30 April 2012
Deepwater and Arctic Oil Drilling
This note outlines several examples of how previously inaccessible sources of hydrocarbons are now starting to be exploited. It covers deepwater drilling, drilling in the Arctic Circle, and potential future exploitation of methane hydrates. It also outlines the UK regulatory regime, which is probably second only to the Norwegian system. The Environmental Audit Committee is currently conducting an inquiry into the protection of the Arctic. This will consider Arctic drilling; a recent report by Lloyd's has highlighted the potential for increased exploration in that region as sea ice retreats and oil prices rise.