PPE) to the NHS and where to find examples of collaboration good practice. We can harness our sector’s ingenuity to find solutions to support our world-class supply chain, prolonging the productive life of the North Sea to ensure we have a sustainable industry that can help deliver a net zero basin.”

Phil Simons, VP North Sea and Canada at Subsea 7 and chair of the industry’s Efficiency Task Force:
“Recognising the value of collaboration when tackling any immense challenge – The Problem-Solving Network can quickly partner good practice and expertise with ingenuity and opportunity. Solving problems can be a complex and lengthy process, but it is speed and simplicity that we should push for now. This network provides a vehicle for connecting knowledge in a simple, structured and accurate way, to help quickly and clearly understand each problem and then form the foundations of a safe and cost-effective solution.”

Colin Black, Managing Director of Carjon-NRG Ltd and OGUK Efficiency Task Force Steering Group member commented:
“Maintaining safe and efficient operations will occasionally present challenges that teams encounter for the first time. That’s where the Problem-Solving Network plays a key role in providing a central place for questions to be asked and feedback shared by an experienced OGUK peer group often working across the global oil, gas and energy sector as well as in other industries”.
The Problem-solving webpage can be found here

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Following the publication of a new report published today by Professor Alex Kamp of  the University of Aberdeen, which has modelled the impact of $25, $35 and $45 oil prices, with corresponding gas rates, OGUK’s market intelligence manager, Ross Dornan said:

“OGUK continues to work with governments and the OGA to understand how we can protect the sector now, support its recovery and accelerate net zero opportunities. We know that low oil and gas prices, along with the impact of Covid-19 on operations, have created a very uncertain outlook as this report points out. This has resulted in difficult decisions having to be made by companies, with our recent Business Outlook Report warning up to 30,000 jobs could be lost. Remaining as competitive as possible to attract investment, alongside innovative and flexible approaches and business models, will be required to ensure we can not only continue to meet as much of the UK’s energy needs from domestic oil and gas, but also prepare the UK to fully capitalise on net zero opportunities of the future.”

The leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas sector has convened a group of experts to help shape the sector’s recovery as it looks beyond the immediate health and safety issues posed by COVID-19. BP regional president Ariel Flores, Aker Solutions Head of UK and SVP Europe and Africa Sian Lloyd-Rees, Asset Solutions CEO at Wood Dave, VP Upstream at Shell Steve Phimister and Chrysaor CEO Phil Kirk will develop a strategy for the sector to recover as part of OGUK’s three stage framework revealed at the end of April.

The recovery group will focus on opportunities with short to midterm impact, with a view to stimulating much needed fresh activity for supply chain companies. Proposals to bring forward net-zero projects in energy communities across the UK are already at the centre of discussions on how to boost business opportunities, with industry leaders set to open discussions with the UK and Scottish Government on Carbon Capture and Storage, hydrogen and floating wind.

The group will explore opportunities from exploration to decommissioning, from maintenance programmes and desktop engineering design work, to offshore work programmes, to identify where projects could be brought forward or more widely promoted to stimulate activity levels for companies servicing the sector.

Following a briefing to media where the plans were set out in more detail, OGUK Operations Director Katy Heidenreich said:

“We know that we can’t wait around for a recovery to come to us, which is why we’re already in action to understand where we can support supply chain companies and identify fresh opportunities in a challenging low oil and gas price environment.

“Many of our members are already active in bringing carbon capture and storage, hydrogen and offshore floating wind projects to life across the UK. Our recovery plan will not only look at how we can support the oil and gas industry through improving our competitiveness as a basin, it will also look at how we can use this as an opportunity to position ourselves as an incubator for net zero projects.

“With extensive skills, capabilities and experience, it’s clear our will continue to play an important role in meeting as much of the UK’s oil and gas needs from domestic resources, while also shaping up to play an even bigger role in delivering the UK’s net zero ambitions.”

Ends

Companies aiming to get the best possible output from existing North Sea assets, while deferring major new offshore projects, can now boost their efforts with new guidelines published by OGUK today aimed at unlocking brownfield resource opportunities.

The guidelines aim to help companies understand good practice in how to identify, rank, approve and carry out opportunities to optimise production in areas including well and reservoir reviews, facilities reviews and reservoir surveillance along with methods to set targets, measure progress and assign budgets.

Commenting, OGUK’s Operations Director Katy Heidenreich said:

“Looking after UK assets is crucial to the long-term future of the basin, especially at a time when a significant number of North Sea projects are put on hold. These guidelines help companies develop, maintain and operate existing assets, finding the most efficient way to recover reserves from existing sites. They help asset owners promote a culture focused on optimising production, enabling them to consistently do the right things to identify and then exploit opportunities as well as promoting the collective will, behaviours and capabilities to achieve this.

“This is the latest initiative from the UK offshore industry to improve production efficiency. Alongside other programmes such as the competitive well delivery initiative, it will ensure we can continue to meet as much of the UK’s oil and gas needs from domestic resources while also putting our sector in the best position to support the transition to net zero.”

Brenda Wyllie, OGA NNS Area Manager and MER Wells Task Force co-chair, said:
“When we look at the data from the OGA’s UKCS stewardship survey, it’s clear that there’s considerable additional value held in brownfield resources. Oil and gas will remain an important part of our energy mix for the foreseeable future as we transition to net zero, so increasing recovery and maturing these resources should remain a priority, despite the associated challenges.

“The new guidelines offer industry helpful suggestions for unlocking additional potential in brownfield resources, by embracing collaboration, integration and supply chain engagement. The checklists and toolbox in the guidelines are proven practices introduced by senior industry professionals; practices which I believe can increase the recovery of further barrels, as long as industry are willing and are dedicated to applying them.”

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Commenting on the OGA’s announcement that it has signalled its intention to refresh its core aim, including a requirement for industry to help the government achieve the target of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 –

Mike Tholen, OGUK’s sustainability director, said:

“The UK oil and gas industry was one of the first industrial sectors to set out credible plans to support the UK and Scottish Government net zero emissions ambitions with the launch of Roadmap 2035 in September 2019: a blueprint for net zero.  Substantial progress has been achieved over the past year to provide both industry and economy-wide solutions towards reducing emissions and we have been working with our members to set out challenging targets and deadlines to achieve this. Among the initiatives under way are projects to improve energy efficiency and optimisation of offshore operations  plus opportunities to use renewable energy sources or connection to onshore power grid or neighbouring wind developments.
It will need joint action between government and industry to accelerate progress to the next stage where our sector is in a unique position to lead in the development of Carbon Capture Usage and Storage and ensuring a  healthy oil and gas industry allows us build a strong base from which to build capacity and skills for energy sources of the future. ”

OGUK today confirmed it is supporting the roll-out of a special protective face covering designed for workers travelling to offshore installations in the UK Continental Shelf.

