Oil and Gas Industry — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 12:55 pm on 9 October 2018.

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Photo of John McNally John McNally Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Environment) 12:55, 9 October 2018

I thank the Minister for his kind and generous comments. All Members have been supportive of the debate. Many points were made about how vital this industry is to the economy in the transition to renewable and sustainable energy in the future. We are all agreed that we need a stable regime in place so that we are all aware of what will happen for the future of the industry. The points made about short-termism were excellent. We seem to have been practising short-termism for decade after decade, and that has to stop.

I particularly liked the emphasis on safety in the North sea and on how important it is to retain skilled, clever and well-trained workers. I was not actually around at the time of the Piper Alpha disaster—I was running businesses at the time the news started to come out. I was terrified, as everyone else was, and I read the papers and listened to the news to find out whose friend or relative had been killed and who had been injured. The long-term consequences of that disaster, such as post-traumatic stress, are still going on today. That should never be allowed to happen as long as we are in charge of safety, so the emphasis on safety is appreciated.

The need for a collaborative approach has been well versed. We are all singing from the same hymn sheet. We might want to get there in different ways, but I think we are all trying to get to exactly the same place. I am very appreciative of that.

Good and interesting observations were made during the debate, which showed a good understanding of local and global issues and of the importance of the sector, in particular to our constituents and the businesses in our constituencies, including all the support industries. The basic thing that most people like in their life is stability and an understanding of where the future is going. I hope the Chancellor and the Government have listened to the points made today. We need certainty of policy and of investment—everyone present agrees that that is what needs to happen. I am extremely happy with the debate.

Question put and agreed to.


That this House
has considered the future of the oil and gas industry.