Encore oil have announced the biggest oil discovery the North Sea has witnessed for over a decade.

The Catcher field could contain up to 300 million barrels of oil and would make it the largest discovery in the North Sea since the one-billion barrel Buzzard field was found in 2001.

EnCore said it plans to drill one further well to see if there are further reserves in the field, which will take up to another 15 days.

Encore's chief executive Alan Booth said the company's Catcher drilling programme had so far delivered a 'truly exceptional result'.

He added: 'Initial analysis of the seismic data, now calibrated by drilling, suggests that block 28/9 could possibly contain a series of discoveries that would form one of the larger North Sea oil accumulations of recent years.'

Shares in EnCore, which owns 15% of the project, shot up 49% to 53¼p.

Nautical Petroleum, also owning 15%, gained 41p to 180p, while Premier Oil (35%) rose 104p to 1286p.

The other owners are German oil group Wintershall (20%) and Lord Rothschild's oil interests Agora Oil & Gas (15%).

More here



# mato21 2010-06-28 18:47
Would someone care to remind us what it was Andy Kerr was going on about last week wasn't it oil?
# Robabody 2010-06-28 19:19
Oh no, I wish they'd stop doing that - finding oil I mean - it just means I'll be getting poorer and I'll have even more "uncle toms" telling me that I'm too wee, to stupid and too poor to aspire to anything else but a life by the begging bowl
# RobQos 2010-06-28 19:39
Whatever we do let's make sure that we continue to leave all decisions on Scottish oil and all our other resources to an institution where Scotland has an 8% say in what happens.

If by some unfortunate coincidence Scottish people end up having some say in what happens to it we should not do something silly like start an oil fund. Look how that is turning out for Norway. It would be a disaster for communities all accross Scotland to have £200 billion invested. We are much better contributing our money to Westminsters black hole of debt. Lets keep spending our money on centralisation, over-governance, nukes, endless war and trying to retain even a semblance of past Brit Empire.
# Roll_On_2011 2010-06-28 20:41
Much play is put on oil, but there are also two new kids on the block:

1 Scotland plugs into Forth coal:

Fife-based Thornton New Energy has gone into partnership with an Australian company to extract energy from coal seams lying deep under the estuary inaccessible to conventional mining techniques.

Company spokesman Alan Borrowman said: "This is the best coal in Europe in terms of quality and where it lies. There is a huge amount of coal down there which you can't get at by opencasting or deep mining.

Underground Coal Gasification is the best way to get at it and we know the technology works, it is already in use in other countries. There is enough coal under the Firth of Forth to provide the energy needs of Scotland for the next 150 years."
# Roll_On_2011 2010-06-28 20:43
2 How wind, tide and wave could power Scotland seven times over:

The windfall in Scotland's grasp from offshore renewable energy has been unveiled for the first time in a major new report that reveals it could power the country seven times over within four decades.

Value of offshore renewable energy is revealed:

The report said wind and wave power could generate the same amount of electricity as is currently achieved by North Sea oil and gas production.
# GrassyKnollington 2010-06-28 21:13
Oh this is grim. Coupled with that 1.3 billion budgetary surplus, we might as well throw in the towel.

Time for a "hospital infection/Salmond caught eating large pie/Trump ate my sand dune and then laughed in my face" distraction story.
# Roll_On_2011 2010-06-29 06:47
Quoting GrassyKnollingt on:
Oh this is grim. Coupled with that 1.3 billion budgetary surplus, we might as well throw in the towel.

Have just read this article from the Herald:


Professors Andrew Hughes Hallett and Drew Scott warned that recommendations in the Calman commission may lead to a 25% cut in spending, lost income tax revenue and an inability to use higher VAT to compensate.

The academics, of Edinburgh and St Andrews universities, said findings by the commission - set up by Unionist political parties to enhance devolution - will have a "more severe" effect in Scotland than in other parts of the UK.

Instead, they support the Campaign for Fiscal Responsibility, launched this month with a call for Scottish ministers to control taxes, social welfare and have borrowing powers within the UK, stopping short of independence.

After analysing Scotland's public finances, the pair said: "It is difficult to believe that some of Scotland's politicians and sections of business community are ready to endorse a financing arrangement that is virtually certain to impose on Scotland a scale of fiscal cuts that no other part of the UK will experience.

Calman will have a "more severe" effect in Scotland than in other parts of the UK.

Aye Grassy, it’s a damn big ‘bath towel’!
# Clare 2010-06-29 08:35
Grassy, you are a loon! : )
# springy 2010-06-29 08:44
The BBC had a Trump story on the front page of the website earlier.
Are you mystic meg grassy?
# mato21 2010-06-28 21:19
Grassy Don't worry I can hear them ringing up their contacts as we speak
# springy 2010-06-28 21:36
Had a wee look at the P&J to see if they had anything on the oil discovery and they had, together with a quote from a Labour MSP.
I also caught this editorial about minimum pricing and it's a belter.

