Chinese offshore oil & gas operator CNOOC plans to use renewable electricity transmitted from shore to help power its operations.

The replacement by green electricity is a key solution for the company to cut carbon emissions from its offshore oil and gas operations, the company said in its 2022 Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) report.

The report said that the company would establish a land-sea integrated power supply network within three years to power offshore oil and gas operations in the Bohai Bay, offshore northern China.

In 2023, the company plans to replace 500 million kWh of electricity with green power through the existing onshore grid that links to offshore platforms at Bohai Bay.

The scheme “is expected to reduce indirect carbon emissions by about 442,000 tonnes this year”, the report said.

Last year, the company switched the power supply at the Qinhuangdao 32-6 oilfield complex at the Bohai Bay to the onshore grid.

The Qinhuangdao oil complex last year used 186 million kWh of green electricity from the onshore grid, which is equivalent to reducing 164,500 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.

Houston-based independent ConocoPhillips last year signed an agreement with CNOOC to develop an offshore wind farm to supply green power for oil production at the Penglai oilfield at Bohai Bay.

With four wind turbines with a total installed capacity of 34MW, the wind farm will tie back to the existing central processing platform via subsea cables, distributing energy to the field’s power grid system.

At full capacity, the wind farm will have the potential to meet more than 30% of the power needed for Penglai’s operations and achieve tens of thousands of tonnes of annual carbon dioxide reductions.

The company now owns and operates 980 MW of onshore power generation capacity along the coast of Bohai Bay.

Including other schemes to reduce emissions, CNOOC Ltd is targeting to reduce 577,000 tonnes of CO2 this year.

Bohai Bay has emerged as a bulwark in the country’s effort to prevent oil and gas production from depleting too quickly.

The sea area holds 4.4 billion tonnes (about 32.3 billion barrels) of potential oil reserves and 500 billion cubic metres of gas in place.

CNOOC operates dozens of fields at Bohai Bay, holding total acreage of 77,000 square kilometres.

Last year, CNOOC produced 233 million barrels of crude from Bohai, making it the country’s largest production area, outperforming the flagship onshore giant Daqing field.

This article was published first by Upstream