The covering can be best described as a snood or buff and is better suited for helicopter travel because it is easier to pull away from the mouth if the emergency breathing equipment is required, it is more comfortable to wear, communication is easier and the risk of FOD (Foreign Object Debris ) damage is eliminated, i.e. objects being sucked into a helicopters engine intakes.

OGUK has been working on the use of the snood for the offshore workforce through its Pandemic Steering Group. It has been tested for surface and underwater escape purposes and its use is endorsed by the four helicopter companies. The process will be managed by Survitec who are procuring supplies for use by the offshore industry at all helicopter departure locations, with guidance on the use of the snoods issued by OGUK shortly.

The snood is for use on the flight only, and forms part of a range of measures to support the safety offshore workforce.

OGUK HSE Director Trevor Stapleton:

“All workers travelling offshore will be issued with a protective snood following their routine temperature check at the heliport. The snood will then be worn in the heliport and for the duration of travel both to and from the installation only. They are single use and personnel will be issued with a new snood for each trip offshore.

“The snood represents just one of the barriers being employed to mitigate and manage COVID-19 across our essential workforce. Robust checks prior to mobilisation, temperature testing and testing are also in use alongside additional measures to protect the workforce whilst offshore including social distancing, staggered mealtimes, and where possible single person cabin occupancy. Taken together we’ve got a comprehensive response but we continue to develop this through listening to our people and continuing to push for expanded testing capability across our workforce.”

Ross Johnston, Energy Sales Manager, Survitec:
“After OGUK approached us as the primary supplier of PPE and safety equipment to the aviation industry, we identified the Virustatic Shield as an appropriate product for people travelling on all UK Category A and Category B helicopter flights. We are pleased to support the industry by sourcing, procuring and supplying the Virustatic Shield to help reduce the risk for our customers and keep crews, passengers and offshore personnel safe.”

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OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry will host a series of webinars for its member companies to learn more about the business support available to them as they manage and respond to the impact of COVID-19.

Matt Abraham, OGUK’s supply chain director, said:

“Many companies in our industry, especially in the supply chain, are still financially fragile after the previous downturn so the UK Government’s commitment to supporting both workers and companies is very welcome. It’s now crucial for us to ensure these companies understand how they can effectively access the money they need to maintain their cash flow through these challenging times.”

On Thursday April 9, the webinar will focus on the furlough scheme, the business support package the UK government has made available to employers through the temporary Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Attendees will hear an overview of how the furlough scheme works and will have the opportunity to ask the expert panel questions.
The panel, chaired by Matt Abraham, will comprise:

Dr Alix Thom, Workforce Engagement & Skills Manager – OGUK
Charlotte Edwards – Global Employment Taxes Senior Manager AAB
Alison Woods, Partner – CMS
Tony Hadden, Head of Employment and Immigration – Brodies
Sean Salouja, Partner – Burness Paull

The following Tuesday on April 14 at 2pm, OGUK will host a second webinar on the COVID19 business loan options.
These will include the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme(CBILS), COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility(CCFF), and VAT relief.

Speakers will be announced nearer the time.

Emily Taylor, OGUK’s continuous improvement manager is encouraging participants to send in questions in advance of the webinar to ensure all concerns regarding the business support schemes are addressed. These can be sent to OGUK at [email protected]

To register for the webinar, the link is at https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/3138725672338295054

The leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry has launched a survey in a bid to help find solutions to the problems faced by the supply chain as it deals with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and low oil and gas prices.

A comprehensive set of questions covering offshore activity levels, the financial position of companies, employment levels and plans, investment and feedback on steps that can be taken by industry and government to support the sector was issued to the hundreds of OGUK member companies in the industry’s supply chain who range from larger contractors to small and medium sized enterprises.

The results of the survey will inform the details of a COVID 19 Sectoral Resilience Package being put together by industry to propose to governments in the coming weeks. It will build upon the already extensive support offered by governments to companies and self-employed workers and is intended to directly address sector-specific issues. This includes what has come to be known as the stranded middle: companies who currently would not be eligible to apply for the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan (CBIL) Scheme or the COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF).

On Wednesday, BEIS Energy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng joined OGUK’s contractor council to hear first-hand the challenges facing the sector.

Last night in line with requests from OGUK, the UK government announced it has introduced a  Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) which will provide a government guarantee of 80% to enable banks to make loans of up to £25 million to firms with an annual turnover of between £45 million and £500 million.

OGUK today said it hopes to announce further details on its proposals in the coming weeks.

Commenting, OGUK Supply Chain Director Matt Abraham said:

“Our supply chain is facing pressures in the extreme. The operational impact of the coronavirus pandemic, low oil and gas demand and low prices mean an uncertain future for many. This triple whammy of concern comes only as many were just starting to emerge from the impact of the previous prolonged downturn. Last night’s announcement from government is welcome and confirms it is listening and responding to feedback, however there are still specific issues with regards to support for the oil and gas sector which OGUK is working to address with both UK and Scottish governments.

“We’re hoping this survey will give us a clear idea of where governments and regulators can offer specific help that will really make a difference and we’re urging all of our members in the supply chain to take part. In the coming days and weeks, we’ll put forward to government our proposals for a COVID19 Sectoral Resilience Package and look forward to continuing what has been a positive and constructive dialogue. We’re grateful to the CBI particularly for their support in developing our proposals – remaining joined up across industries is critical as we look to protect jobs and businesses.”

Information for the industry about COVID-19 is available at www.oilandgasuk.co.uk/covid-19

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OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry and Step Change in Safety, the industry’s recognised safety organisation, have co-produced a series of films to address the concerns of thousands of workers travelling offshore during the coronavirus pandemic.

There are currently two films available to view with the first co-presented by OGUK’s aviation advisor, Graham Wildgoose and Matt Rhodes, Bristow Helicopters UK and member of the Step Change in Safety Leadership Team. Together they address aspects of helicopter travel including operational procedures, arrival and departure protocols, and the transfer of passengers.

The second film features OGUK’s medical advisor, Dr Graham Furnace providing answers to questions regarding the workforce’s concerns around current coronavirus-related medical and health issues. Topics he covers include temperature checking, measures to take when temperatures are high and self-isolation offshore.
The films also feature contributions from OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie and Step Change in Safety Executive Director Steve Rae, who in a joint statement published today, said:

“Our industry has health and safety at its core and in adjusting to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve all had to make radical changes to the way we live and work. For many the new normal is working from home, but for thousands of people in our industry going to work means travelling by helicopter offshore to help meet our daily energy needs.
The means by which we prepare for, and undertake, these journeys has had to change. These essential changes are by design intended to provide additional barriers to protect against the spread of this virus offshore, allowing us to continue to provide continuity of energy supply to support the vital work that all key workers are undertaking to protect the health and wellbeing of our nation. With that in mind it is our duty to ensure that our workforces concerns are responded to in a timely and factual manner.

