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Offshore Energies UK launches 2024 industry manifesto: choose a homegrown energy transition

26 February 2024

Offshore Energies UK (OEUK) today publishes its industry manifesto, showing how a homegrown energy transition built on private sector investment will be good for jobs, economic growth and communities across the UK. This is the exciting opportunity the UK must take, not waste in a general election year.

The agenda-setting proposals show how a new era of homegrown energy could power the UK’s journey to net zero if private investment conditions are right. The Office for Budget Responsibility says net zero will cost the UK £1.4 trillion and the lion’s share must come from industry. OEUK’s manifesto shows how this investment can be unlocked by policymakers.

A homegrown energy transition could safeguard and supercharge the UK’s highly skilled energy production workforce. More than 200,000 jobs around the UK depend on the sector and our people have the expertise to build the UK’s future low carbon infrastructure.

An estimated £200 billion of new private capital for offshore energy projects is already earmarked and awaiting a green light, the manifesto says. This investment can be deployed across the UK’s energy mix including wind, hydrogen and carbon capture as well as maintaining domestic oil and gas supplies.

The 12-page document sets out how offshore energy has the potential to transform the UK into a world-leading green economy by making the most of the nation’s energy skills, businesses and energy communities.

OEUK represents more than 400 companies of all sizes producing oil, gas, wind and hydrogen energy, carbon capture and the energy supply chain.

With the right government policies and approach, OEUK says these businesses have the potential to:

  • Create a homegrown energy transition that leaves no-one behind
  • Sustain existing jobs while growing the skilled workforce of the future
  • Deliver £200 billion of private investment over the next decade, spurring economic growth and technological innovation
  • Provide half of the UK’s energy needs by 2030 in an uncertain world
  • Meet the UK’s net-zero commitment before 2050

For the offshore energy sector to reach its full potential, the manifesto calls for all parties to support a strategic approach that includes:

  • New partnerships with industry that unlock and enable private investment building on the UK’s existing industrial strengths, skilled people, and world class supply chain
  • A competitive tax regime that provides long term predictability for investment and a fair return, enabling the UK to compete globally for energy investment
  • Embedding a shared set of objectives across all regulators in line with a UK energy policy, delivering an integrated approach to energy, providing project developers greater surety to invest
  • A strategic approach to UK infrastructure including ports, transmission systems, rail networks and the grid
  • An Energy Skills Passport that puts skilled people at the centre of the energy transition, underpinning one workforce that serves the whole of the offshore energy industry in the short term and builds the skilled workforce for the coming decades
  • An independent statutory body to oversee delivery of UK energy and net zero, ensuring the UK delivers on climate goals while successfully tackling energy affordability, security, enduring economic value, and creating high value jobs

David Whitehouse, OEUK chief executive, comments:

“Choosing an energy transition which is homegrown instead of imported has the potential to turbocharge our economy, support jobs, champion our world class supply chain and deliver reliable supplies of cleaner energy in the UK.

“We must get this right. From Shetland to Southampton and everywhere in between, the offshore energy industry has people in every parliamentary constituency around the UK and they have so much to offer. No one must be left behind. We must ensure our energy transition is delivered with people rather than done to them.

“Our plan for a homegrown energy transition shows how, with the right support from all parties, our world class offshore energy industry can remain a national strategic asset and lead the world.

“We are asking all parties and policy makers to forge real partnerships with industry, our communities and our people to unleash our potential and power our future. Let’s choose a homegrown energy transition.”

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