Any chance of a competition to find the most ridiculously worded opinion piece?
# RTP 2010-06-29 07:54
I read the P&J everyday and this piece is not the worst that they have used I think sometimes they try to outdo the other press and TV in their anti SNP.A good read is the Energy supplement you get on a Monday.
# mato21 2010-06-28 22:02
Newsnight going on NHS and Englands disallowed goal no mention of new oil find!Why
# john__ 2010-06-29 07:49
I swore at the telly last night when newsnight (NB) reported on Angus MacNeill's support of goalline technology. Apparently his support could only a result of Ireland being knocked out due to an unseen handball.

Snide wee comments like this unfortunately are a staple of political coverage in this country.

# m4rkyboy 2010-06-28 23:08
Imagine the Scotland we could create and the pride that would instill in everyone.(sigh)
# Lian 2010-06-28 23:32
Och, it just makes you mad.
# JRTomlin 2010-06-29 00:39
Well, you know Scots shouldn't depend on oil because it is going to run out any second now.

And if it doesn't there is no doubt that Scotland would spend the money on stupid things like care for the elderly and roads and bridges and an oil fund.

Silly Scots.
# Roll_On_2011 2010-06-29 06:12
Sorry if this is a wee bit off topic but I feel it is a fairly significant event for Scotland.

Does anybody remember this event from last November?

Edinburgh based British-Irish Council Secretariat opposed by Hain.

Moves to establish a permanent secretariat in Edinburgh for the British-Irish Council failed yesterday due to the opposition of the British government representative, secretary of state for Wales Peter Hain.

The council was set up under the Belfast Agreement of 1998 and comprises representatives from the British and Irish governments, the devolved institutions of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and the British crown dependencies of the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey.

Well it appears that this decision has been reversed by the ConDem government, but the event has slipped under the radar as far as the Scottish ‘dead tree press’ and our ‘alleged’ impartial BBC are concerned.

I first noticed the event here:

British Irish Council has decided to base its secretariat in Edinburgh. You may have missed this - BBC Scotland thought a butcher in England selling python deserved far more attention on its evening news radio show, Drivetime, on Friday.

There was no explanation on why the last Labour government at Westminster blocked the council from coming to Scotland, despite that being the wish of the majority of its members, who represent the governments of Northern Ireland, Eire, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands, Wales, Scotland and the UK. Nor will you find much analysis - anywhere - on why the new coalition government's change of heart is significant.

After scouring the Scottish press I only found the one mention of the change of events:

And that did not stay up for long!

But alas, as others have said, the Scottish meeja appears to have a pre-prepared pile of ‘SNP bad news’ to paper over the ‘SNP good news’.
# RobQos 2010-06-29 13:24
Thanks for the update. Amazing news! No quotes from Labour on the story I see!

Can we get the decision on the BP headquarters reversed now as well? Yet another Labour anti-Scottish maneuver of the recent past.
# Somerled 2010-06-29 07:39
Back to the North Sea and the Catcher Field.
This discovery is very good news for the whole of the United Kingdom. In the business section of "The Telegraph" today there is a list of the major stakeholders in this field.There may be Scottish individuals who are sherholders in some of the companies involved but none of these companies could be called Scottish. We can not talk about "Scotland's Oil" unless there are Scottish companies who are involved,using Scottish capital.The Oil business is a global industry as evidenced by Scottish companies like the Wood Group who operate world wide.
# eye_write 2010-06-29 08:48
No, nonsense. It is Scotland's oil because it is in Scotland's waters. We speak about South Africa's diamonds, America's oil, Kuwait's oil! Wood Group's headquarters are in Aberdeen. End of. Coca cola and Macdonalds operate worldwide, perhaps they are not US companies?

This is typical doublespeak from union devotees that cannot see past the UK as having a devine right to anything and everything on these islands. Nope. It is as corrupt as hell, so I'm sorry, get real. It's a con, for the self-serving Brits (pro-union political class in Britain).

Of course it's good news for the UK as a whole, it's bankrupt!
# eye_write 2010-06-29 08:55
I'm sorry, I can't get over how much rubbish your post is! Take that logic and apply it to any other countries' assets? "They aren't your own you see because you operate in a global market"! Do you believe this stuff from the Brits? Is it because of an emotional attachment to Britain that leads you to? It's crazy...