“These films are part of a series to support our workforce with comprehensive information about travelling offshore when they most need it.”

Two films are now available to view on both the Step Change in Safety and the OGUK websites here.
www.stepchangeinsafety.net/covid-19
www.oilandgasuk.co.uk/covid-19

April 1 marks the 11th anniversary of the helicopter flight 85N accident in which 16 people lost their lives . Every year since, family members, friends and colleagues of those lost have gathered at the memorial in Johnston Gardens Aberdeen to remember those lost. Due to the coronavirus, people are unable to physically come together so the industry’s chaplain, Reverend Gordon Craig has provided a short, recorded act of remembrance online which can be accessed here https://youtu.be/e6ZXS0hXAnE

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OGUK responds to UK’s 32nd Offshore Licensing Round Awards announced by OGA

Commenting on the OGA’s announcement of the award offers in the 32nd Licensing Round

Katy Heidenreich, OGUK’s supply chain and operations director said:

“At a time when companies face huge pressures it is encouraging that our basin continues to demonstrate its attractiveness to a wide range of companies. This is a crucial element in unlocking the new investment that will help continue to meet UK energy needs and sustain jobs across our sector.
As a net importer of oil and gas it is critical that the UK continues to explore for and develop new resources in terms of energy security. Achieving this means we can continue to anchor our world-class expertise in the UK as our sector positions itself to play a key role in the transition to a lower carbon future as outlined in industry’s Roadmap 2035.”

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Major new report sets baseline to push greater progress in digitalisation

Findings from the first survey of digitalisation in the oil and gas industry reveal there’s a strong appetite to ensure technology is matured to improve the sector’s connectivity, efficiency and sustainability but highlight the need to promote collaborative working if these transformational changes are to become a reality.

With support from Deloitte, the UKCS Data and Digital Maturity Survey was launched in June 2020 by OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry, in partnership with the Technology Leadership Board (TLB), the Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC), and Opportunity North East (ONE) to assess the maturity of digitalisation across the sector.

Compiled with input from a cross section of more than 70 organisations and almost 40 individuals, full details of the report will be shared at a free webinar chaired by Dr Dan Brown, Executive Director of OGUK subsidiary Common Data Access (CDA) together with CDA Delivery Manager Sakthi Norton on 1 September. Key speakers at the event will include:
• Mikki Corcoran, Co-Chair TLB
• Alex Macdonald, Digital Transformation Project Manager, OGTC
• Jared Owen, Director of Digital and Entrepreneurship, Opportunity North East (ONE)

Following the presentations, John Seabourn, Chief Digital Officer, OGA and Guri Neote Director of Deloitte Consulting’s Digital Capital Projects team will join the speakers in an interactive panel session.

Deirdre Michie, OBE OGUK Chief Executive, said:
“This timely report provides industry with an invaluable baseline for developing the strategies we need to realise the huge potential for digitalisation, enabling our industry to become more connected, efficient and sustainable in the process. Digitalisation is as much about culture as technology and the report highlights the importance of businesses working together to share ideas, challenge themselves and combine expertise to deliver the transformational change we need to spur our sector’s recovery and support an accelerated transition to net zero.”

Sir Ian Wood, KT GBE, Chair ONE, said,
“The report provides critical insight at a time when businesses of all sizes are having to adapt to major market and customer changes. While the industry is strong in the technical aspects of digital, it lacks the innovation mindset and culture to be decisive in digital transformation in relation to its peers. It is encouraging to see a strong desire for collaboration but it’s still not strong enough and we need to pick up the pace in this area if we are to fast-track progress. It’s imperative that we use the findings to collectively tailor action and catalyse a more digitally focused industry.”

Colette Cohen OBE, CEO of the Oil & Gas Technology Centre said:
“Digitalisation provides opportunities for increased efficiency, reduced carbon footprint and improved safety, which are crucial in the transition to a net zero future. This report shows that industry collaboration is the enabler, with the true potential of data being unlocked through a shared approach to industry challenges.”

Mikki Corcoran, Co-Chair TLB, Schlumberger, said
“Genuine digital transformation is fundamental to remaining a strategic energy supplier to the U.K. in a net zero world. Today we have the technology we need; leadership and vision are required to make this a reality on the UKCS.”

Graham Hollis, Office Senior Partner for Deloitte in Aberdeen added: “This report provides timely insight into the topics that matter most to businesses of all sizes operating across the UK’s oil and gas sector. It is promising to see the progress industry has made to date in its digital journey, however it is clear there remains many challenges that need to be overcome for industry to truly maximise the opportunity provided by digitalisation.”

The detailed survey report and summary slides can be found at the OGUK website

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OGUK welcomes trio to Board with industry focus on recovery efforts

 

The leading representative body for the UK oil and gas industry, OGUK, has appointed three major business leaders to its board as the sector sharpens its focus on recovery.

 

As UK Managing Director of gas-focused exploration and production company, Neptune Energy, Alexandra Thomas represents one of the leading independents investing in the UK North Sea. With international expertise in exploration and development, Alexandra brings 18 years’ oil and gas experience to OGUK’s board. She started her career on assignments with Shell and Equinor later working in senior leadership roles in the UK, Netherlands, Norway and Ghana, where she was Tullow Oil’s Head of Exploration, Development and Commercial before joining Neptune in 2020. An ardent promoter of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, Alexandra champions for women in engineering and technical roles and mentors a number of men and women in their career development.

 

 

 

 

BP’s Senior Vice President for the North Sea Emeka Emembolu has significant knowowledge of the company having joined the business in 1998. Since starting his career as a production engineer on bp’s ETAP development in the central North Sea, Emeka has worked in diverse technical and leadership roles in regions across the globe including the UK, Angola, Algeria, Egypt, Alaska and latterly Texas where he was Vice President, Reservoir Development for the Gulf of Mexico & Canada. Emeka is passionate about promoting STEM subjects and highlighting the potential for technology to deliver solutions to industry’s challenges.

 

 

 

 

 

As Regional Director for CHC Helicopter’s European, Middle East and African business, Mark Abbey has a wealth of aerospace and aviation experience built up over 35 years in the industry. Mark’s career has encompassed senior management positions in Europe, the USA, India and China. Earlier in his career, Mark spent 16 years at BAE Systems in an executive role managing their aircraft systems and operational facilities for assets including the Hawk Jet Trainer.

 

 

 

Deirdre Michie, OGUK’s chief executive, commented:

“The diverse experience and knowledge that Emeka, Mark and Alexandra bring to the OGUK Board will be a great asset as our industry tackles a challenging landscape of low commodity prices and the coronavirus pandemic, while at the same time seeking to support the UK’s cleaner climate ambitions.

“This diversity of perspectives from across industry is critical as we work to deliver Roadmap 2035, finding solutions for low carbon oil and gas production while doing everything we can to revive our world-class but fragile supply chain and protect the skills of our people for the future.“

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Supply Chain focus boosted as OGUK creates new integrated directorate

Katy HeidenreichThe leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry is driving its supply chain agenda forward by appointing Katy Heidenreich, director responsible for leading its supply chain and operations activities.

