Comment: new North Sea licenses and carbon capture and storage plans

Jess Ralston is available for further comment and interview.

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By Jess Ralston

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Commenting on the Government’s announcement about over 100 new North Sea licenses and plans for carbon capture and storage today [1], Jess Ralston, Head of Energy at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) said:

“Government is currently subsidising oil and gas companies to drill more in the North Sea. This will not bring down bills as there isn’t enough gas to move the dial on international market prices and the oil and gas industry’s own estimates show the North Sea will continue to decline no matter what the government policy is.

“Prioritising oil and gas over cheaper renewables and pushing back regulations on insulation in rental homes [2], both of which would bring down bills, is against advice from the International Energy Agency, United Nations and Climate Change Committee. And while carbon capture will be an important technology for some industries, like manufacturing, it’s yet to be seen how much it will cost or where it will be most useful.

“The OBR has warned the UK's heavy gas dependency could see the national debt go up by 13% of GDP as similar gas price crises happen in future.This decision and its timing will also be questioned internationally, as global warming continues to drive extreme weather like heatwaves and wildfires devastating Europe and Canada today.”

Notes to editors:

  1. HM Government: Hundreds of new North Sea oil and gas licences to boost British energy independence and grow the economy
  2. ECIU: Delaying insulation standards could cost private renters £1.4bn:

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