Why do we Scots in all the countries in the world have to believe it? (If I said it about UK assets in a Euro context, would you be OK with that? - assuming there was a shared sovereignty thing going on with the EU and so the "UK's" oil wasn't the UK's, it was Europe's?) I get fed up when we are continually insulted and presented with this stuff/guff. Please give us some credit for brains. Thanks :-)

It's just so blinkered towards Britain's divinity it's unbelievable. Britain is a politically constructed state, if it doesn't work, then it falls. But the Brits put no effort into making it work, no federal system, no fiscal autonomy, just propaganda rot like this, that some obviously buy into!, to brainwash and belittle the partner nations into staying in an obviously net negative set up.

The British ruling class are nothing but nasty little con merchants. They do not deserve to be in charge.
# Clare 2010-06-29 09:33
Somerled I will grant we are part of the UK right now but North Sea oil comes under the heading of our contribution to the UK economy. It is in Scottish waters and therefore very much Scotland's in the same way the assets of other countries are theirs. The scale of our contribution to the UK economy, remember, was so great that successive governments sought to keep the figures hidden for many, many years. Well, I mean, if the truth got out we couldn't be daily beaten about the head and reminded any more about how we are being "kept" and "carried" by the rest of the UK.
# Holebender 2010-06-29 13:24
I work for an American-based company which supplies expertise to an American oil company in Angola. For some strange reason everybody thinks the oil is Angolan because that is where the fields are situated. Could you offer an explanation for this curious notion?
# m4rkyboy 2010-06-29 18:02
The oil is in Scottish waters,governed by Scottish law and levied by Westminster(ene rgy was not devolved).If Scotland was independent then the tax would go to Edinburgh and we would be rich.Some hardcore nationalists might even argue for oil to be nationalised like in venezuela.
# mato21 2010-06-29 09:49
Not a word to be heard in the news nor any report in the press that I can find.Are you certain this is not a figment of our imagination and its not being reported to save embarrassing us Strange outcome to such important news
Oh I forgot failure is considered more important English football team
Have decided another copmlaint to the BBC is in order
# Somerled 2010-06-29 11:10
This oilfield happens to be in that part of the North Sea assigned to the Scottish part of the United Kingdom It was found and will be exploited by international companies and sold on the World market in exactly the same way that we get a lot of our fuel from overseas.My point is that we cannot truly call it "Scotland's Oil" because it will be used globally. I expect you are too young to remember the attempt by a previous Labour Government to take North Sea Oil under State control when they formed BritOil with its headquarters in Glasgow.That sorry episode ended in tears and any further attempt ot "beat the market" would also fail.
# Holebender 2010-06-29 13:32
Rubbish! There was no attempt to nationalise the oil. Britoil was a state-run company, but the setup was never like it is in Norway and many other places where the state-run company is an automatic majority partner in every field. Britoil was simply one of many oil companies working in the North Sea, and it just happened to be a state-run company.

It was no different from the state-run company which is running one of the rail franchises while all the others are in private hands.
# springy 2010-06-29 11:49
Quoting Somerled:
This oilfield happens to be in that part of the North Sea assigned to the Scottish part of the United Kingdom.

In other words Scotland, ergo it is Scottish.
Why is it even simple unambiguous statements of fact cause unionists to twist, meander and contrive?
The new field is in Scottish waters, whether we remain part of the UK or not it is a simple statement of fact.
# Holebender 2010-06-29 13:33
Indeed. Scottish continental shelf under Scottish legal jurisdiction.
# Embradon 2010-06-29 12:52
The news of the discovery was reported in the Irish Independent. A small dismissive item appeared in the North Briton but no mention as far as I can see in the Herald or the BBC. Presumably the Unionist mouthpieces are trying to find a way to spin the news that Scotland has just become 300 million barrels poorer as oil revenue at volatile prices is so economically dangerous.
# Somerled 2010-06-29 13:21
Look at the "Telegraph" to-day. This find is widely reported in it's business section.
# eye_write 2010-06-29 17:41
The Telegraph - sigh! :-)
# EdinScot 2010-06-29 13:33
Silene from the Unionist media about the discovery of over 300 million barrels of oil in Scottish waters. The massive cuts are coming from Westminster sometime soon. Life in Scotland today is surreal and bizzare to say the least.
# Somerled 2010-06-29 14:26
My memory let me down a bit earlier on. The company before Britoil was The British National Oil Corporation (BNOC)
set up by Tony Benn as a nationalised company to teach "the Capitalists" how to run an oil company. Well he sure did that all right.
# 1scot 2010-06-29 19:13
Quoting Somerled:
My memory let me down a bit earlier on. The company before Britoil was The British National Oil Corporation (BNOC)
set up by Tony Benn as a nationalised company to teach "the Capitalists" how to run an oil company. Well he sure did that all right.