Currently spearheading OGUK’s Recovery Group’s work with industry, Government and regulators to stimulate investment in the basin, Katy will focus on supply chain activities while progressing initiatives aimed at increasing UKCS activity to sustain jobs across the sector’s beleaguered supply chain.

In her new role, Katy will build on the significant progress achieved by Matt Abraham, who leaves the representative body to take up a leadership role in a major contractor company after two and a half years as OGUK’s supply chain and exports director.

Katy’s extensive supply chain experience includes 27 years in the oil and gas industry working in technical and senior management roles in the UK, Norway and Azerbaijan. She joined OGUK in 2015 after 15 years with Schlumberger Oilfield services, latterly as Commercial Manager for UK, Holland and Denmark. Katy is also the author of ‘The industry’s best kept secret’- a book designed to inspire and encourage more women to consider careers in the energy sector.

OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie commented:
“Our industry has the essential expertise to help the UK meet its climate ambitions by 2050 and power the green recovery. At the same time, we can help keep costs low for households and families, retain jobs and create new roles for the future.

“Supporting a sustainable recovery is at the heart of all this, and Katy will have a critical role in bringing the supply chain together with our operations to support much needed recovery, at pace. Katy’s expertise in optimising operations to help unlock investment will help stimulate much needed activity for our world-class but fragile supply chain.

“I’m also grateful to Matt for his contribution to OGUK and industry during some of our most challenging times and wish him every success for the future.”

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OGUK webinar to highlight progress on sector’s road to recovery

OGUK’s drive to ensure the UK oil and gas sector is taking collective action to stimulate its own recovery comes under focus in a free webinar featuring leading industry figures on Thursday 27 August.

Since April 2020, members of OGUK’s Recovery Group have been working across the industry to help shape the sector’s recovery as it looks beyond the issues posed by the coronavirus, tackles the challenge of sustained low commodity prices and takes steps to support the energy transition.

Chair of the webinar, Katy Heidenreich, OGUK’s Operations Director commented:
“OGUK is spearheading and supporting a number of self-help initiatives aimed at helping our industry recover from the triple threat of COVID-19, the dramatic crash in oil price and the lowest gas prices for 14 years. Working closely with government and regulators, we’re focusing on areas throughout the oil and gas lifecycle from exploration to decommissioning where we can boost competitiveness, unlock planned work programmes and stimulate activity for our world-class but fragile supply chain. Supporting recovery now is key to the industry realising its full potential through the energy transition and this webinar is an ideal chance to hear about progress achieved to date and proposals aimed at unlocking investment.”

Keynote speakers include Neil McCulloch, Executive VP, Technical & Operated Assets, Spirit Energy who will highlight the importance of strengthening the UK oil and gas sector now to attract new investment, retain the skills to recover activity and support the energy transition towards a low carbon economy.

Scott Robertson, Director of Operations at the OGA will cover a range for topics from the regulator’s perspective, including the significant prize remaining on the UKCS, and what the OGA has been doing to stimulate recovery. He will also provide an update on the new OGA Strategy which will incorporate net zero considerations, and outline what the OGA expects from industry and what industry can expect from the OGA going forward.

Members of OGUK’s recovery group will share examples of ongoing initiatives, with Gavin Rogers, Director of Innovation, Digital & Technology at Wood, discussing a collaboration between members to support a data-driven methodology that can optimise resource utilisation within the UKCS.

In a separate case study, Martin White Vice President, Halliburton and a member of the OGA/ Industry Wells Task Force will demonstrate the benefits of adopting a multi-operator campaign approach when executing well operations.

The webinar at 10 am on Thursday August 27 will include a panel session and places can be booked online https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/road-to-recovery-uk-oil-and-gas-industry-action-tickets-114507679552

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OGUK partners with skills body to offer support to redundant oil and gas workers

The leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas sector has partnered with Skills Development Scotland to signpost support for oil and gas workers impacted by redundancy.

The free webinar is open to anyone looking for support and advice on roles within the energy sector and will signpost attendees towards practical support and opportunities.

Earlier this year OGUK warned up to 30,000 jobs could be lost as the sector faces both the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on its operations and the sustained low oil and gas prices. Up to 9000 redundancies are reported to have been made so far, with the industry engaged in discussions with the UK government on a sector deal which could enable the sector to support the UK’s moves towards net zero by 2050.

OGUK today said that the webinar was one of a range of proactive measures the industry is taking to shape its future and support a recovery which also helps the sector play a full role in the energy transition.

Commenting, OGUK’s Workforce Engagement and Skills Manager Dr Alix Thom said:

“Our free webinar is open to anyone impacted by redundancy and will offer practical support as well as highlighting relevant opportunities in the wider energy industry.

“These are challenging times for all industries, and we are seeing the impact of this on people’s jobs and livelihoods nearly every day in the news. Though we are conscious that we will need their skills in the future as the sector recovers and embraces its role in the energy transition, we also recognise the human cost of the last four months and the need to try and help those who have applied their considerable skills on the industry’s behalf.

“Whilst our sector is remarkably resilient with remarkably resilient people, the challenges of both the pandemic and sustained low commodity prices put even further pressure on an industry that was only just beginning to emerge from the downturn.

“We continue to work with the UK government on developing a sector deal, and will also be putting more detailed support measures forward to both governments to help ensure that our industry can realise its full potential through the transition to a lower carbon future.”

  1. The free employment support and advice session will take place at 10am, Tuesday August 18. It is open to all and registration can be found here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/employment-support-and-advice-session-tickets-115881768489

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Share Fair webinar gives suppliers sight of business opportunities ahead

Major contractor Petrofac will be sharing its future project and activity plans with companies seeking new business opportunities at OGUK’s free Share Fair Spotlight webinar on August 4.

Part of a series of online business development events, the webinar enables attendees to engage with potential clients, gain insight of future contracts and quiz Petrofac’s experts in an online panel session.

Commenting, OGUK’s Supply Chain Director, Matt Abraham said:

“Many parts of the UK supply chain are under severe pressure as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and volatile commodity prices so these digital Share Fairs aim to promote stronger interaction between operators, contractors and suppliers at all scales of operation. They’re a great way for clients to meet existing companies as well as increase their market awareness of other companies with value-adding services and goods.”

Participants who register for the hour-long event will hear Roy Choudhury, Supply Chain Director, Cheryl McRae, Subcontract Team Lead and Daniel Gear, Strategic Programme Lead outlining Petrofac’s forward work programme for the UK North Sea as well as plans for decommissioning, lump-sum contracting and its plans to support the energy transition, including updates on ongoing projects. Attendees will be among the first to hear about the launch of Petrofac’s new Supplier Hub which aims to improve supply chain interaction and streamline processes.

