West of Shetland O&G field owners explore electrification options

4C Offshore | Tom Russell
By: 06/12/2022 Equinor
bp, Equinor and Ithaca Energy have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to explore electrification options for their West of Shetland oil and gas interests.

Electrification solutions could include power from shore (potentially from onshore wind) or from offshore wind. Full electrification would require in the region of 200 MW of power.

In order to become some of the first oil and gas developments on the UK continental shelf to be powered by electricity, the project is seeking to overcome technical challenges presented by the remote and deep-water locations of the fields, as well as some commercial, regulatory, and consenting hurdles.

It follows formation of the West of Shetland Electrification (WoSE) group, acting on behalf of the joint venture partners of the Clair, Rosebank and Cambo fields.

The WoSE group claims its objective to evaluate options for a hub electrification concept is aligned with the North Sea Transition Authority's and UK Government's aim of supporting domestic oil and gas production with the lowest carbon footprint possible. It also supports the North Sea sector's ambitions to become a net zero basin and the North Sea Transition Deal agreed between the UK government and the offshore oil and gas industry in March 2021.

A spokesperson for the WoSE group said: "This initiative seeks to evaluate the technical, commercial, and regulatory challenges of various low-carbon power hub solutions to recommend a technically and commercially viable option that can meet the requirements of the three field owners within the respective project timeframes.

"Continued production from the West of Shetland supports the UK Government's drive for home-grown oil and gas with a lower carbon footprint while protecting the jobs, skills and supply chain needed to drive the energy transition. Each of the companies in the WoSE group is proud to be playing its part."