Offshore natural gas storage and liquefied natural gas import facilities: a consultation

Starting Date: 24-11-06

Closing Date: 16-02-07

This consultation is closely linked to a number of other consultations that were proposed in the Energy Review report:  The Energy Challenge, published in July 2006.  The measures set out in the report help to take forward our commitment to meeting the two major long-term challenges in UK energy policy:

  • tackling climate change by reducing carbon dioxide emissions; and
  • delivering secure, clean energy at affordable prices, as we move towards increasing dependence on imported energy.

The consultations will help formulate our position on a range of energy issues to be published in the Energy White Paper in 2007.

The Government is considering legislating to establish a clear regulatory framework for the offshore storage of natural gas in non-hydrocarbon features such as salt caverns, as well as in partially depleted oil and gas fields.  New legislation would also provide for the unloading of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) offshore.  A clear framework will ensure that the market is better able to provide the infrastructure facilities that can make a major contribution to secure gas supplies for all consumers.

The Government considers that these changes will bring clarity to the current offshore arrangements, which do not explicitly provide for the range of gas infrastructure that the market is seeking to develop.

A preliminary consultation was carried out through the DEFRA Marine Bill consultation, which closed on 23 June 2006.  This consultation seeks views on the more detailed policy options that the DTI is considering.

Consultation Documents

Consultation Responses