To register for the event which takes place 11am-noon on Tuesday 4 August, visit OGUK’s webinar booking site at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/share-fair-spotlight-petrofac-tickets-111305142678.

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Digital Debut for OGUK’s Share Fair

One of the offshore oil and gas industry’s most significant business development events is going digital in July when OGUK launches the first of its series of Share Fair Spotlight webinars featuring the forward work plans of Spirit Energy next week.

Matt Abraham, OGUK’s supply chain director said:
“Transforming Share Fair from a one-day event into a series of free webinars throughout the year will provide our much-beleaguered supply chain with regular access to timely information, early engagement with potential clients and insight of forthcoming contracts on offer. They’re focused on driving stronger engagement between operators, contractors and the wider supply chain, highlighting how businesses can connect with key people in each organisation and gain access to a panel of experts at each event.”

Spirit Energy’s plans for 2020-21 including details relating to capital projects, decommissioning, production and operations, will feature in the first Share Fair Spotlight webinar on July 1 with input from the following speakers:

• Neil McCulloch – Executive Vice-President, Technical & Operated Production
• Mark Fotheringham – Director, Capital Projects & Decommissioning
• John Cowie – Morecambe Hub Asset Manager
• Al Currie – SNS Asset Manager
• Nick Gorton – Director, Procurement & Supply Chain

Nick Gorton, Procurement & Supply Chain Director at Spirit Energy, said: “OGUK’s Share Fair has always been an important event for Spirit Energy. It’s a great opportunity for us to connect with our supply chain partners and share our plans.
“Those connections are now more important than ever, so we’re delighted that Share Fair will continue virtually this year and we’re looking forward to meeting both new and existing suppliers to see how we might work together on future opportunities.”

Matt Abraham adds: “Over the next few months, our series of Share Fair Spotlight webinars will include BP, Equinor, Perenco, Petrofac, Total and Worley. Stronger engagement between operators, contractors and the wider supply chain is vital to source the value-adding solutions that push the boundaries of innovation, technology and efficiency our supply chain needs to recover and play its role in delivering a low carbon economy.

The first Share Fair Spotlight takes place on July 1 10.30-11.30am and more information is available at https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/4102189230490841359.

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UK offshore oil and gas industry outlines plan to cut emissions as talks on transformational sector deal formally begin

The UK’s offshore oil and gas industry has today (Tuesday 16) committed to halving operational emissions in the next decade, confirming its pathway to becoming a net zero emissions basin by 2050. The sector is one of the first in the UK to commit to industry-wide targets and provide details on how they will be achieved.

A report published by industry body OGUK, The Pathway to Net Zero: Production Emissions Targets, outlines how targets will be achieved through changes to operations, progressive reductions in flaring and venting, and major capital investment programmes aimed at using electricity rather than gas, to power offshore facilities.

The targets are a key part of a transformational sector deal that industry is now formally discussing with the UK Government. With jobs, the supply chain and energy communities at its core, the sector deal will consider how the UK’s oil and gas industry can support a green recovery.

This could see the sector support wider UK efforts to decarbonise, using its skills and infrastructure to develop critical carbon-cutting solutions such as industrial scale Carbon Capture Usage and Storage, and the use of hydrogen for heating and heavy transport.

OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie OBE said:

“The coronavirus pandemic and low oil and gas prices have had a devastating impact on the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry. Given the limited impact that the severity of the lockdown has had on global emissions, it is clearer than ever that we need a fair, inclusive, and sustainable transition towards climate targets. We need a green recovery which supports jobs, supply chain companies and energy communities.

“We remain committed to addressing the challenge of climate change, as we outlined in our Roadmap 2035 published last year. Our industry will play its part by reducing its emissions and using its skills to develop the solutions that will be needed to make a significant contribution to the UK’s overall targets.

“A transformational sector deal could help unlock the full potential of this industry to support a green recovery and we’re delighted to confirm that we are now in formal discussions about it. With a clear pathway to becoming a net zero basin by 2050 and with support from governments and regulators, we can protect domestic energy supplies, jobs and communities whilst embracing the opportunities which will come from being at the forefront of delivering a low carbon economy.”

UK Government Minister for Energy Kwasi Kwarteng said:“The offshore oil and gas sector’s commitment to halving operational emissions over the next decade is a welcome step for an industry that has a vital role to play in our energy transition in the years to come. The UK Government will continue to work tirelessly with all partners to deliver a dynamic Sector Deal. This will further support the industry in becoming more sustainable, as we work towards achieving net zero emissions by 2050.”

Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Government Minister for Energy, Connectivity and the islands said:

“I welcome this report from the UK oil and gas industry and the ambitious targets committing it to halving operational emissions over the next decade.This is not only an important commitment from one of Scotland’s key sectors, but a significant step to support Scotland’s just transition to net-zero which helps us move at pace.This report is timely as it follows the Scottish Government’s announcement on Friday 12 June of £62 million to support our energy transition.”

Report author and OGUK Emissions Improvement Manager Louise O’Hara Murray added:

“These targets would remove over 9 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gas emissions from our operations over the next decade; the same as taking nearly two million cars off the road for a year. Each year we will publicly show progress against our commitments on a sector-wide basis.

“They have been developed with industry following a detailed assessment of the measures needed to deliver them. They consider changes to operations, progressive reductions in flaring and venting and major capital investment programmes to decarbonise production operations.

“Many of the major capital investment projects which will help our sector to decarbonise, including the powering of assets with electricity instead of hydrocarbons, the development and deployment of carbon capture and storage (CCS) and hydrogen both on and offshore, will need to be developed at scale to help other industries accelerate their own efforts to reduce emissions.”

Case studies 

Name: Suzie Ferguson

Age: 40

Job title: Carbon capture technical lead

Company: Wood

Location: Reading

As carbon capture technical lead in Wood’s Technical Consulting Solutions business, Suzie works on techno-economic assessments of emerging CCS technologies and the design of carbon capture plants for thermal power plants and industrial emitters in oil refining, hydrogen and petrochemicals.

Suzie comments: “As a student in chemical engineering at the University of Surrey, the vision of a more sustainable world inspired me to tackle the most defining challenge of our era – climate change – as part of my future career.

“With increasingly urgent demand to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the landscape of the energy industry is rapidly changing and seeking practical ways to decarbonise our existing assets and unlock the potential of renewable energy have become key drivers.”

As more countries set ambitious net-zero carbon emissions targets, energy intensive industries are facing the unprecedented challenge of meeting rising energy demands while minimising the carbon footprint of operations and shifting to low-carbon power generation.

She continues: “Wood is already supporting new and existing energy customers with major projects to dramatically cut emissions and improve the efficiency of their assets by delivering advanced and integrated carbon capture and storage solutions.

