Call for more gas use

August 24, 2000, 13:30 CEST

Norway must greatly increase gas utilisation, according to the Miljøsok council report submitted to petroleum and energy minister Olav Akselsen on 23 August.

Stig Bergseth, senior vice president for health, the environment and safety in Statoil, has chaired the Miljøsok council. This collaboration between Norwegian offshore operators and the government has focused on meeting environmental challenges.

Miljøsok has not joined the debate about building gas-fired power stations, Mr Bergseth says. But all members of the council support the recommendation that Norwegian industry should exploit gas as a resource in the future.

Miljøsok also proposes an increased technological commitment to cut costs for reducing emissions. It also calls for the petroleum industry and the authorities to give priority to developing better methods for utilising carbon dioxide.

The government and oil companies are urged to cooperate in establishing a policy framework which will promote an appropriate environmental commitment.

The report states that this applies both to defining emission curbs and to a future emission trading system.

According to Mr Bergseth, work in Miljøsok has been demanding.

"But the broad agreement that has been achieved gives a good basis for continued efforts to meet the environmental challenges facing the Norwegian oil and gas industry," he concludes.

Miljøsok's work will be continued by the Norwegian Oil Industry Association (OLF).