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Environment / EnQuest wants to cut Sullom Voe Terminal emissions by 80 per cent

Sullom Voe Terminal. Photo: BPSullom Voe Terminal. Photo: BP

THE OPERATOR of Sullom Voe Terminal (SVT) is planning to reduce emissions on site by around 80 per cent as it looks to make operations more environmentally friendly.

EnQuest, which took on responsibility for the oil terminal in late 2017, is intending to achieve this in part by reducing the size of its on-site power station.

The company also plans to use imported wind power, suggesting that it may tap into Shetland’s new energy set-up involving large wind farms like Viking Energy and the subsea transmission link to the mainland – if they go ahead.

The terminal is currently powered by an on-site gas power station, which also pumps electricity into the local grid.

Figures from environmental agency SEPA show that in 2018 the terminal power station emitted 206,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, with SVT itself releasing 54,000 tonnes.

These figures were a reduction on those for the previous year.

EnQuest’s pledge to cut its emissions at SVT over the long-term were included in the company’s recently published 2019 annual report, but the company declined to comment any further.

“At the Sullom Voe Terminal, the group’s transformation programme includes plans to reduce emissions by approximately 80 per cent by materially reducing the size of the onsite power plant and importing wind powered energy to meet the terminal’s future needs,” it said.

“The group will continue to report its greenhouse gas emissions as required.”

Last week energy regulator Ofgem confirmed it was minded to approve a 600MW transmission link connecting Shetland to the national grid, on the condition that there is evidence by the end of the year that the proposed 103-turbine Viking Energy wind farm will go ahead.

A revised needs case submitted by SSE for the £632 million cable showed that there was also a possible future demand of up to 200MW of power from oil and gas platforms west of Shetland.

Energy operators have been looking into ways of using ‘greener’ energy to power oil platforms.

Reducing CO2 emissions at Sullom Voe Terminal and the port of Sullom Voe, meanwhile, is a key component of a new blueprint for the future of Shetland’s energy sector.

The objectives are part of the council-led Shetland Energy Hub project, which aims to prolong activity in the local oil and gas sector while at the same time integrate the move towards low carbon solutions and renewable energy.

EnQuest confirmed this week that it plans to cut 530 roles in its North Sea operations to cut costs in response to the low oil price.