The move follows an announcement today (Thursday 9 August) by energy Minister, Paul Wheelhouse, of a further £5m for the fund.
Last year the DCF awarded grants totalling £4.8m for projects that strengthen Scotland’s decommissioning capacity.
These included more than £800,000 for infrastructure upgrades at Kishorn Dry Dock in Wester Ross, by owners Kishorn Port Ltd. The Lyness Oil and Gas decommissioning base in Orkney, a project by Orkney Islands Council, received more than £90,000 for work at the Lyness quayside and surrounding area. And almost £60,000 was invested in feasibility studies commissioned by Stornoway Port Authority for the proposed decommissioning facility at Arnish on Lewis.
More than £118,000 went to the upgrading of plant and machinery by EMN Plant Ltd, and skills development, at the Shetland Specialist Decommissioning service. And Lerwick Engineering and Fabrication Ltd received more than £80,000 for the purchase of equipment to enhance capabilities within the decom market in Shetland.
Gavin MacKay, HIE’s head of energy industries, said:
“The decommissioning of North Sea infrastructure is already presenting opportunities for the Highlands and Islands. The obvious example is the Buchan Alpha decommissioning, which is being being carried out at Dales Voe in Shetland, following major upgrading of the quayside.
“There are many more such opportunities expected in the years ahead. It’s important that our infrastructure and supply chain companies are well-placed to benefit from these and that’s what the DCF is intended for.
“We would encourage all companies across the energy sector supply chain who are involved or planning to be involved in decommissioning related projects, to consider a DCF application.”
This is the third round of the DCF. The fund will continue to support infrastructure upgrades at Scotland’s ports, innovation in retrieval and transport approaches, and supply chain projects that strengthen Scotland’s decommissioning capabilities and capacities.
The fund can also support engineering scoping work, feasibility studies and business development at key sites to help to attract further private investment.
Alongside the Decommissioning Action Plan, launched by HIE and Scottish Enterprise at the end of 2016, the DCF will help Scotland’s oil and gas sector make the most of decommissioning opportunities at home and abroad.