Dutch advisory body wants more info on Groningen closure

The government decided to cut production after residents blamed hydraulic fracturing for damage to buildings in the area. It was decided earlier to schedule the field’s closing for 2030 while progressively reducing production, after a 3.4 magnitude earthquake occurred near the field last year. The field is operated by Nam, a joint venture established by oil supermajors Royal Dutch Shell and ExxonMobil.

July 5, 2019

Dutch advisory body Council of State’s Administrative Jurisdiction Division (Adj) Wednesday requested from the government further explanation for the closing of a major onshore field, Kallanish Energy learns.

The Groningen field is the largest in Europe. The government decided to cut production after residents blamed hydraulic fracturing for damage to buildings in the area.

It was decided earlier to schedule the field’s closing for 2030 while progressively reducing production, after a 3.4 magnitude earthquake occurred near the field last year.

Adj asked minister of Economic Affairs and Climate Change Eric Wiebes for more explanation on why operations could not be halted earlier.

“The minister has not made clear what efforts are possible at what costs to reduce gas demand from industrial bulk consumers, greenhouse horticulture and gas exports more quickly,” the council said, in a statement.

Reuters reported the Dutch government has been citing security of supply as the main reason to keep production up for another decade.

Last month, the government said the output would decrease 20% more than previously announced, reaching 452 billion cubic feet (Bcf) in 2019-2020.

It reached peak production in 2013, with 1.9 trillion cubic feet (Tcf).

The field is operated by Nam, a joint venture established by oil supermajors Royal Dutch Shell and ExxonMobil.

SOURCE

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