Somerled, you should try some historical reading before coming on this honest site spouting nonsense.
Maggie Snatcher knew that uk was bankrupt withoutSCOTTISH OILso try reading before spouting. No pun intended.
# Somerled 2010-06-29 14:35
I take it by your "nom de plume" that you are a Directional Drilling Engineer working in Angola. Do you get much opportunity to talk to many Angolans to find out what benefits they are getting from their oil.
# eye_write 2010-06-29 17:42
So if it's not OK in Angola...??!
# 1scot 2010-06-29 19:16
Are you serious when you say that the Herald has nothing about this finding?
When are they being presented with their red top.
I stopped buying that chip wrapper a long time ago. Shame that great writers like Iain Bell cannot find an alternative, as there is none.
# m4rkyboy 2010-06-29 19:50

No mention of Scotland of the north sea anywhere
# Somerled 2010-06-29 19:23
Are you trying to ask a question or make an exclaimation ? In either case I don't get it. Could you explain a bit more clearly please ?
# eye_write 2010-06-29 21:02
Hi Somerled

Were you implying that the situation in Angola does not benefit Angolans? I thought you were (if not I stand corrected). I also assumed you feel that is wrong? If so, then how can you feel that way over Angolans and not feel exactly the same about Scots?

Because having oil has not benefited Scots, we would have had "embarrassing" surpluses, said McCrone, we could have chosen to have an oil fund like Norway...we have produced as much oil as Kuwait, look at it (similar population 2 million v 5, compared to 60-70 in UK etc.).

The oil has been used as a revenue stream to plug successive gaps in the UK's finances, while it pours money into Trident, Irag and Afghanistan...and I doubt Scotland would have, going by public opinion.

Scotland has voted differently than our next door neighbour in (is it?) every election since...well for as long, so as we would have had a different colour of government, yet the majority of ten to one outranks us every time. It means my kids would have effectively no vote in these elections. That's not acceptable to me, and not acceptable in a western country in 2010.
# Somerled 2010-06-29 19:28
What I said is totally true.The British National Oil Corporation was set up by Tony Benn in the late 1970's and the headquarters were on St.Vincent Street,Glasgow. I suggest you do some historical reading for your own good.
# Independista 2010-06-30 00:33
You miss the point many of the posters above are trying to make. It matters not a whit who owns the shares in Encore or any other oil exploration company (apart from the fact that it would be nice for Scottish shareholders if they had invested in them) as the real benefit accrue from the tax take to the Government of the country where the oil field is located. Until Scotland is independent, all the tax goes to the UK treasury- and has done so to Scotland's detriment for the past 30 years. We are the only country to have discovered oil and find ourselves poorer. Do you like it that way?
# Roll_On_2011 2010-06-30 07:35

Are you a ‘full shilling’? It is nothing to do with owner-ship but everything to do with Licensing and Taxation.

One industry expert predicted that the Encore Oil find, alone, would also deliver a £2billion boost to the Treasury.

I wonder if you have the nous to tell us where the Treasury is located, my guess is it’s not in Scotland.
# Roll_On_2011 2010-06-30 07:36
Firms rush to find new oil fields in North Sea.

Energy Minister Charles Hendry yesterday revealed bids for 356 blocks in the 26th licensing round for offshore exploration.

This is the largest number since the first licensing round in 1964 saw 394 blocks requested.

The 25th round attracted bids for 277 blocks.

The news is a major boost for the North Sea industry, as firms gear up to hunt for new oil and gas finds.

The news is a major boost for the North Sea industry, as firms gear up to hunt for new oil and gas finds.
It came on the same day EnCore Oil confirmed that fields in the Catcher area in the central North Sea could contain a huge find which one industry expert predicted would also deliver a £2billion boost to the Treasury.

It was also added that:

“The opportunities for further exploration and development are vast, with up to 24billion barrels of oil and gas remaining beneath our seabed.
# rodmac 2010-06-30 12:36
On the question of Exploration rights...A lot of people will not be aware, that in the previous round of areas being given for exploration licence, around 6-9 months before the last election. Labour did NOT allow the area West of the Hebrides to be included.
Now to many, they will say, so what??? The Oil is in the North Sea, and possibly some more near the shetlands.
However, around 2 years ago, a geologist working for a french firm had been doing pre soundings West of the Hebrides. His comment when asked why there??? He said that they had identified what appeared to be an area which if proved by exploration, appears to Dwarf the entirety of What has already been found to date in the North sea!!!
Question being.... Why did the Labour Government deny an exploration licence for that area???
I have my own thoughts on that question!!

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