A new steering group consisting of offshore companies has been appointed to harness the potential of remaining gas reserves in the Southern North Sea (SNS).

Named as SNS Rejuvenation Special Interest Group, the new group is part of an initiative launched by the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA), Oil & Gas UK and the East of England Energy Group (EEEGR).

Members of the group are Shell, Oranje-Nassau Energie, Premier Oil, ENGIE E&P UK, Centrica, ODE, Aker Solutions, James Fisher & Sons, DNVGL, Sembmarine SLP, Baker Hughes, Lloyds Register, Fraser Well Management, Acteon, SSE and Statoil.

The new group is scheduled to hold its first meeting in December, and its work could help secure the future of offshore oil and gas industry in the East of England for more than two decades.

The group will look to maximise economic recovery (MER) of gas reserves by identifying new locations and assessing their potentialities for carboniferous gas reserves.

It will also try to streamline processes to reduce the costs of exploration and production.

Oil and Gas UK chief executive Deirdre Michie said: “Oil and Gas UK recognises the key role that the SNS gasfields play for UKPLC and we are keen to ensure that our members play a major part in ensuring the future role of these important assets for the nation for generations to come.”

"This could assist in securing the future of our industry for the region."

EEEGR chief executive Simon Gray added: “EEEGR is delighted to be working with the OGA and Oil and Gas UK in this vital piece of work. This could assist in securing the future of our industry for the region, protecting jobs and making sure that businesses in our region continue to reap the benefits of this industry.

“We will be providing the secretariat for the SIG and organising events that stem from the work streams that the SIG identifies.”

The SIG was launched by Eric Marston, Southern North Sea and Morecambe Bay manager for the OGA at EEEGR’s House of Commons reception in October.

Formed in April 2015, the Oil and Gas Authority seeks to maximise economic recovery of UK the Continental Shelf (UKCS) oil and gas reserves in line with the findings of the Wood Review.

Image: Deirdre Michie, chief executive of Oil & Gas UK, on a visit to the East of England earlier this year with the Est of England energy Group chair Patrick Phelan, left, and chief executive Simon Gray. Photo: courtesy of EEEGR.