Britain’s offshore oil and gas production rose by more than 4percent in 2018, according to the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA), averaging 1.7 MMboe/d.
The OGA now expects total output across the sector during period 2016-2050 to be 3.9 Bboe higher than in projections issued in March 2015.
Compared with the forecast last year, it added, this is equivalent to a further four years of production from the UK’s currently largest producing oil field.
Last year’s total oil production was up by 8.9percent on the previous year and represented the highest UK oil production rate since 2011.
This is due to a combination of more than 30 new fields coming onstream since 2015, generally improved production efficiency and asset integrity, implementation of enhanced oil recovery projects and the focus of UK offshore licensing rounds on exploration, appraisal, and development commitments.
Other findings of the ‘Projections of UK Oil and Gas Production and Expenditure Report’ report showed that total opex across the sector rose by 6.4percent due to higher activity.
Also decommissioning expenditure rose by 9percent last year to £1.45 billion ($1.89 billion), reflecting the higher level of activity taking place. The projection for 2019-2023 estimates total costs 18percenr lower than in last year’s assessment.
Loraine Pace, head of Performance, Planning and Reporting at the OGA, said that recent large UK offshore gas discoveries such as Glendronach and Glengorm highlighted the future potential of the basin. This could be boosted further by new investment, exploration successes, and resource progression.
“The OGA continually supports industry in efforts to revitalize exploration, through Area Plans and promoting new technologies,” she added.