“CCS can safely contain more than 90% of the carbon dioxide emissions produced from the use of fossil fuels in power plants and from industrial processes such as steel and cement manufacture. This technology can even be used to capture carbon from the air, from the combustion of biomass or waste, and store it safely underground as a real time carbon offsetting.

“As a solution, CCS not only prevents emissions entering the atmosphere but could provide a shift change in the UK’s energy economy.”

Name: Euan Bathgate

Age: 39
Job title:
VP, Engineering Support
Company:
Opex Group
Location: Inverurie, Aberdeenshire

Inverurie resident and oil and gas worker Euan Bathgate has driven the development of a new solution which helps oil and gas companies reduce CO2 intensity and emissions across their operations. Euan, a VP for OPEX Group in Aberdeen, led the development of X-PAS Emissions which uses predictive technologies combined with traditional engineering to improve energy efficiency on offshore installations.

Euan explains, “The new solution provides an opportunity for operators to reduce CO2 by dynamically calculating the lowest possible emissions for a given production target and plant configuration. Users of the system have full visibility of the energy use and emissions intensity of their assets and are prompted with the operational decisions and actions they can take to reduce emissions”.

The former offshore worker says a lot has changed during his time in industry, but there will still be a role for oil and gas as part of a diverse energy mix. This underlines the importance of producing oil and gas with as little emissions as possible; “What we’re doing makes our customers’ existing data valuable and we see this solution as an important part of mix because it can make an impact on emissions immediately, while industry also works on the bigger capital solutions such as hydrogen and Carbon Capture Usage and Storage.”

BP job losses underline need to deliver fair transition to net zero

Commenting on news BP is to cut 10,000 jobs globally, OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie said:

“This shows the very real and personal impact of the Coronavirus pandemic on jobs and livelihoods while companies are stepping up to deliver the net zero agenda.

“There is a serious risk the UK loses the skills it needs not only to meet existing energy demands from domestic resources, but also to meet the UK’s climate ambitions.
“It underlines the need to continue working with governments to deliver an inclusive, fair, and sustainable transition to a lower carbon future. This is the best way to protect jobs, create new business opportunities and ensure energy regions from the north east of Scotland to the east of England are not left in the dark.”

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Collaborative working to deliver new survey on oil and gas digitalisation

A key piece of research is launched today by OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry together with the Technology Leadership Board (TLB), the Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC), and Opportunity North East (ONE) to assess the pace and extent of digitalisation across the sector.

With support from Deloitte, the joint partners will use the first ever UKCS Data and Digital Maturity Survey to canvas companies, organisations and individuals on aspects including digital strategies, use of technology, data practices, capability and training, plus innovation processes used to develop a digital “idea” into a scalable reality.

While the survey will be distributed to members of the participating organisations, the project team is keen to encourage feedback from companies and individuals across the sector whatever their role, seniority or discipline and the survey will be open online until the deadline of June 16.

Deirdre Michie, OGUK Chief Executive, said:
“Smart use of data, advanced analytics and digitalisation brings greater visibility and clarity to support strategic decision-making, helping to improve North Sea competitiveness. The data and insights generated by the survey will give the four participating organisations invaluable insight of the sector’s digital skills and the cultural behaviours required to deliver the digital transformation we need to help realise our net-zero and lower carbon economy ambitions.”

Sir Ian Wood, KT GBE, Chair ONE, said,
‘’ At a time of rapid acceleration in digital adoption and transformation across businesses, the output of this comprehensive, industry-wide survey will provide all partner organisations with valuable insight of the current landscape. ONE’s focus is on activity that will maintain momentum, support the region to prepare for the recovery and maximise oil and gas recovery alongside the region’s opportunity for the fast development of energy transition. The output of the survey will help shape and develop a distinctive EnergyTech proposition, designed to bring new ways of thinking and working across the energy sector and in turn catalyse demand across our region’s digital companies.”

Colette Cohen OBE, CEO of the Oil & Gas Technology Centre said:
“The journey to a net zero future will require our industry to embrace digitalisation at pace. The opportunity it provides from increased efficiency, reduced carbon footprint and improved safety is critical to the sustainability of the industry. This collaboration will provide a valuable insight into the current status of North Sea digitisation and help focus future investment and deployment of appropriate technologies to fully unlock the potential of the region.”

Carlo Procaccini, TLB Co-chair, OGA, said:
“This Digital Maturity Survey is a very important initiative in the oil and gas industry’s digital journey. The Survey will allow us to learn from each other, and other sectors, so we can ensure that our digital transformation delivers the most value to our industry.”

The survey should take no more than 15-30 minutes to complete. The anonymised data collected will be shared in confidence across all four participating organisations to help shape their respective initiatives in support of digitalisation with OGUK planning to use the findings as the basis of an industry workshop planned for September 2020.

The survey can be found at this link http://surveyhub.deloitte.co.uk/wix/p292291302256.aspx

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New online tool promotes collaborative approach to problem-solving

OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry, has launched a new online knowledge-sharing network aimed at encouraging companies to work collaboratively to share problems and source solutions to their efficiency challenges.

Users can access the Problem-Solving Network via OGUK’s Efficiency Hub, where they can post their problems and have them reviewed by OGUK’s Continuous Improvement Network whose members will apply their expertise to sourcing specialists in their field and finding answers.

Commenting, Emily Taylor, OGUK’s Continuous Improvement Manager,
“Making oil and gas production more efficient is a huge undertaking for companies facing the triple whammy of oil and gas price reductions plus Covid-19, but the Problem-Solving Network enables companies to make quick connections and find support amongst their peers to help them achieve continuous business improvement.

OGUK is achieving constructive engagement with members via highly attended webinars and online meetings of its many forums and groups. From testing the demand for the Network, we’ve seen participants requesting information on topics including how to donate personal protection equipment (PPE) to the NHS and where to find examples of collaboration good practice. We can harness our sector’s ingenuity to find solutions to support our world-class supply chain, prolonging the productive life of the North Sea to ensure we have a sustainable industry that can help deliver a net zero basin.”

Phil Simons, VP North Sea and Canada at Subsea 7 and chair of the industry’s Efficiency Task Force:
“Recognising the value of collaboration when tackling any immense challenge – The Problem-Solving Network can quickly partner good practice and expertise with ingenuity and opportunity. Solving problems can be a complex and lengthy process, but it is speed and simplicity that we should push for now. This network provides a vehicle for connecting knowledge in a simple, structured and accurate way, to help quickly and clearly understand each problem and then form the foundations of a safe and cost-effective solution.”

