A low-carbon future for The North Sea Basin

David G. Quirk*, John R. Underhill, Jon G. Gluyas, Matthew J. Howe, Hamish A. M. Wilson, Sean Anderson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

5 Citations (Scopus)


Human emissions of greenhouse gases have caused a predictable rise of 1.2 °C in global temperatures. Over the last 70 years, the rise has occurred at a geologically unprecedented speed and scale. To avoid a worsening situation, most developed nations are turning to renewable sources of power to meet their climate commitments, including the UK, Norway, Denmark and The Netherlands. The North Sea basin offers many advantages in the transition from fossil fuels by virtue of its natural resources, physical setting, offshore infrastructure and skilled workforce. Nonetheless, the magnitude of the up-front costs and the scale required to achieve net zero emissions are rarely acknowledged. In addition, some of the technologies being planned are commercially immature. In particular, the current cost of the capture, transport and disposal of carbon dioxide is problematic as a large-scale solution to industrial emissions. Repurposing the North Sea to meet a low-carbon future will require substantial collaboration between governments and industrial sectors. There are nonetheless significant opportunities for companies prepared to switch from the traditional oil and gas business to renewable energy production and other sustainable activities.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCross-Border Themes in Petroleum Geology I
Subtitle of host publicationThe North Sea
PublisherGeological Society of London
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781786204578
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Publication series

NameGeological Society Special Publication
ISSN (Print)0305-8719

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Geology


Dive into the research topics of 'A low-carbon future for The North Sea Basin'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this