Offshore Energy Exhibition & Conference brings you a series of columns in which prominent industry representatives share their views on key developments in the offshore oil, gas and energy markets. In this edition, Bart van de Leemput (Managing Director Nederlandse Aardolie Maatschappij (NAM)) shares his view on maintaining natural gas production in the North Sea.
Maintaining natural gas production in the North Sea for years to come, that is the challenge facing oil and gas industries. NAM has been active for decades in the North Sea and has no desire to slow down. However, this is not as easy as it sounds. There has been a steady reduction in gas field production throughout the years and a large number of gas fields are slowly but surely becoming empty, which in turn is raising the cost of gas per cubic meter. At some time in the future, a point will be reached where gas production will stop being economically attractive. We looked at a few options and have chosen to accept the challenges and remain active in the North Sea in a safe and cost-effective way.
In the search for solutions, NAM works very closely with other parties. Partnerships are crucial in this industry. Next to the practical and financial advantages, collaboration is also crucial in maintaining our so-called License to Operate in the North Sea. Most believe that there is still a strong future for this industry. However, other parties want to be active in the same limited space in the North Sea. If the collective industry wants to be active for a longer period of time, good collaboration with several other players and stakeholders will be needed. As part of the collective gas industry, NAM is convinced that natural gas can contribute to the Dutch energy mix. Natural gas will continue to play an important role. It is the cleanest of all fossil fuels and can be a good alternative to the irregularity of solar and wind energy.
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Press Release, August 27, 2012