Colin Black, Managing Director of Carjon-NRG Ltd and OGUK Efficiency Task Force Steering Group member commented:
“Maintaining safe and efficient operations will occasionally present challenges that teams encounter for the first time. That’s where the Problem-Solving Network plays a key role in providing a central place for questions to be asked and feedback shared by an experienced OGUK peer group often working across the global oil, gas and energy sector as well as in other industries”.
The Problem-solving webpage can be found here

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OGUK responds to new academic study on future of UK oil and gas industry

Following the publication of a new report published today by Professor Alex Kamp of  the University of Aberdeen, which has modelled the impact of $25, $35 and $45 oil prices, with corresponding gas rates, OGUK’s market intelligence manager, Ross Dornan said:

“OGUK continues to work with governments and the OGA to understand how we can protect the sector now, support its recovery and accelerate net zero opportunities. We know that low oil and gas prices, along with the impact of Covid-19 on operations, have created a very uncertain outlook as this report points out. This has resulted in difficult decisions having to be made by companies, with our recent Business Outlook Report warning up to 30,000 jobs could be lost. Remaining as competitive as possible to attract investment, alongside innovative and flexible approaches and business models, will be required to ensure we can not only continue to meet as much of the UK’s energy needs from domestic oil and gas, but also prepare the UK to fully capitalise on net zero opportunities of the future.”

Offshore oil and gas industry eyes net zero opportunities in recovery plan

The leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas sector has convened a group of experts to help shape the sector’s recovery as it looks beyond the immediate health and safety issues posed by COVID-19. BP regional president Ariel Flores, Aker Solutions Head of UK and SVP Europe and Africa Sian Lloyd-Rees, Asset Solutions CEO at Wood Dave, VP Upstream at Shell Steve Phimister and Chrysaor CEO Phil Kirk will develop a strategy for the sector to recover as part of OGUK’s three stage framework revealed at the end of April.

The recovery group will focus on opportunities with short to midterm impact, with a view to stimulating much needed fresh activity for supply chain companies. Proposals to bring forward net-zero projects in energy communities across the UK are already at the centre of discussions on how to boost business opportunities, with industry leaders set to open discussions with the UK and Scottish Government on Carbon Capture and Storage, hydrogen and floating wind.

The group will explore opportunities from exploration to decommissioning, from maintenance programmes and desktop engineering design work, to offshore work programmes, to identify where projects could be brought forward or more widely promoted to stimulate activity levels for companies servicing the sector.

Following a briefing to media where the plans were set out in more detail, OGUK Operations Director Katy Heidenreich said:

“We know that we can’t wait around for a recovery to come to us, which is why we’re already in action to understand where we can support supply chain companies and identify fresh opportunities in a challenging low oil and gas price environment.

“Many of our members are already active in bringing carbon capture and storage, hydrogen and offshore floating wind projects to life across the UK. Our recovery plan will not only look at how we can support the oil and gas industry through improving our competitiveness as a basin, it will also look at how we can use this as an opportunity to position ourselves as an incubator for net zero projects.

“With extensive skills, capabilities and experience, it’s clear our will continue to play an important role in meeting as much of the UK’s oil and gas needs from domestic resources, while also shaping up to play an even bigger role in delivering the UK’s net zero ambitions.”

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New guidelines help operators to make the most of existing North Sea assets

Companies aiming to get the best possible output from existing North Sea assets, while deferring major new offshore projects, can now boost their efforts with new guidelines published by OGUK today aimed at unlocking brownfield resource opportunities.

The guidelines aim to help companies understand good practice in how to identify, rank, approve and carry out opportunities to optimise production in areas including well and reservoir reviews, facilities reviews and reservoir surveillance along with methods to set targets, measure progress and assign budgets.

Commenting, OGUK’s Operations Director Katy Heidenreich said:

“Looking after UK assets is crucial to the long-term future of the basin, especially at a time when a significant number of North Sea projects are put on hold. These guidelines help companies develop, maintain and operate existing assets, finding the most efficient way to recover reserves from existing sites. They help asset owners promote a culture focused on optimising production, enabling them to consistently do the right things to identify and then exploit opportunities as well as promoting the collective will, behaviours and capabilities to achieve this.

“This is the latest initiative from the UK offshore industry to improve production efficiency. Alongside other programmes such as the competitive well delivery initiative, it will ensure we can continue to meet as much of the UK’s oil and gas needs from domestic resources while also putting our sector in the best position to support the transition to net zero.”

Brenda Wyllie, OGA NNS Area Manager and MER Wells Task Force co-chair, said:
“When we look at the data from the OGA’s UKCS stewardship survey, it’s clear that there’s considerable additional value held in brownfield resources. Oil and gas will remain an important part of our energy mix for the foreseeable future as we transition to net zero, so increasing recovery and maturing these resources should remain a priority, despite the associated challenges.

“The new guidelines offer industry helpful suggestions for unlocking additional potential in brownfield resources, by embracing collaboration, integration and supply chain engagement. The checklists and toolbox in the guidelines are proven practices introduced by senior industry professionals; practices which I believe can increase the recovery of further barrels, as long as industry are willing and are dedicated to applying them.”

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OGUK’s response to OGA announcement regarding its proposed revised strategy to support Net Zero

Commenting on the OGA’s announcement that it has signalled its intention to refresh its core aim, including a requirement for industry to help the government achieve the target of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 –

Mike Tholen, OGUK’s sustainability director, said:

“The UK oil and gas industry was one of the first industrial sectors to set out credible plans to support the UK and Scottish Government net zero emissions ambitions with the launch of Roadmap 2035 in September 2019: a blueprint for net zero.  Substantial progress has been achieved over the past year to provide both industry and economy-wide solutions towards reducing emissions and we have been working with our members to set out challenging targets and deadlines to achieve this. Among the initiatives under way are projects to improve energy efficiency and optimisation of offshore operations  plus opportunities to use renewable energy sources or connection to onshore power grid or neighbouring wind developments.
It will need joint action between government and industry to accelerate progress to the next stage where our sector is in a unique position to lead in the development of Carbon Capture Usage and Storage and ensuring a  healthy oil and gas industry allows us build a strong base from which to build capacity and skills for energy sources of the future. ”

Oil and gas industry rolls out protective snood to offshore workforce

OGUK today confirmed it is supporting the roll-out of a special protective face covering designed for workers travelling to offshore installations in the UK Continental Shelf.

The covering can be best described as a snood or buff and is better suited for helicopter travel because it is easier to pull away from the mouth if the emergency breathing equipment is required, it is more comfortable to wear, communication is easier and the risk of FOD (Foreign Object Debris ) damage is eliminated, i.e. objects being sucked into a helicopters engine intakes.

OGUK has been working on the use of the snood for the offshore workforce through its Pandemic Steering Group. It has been tested for surface and underwater escape purposes and its use is endorsed by the four helicopter companies. The process will be managed by Survitec who are procuring supplies for use by the offshore industry at all helicopter departure locations, with guidance on the use of the snoods issued by OGUK shortly.

The snood is for use on the flight only, and forms part of a range of measures to support the safety offshore workforce.

OGUK HSE Director Trevor Stapleton:

“All workers travelling offshore will be issued with a protective snood following their routine temperature check at the heliport. The snood will then be worn in the heliport and for the duration of travel both to and from the installation only. They are single use and personnel will be issued with a new snood for each trip offshore.

“The snood represents just one of the barriers being employed to mitigate and manage COVID-19 across our essential workforce. Robust checks prior to mobilisation, temperature testing and testing are also in use alongside additional measures to protect the workforce whilst offshore including social distancing, staggered mealtimes, and where possible single person cabin occupancy. Taken together we’ve got a comprehensive response but we continue to develop this through listening to our people and continuing to push for expanded testing capability across our workforce.”

Ross Johnston, Energy Sales Manager, Survitec:
“After OGUK approached us as the primary supplier of PPE and safety equipment to the aviation industry, we identified the Virustatic Shield as an appropriate product for people travelling on all UK Category A and Category B helicopter flights. We are pleased to support the industry by sourcing, procuring and supplying the Virustatic Shield to help reduce the risk for our customers and keep crews, passengers and offshore personnel safe.”

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Webinars to highlight COVID-19 business support available to companies under pressure

OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry will host a series of webinars for its member companies to learn more about the business support available to them as they manage and respond to the impact of COVID-19.

Matt Abraham, OGUK’s supply chain director, said:

“Many companies in our industry, especially in the supply chain, are still financially fragile after the previous downturn so the UK Government’s commitment to supporting both workers and companies is very welcome. It’s now crucial for us to ensure these companies understand how they can effectively access the money they need to maintain their cash flow through these challenging times.”

On Thursday April 9, the webinar will focus on the furlough scheme, the business support package the UK government has made available to employers through the temporary Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Attendees will hear an overview of how the furlough scheme works and will have the opportunity to ask the expert panel questions.
The panel, chaired by Matt Abraham, will comprise:

Dr Alix Thom, Workforce Engagement & Skills Manager – OGUK
Charlotte Edwards – Global Employment Taxes Senior Manager AAB
Alison Woods, Partner – CMS
Tony Hadden, Head of Employment and Immigration – Brodies
Sean Salouja, Partner – Burness Paull

The following Tuesday on April 14 at 2pm, OGUK will host a second webinar on the COVID19 business loan options.
These will include the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme(CBILS), COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility(CCFF), and VAT relief.

Speakers will be announced nearer the time.

Emily Taylor, OGUK’s continuous improvement manager is encouraging participants to send in questions in advance of the webinar to ensure all concerns regarding the business support schemes are addressed. These can be sent to OGUK at [email protected]

To register for the webinar, the link is at https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/3138725672338295054

OGUK launches survey to understand issues facing supply chain

The leading representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry has launched a survey in a bid to help find solutions to the problems faced by the supply chain as it deals with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and low oil and gas prices.

A comprehensive set of questions covering offshore activity levels, the financial position of companies, employment levels and plans, investment and feedback on steps that can be taken by industry and government to support the sector was issued to the hundreds of OGUK member companies in the industry’s supply chain who range from larger contractors to small and medium sized enterprises.

The results of the survey will inform the details of a COVID 19 Sectoral Resilience Package being put together by industry to propose to governments in the coming weeks. It will build upon the already extensive support offered by governments to companies and self-employed workers and is intended to directly address sector-specific issues. This includes what has come to be known as the stranded middle: companies who currently would not be eligible to apply for the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan (CBIL) Scheme or the COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF).

On Wednesday, BEIS Energy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng joined OGUK’s contractor council to hear first-hand the challenges facing the sector.

Last night in line with requests from OGUK, the UK government announced it has introduced a  Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) which will provide a government guarantee of 80% to enable banks to make loans of up to £25 million to firms with an annual turnover of between £45 million and £500 million.

OGUK today said it hopes to announce further details on its proposals in the coming weeks.

Commenting, OGUK Supply Chain Director Matt Abraham said:

“Our supply chain is facing pressures in the extreme. The operational impact of the coronavirus pandemic, low oil and gas demand and low prices mean an uncertain future for many. This triple whammy of concern comes only as many were just starting to emerge from the impact of the previous prolonged downturn. Last night’s announcement from government is welcome and confirms it is listening and responding to feedback, however there are still specific issues with regards to support for the oil and gas sector which OGUK is working to address with both UK and Scottish governments.

“We’re hoping this survey will give us a clear idea of where governments and regulators can offer specific help that will really make a difference and we’re urging all of our members in the supply chain to take part. In the coming days and weeks, we’ll put forward to government our proposals for a COVID19 Sectoral Resilience Package and look forward to continuing what has been a positive and constructive dialogue. We’re grateful to the CBI particularly for their support in developing our proposals – remaining joined up across industries is critical as we look to protect jobs and businesses.”

Information for the industry about COVID-19 is available at www.oilandgasuk.co.uk/covid-19

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Industry films address offshore travel concerns

OGUK, the leading representative body for the UK’s offshore oil and gas industry and Step Change in Safety, the industry’s recognised safety organisation, have co-produced a series of films to address the concerns of thousands of workers travelling offshore during the coronavirus pandemic.

There are currently two films available to view with the first co-presented by OGUK’s aviation advisor, Graham Wildgoose and Matt Rhodes, Bristow Helicopters UK and member of the Step Change in Safety Leadership Team. Together they address aspects of helicopter travel including operational procedures, arrival and departure protocols, and the transfer of passengers.

The second film features OGUK’s medical advisor, Dr Graham Furnace providing answers to questions regarding the workforce’s concerns around current coronavirus-related medical and health issues. Topics he covers include temperature checking, measures to take when temperatures are high and self-isolation offshore.
The films also feature contributions from OGUK Chief Executive Deirdre Michie and Step Change in Safety Executive Director Steve Rae, who in a joint statement published today, said:

“Our industry has health and safety at its core and in adjusting to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve all had to make radical changes to the way we live and work. For many the new normal is working from home, but for thousands of people in our industry going to work means travelling by helicopter offshore to help meet our daily energy needs.
The means by which we prepare for, and undertake, these journeys has had to change. These essential changes are by design intended to provide additional barriers to protect against the spread of this virus offshore, allowing us to continue to provide continuity of energy supply to support the vital work that all key workers are undertaking to protect the health and wellbeing of our nation. With that in mind it is our duty to ensure that our workforces concerns are responded to in a timely and factual manner.

“These films are part of a series to support our workforce with comprehensive information about travelling offshore when they most need it.”

Two films are now available to view on both the Step Change in Safety and the OGUK websites here.
www.stepchangeinsafety.net/covid-19
www.oilandgasuk.co.uk/covid-19

April 1 marks the 11th anniversary of the helicopter flight 85N accident in which 16 people lost their lives . Every year since, family members, friends and colleagues of those lost have gathered at the memorial in Johnston Gardens Aberdeen to remember those lost. Due to the coronavirus, people are unable to physically come together so the industry’s chaplain, Reverend Gordon Craig has provided a short, recorded act of remembrance online which can be accessed here https://youtu.be/e6ZXS0hXAnE

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