SCOTLAND’S seas will still be producing a million barrels of oil per day by 2035, but only if the industry adapts and creates 10,000 new roles that do not exist today.

Some 40,000 new jobs need to be created in the oil and gas industry, according to the UK Continental Shelf Workforce Dynamics Review carried out by Opito in partnership with Aberdeen-based Robert Gordon University’s (RGU) Oil and Gas Institute.

The report’s main findings are that more that 40,000 people are expected to enter the industry over the next 20 years, including around 10,000 in new areas such as data science, data analytics, robotics, material science, change management and remote operations.

More than 80,000 workers are likely to retire or leave the sector for other reasons by 2035 with the workforce declining by 40,000 overall. Vision 2035 is the UK oil and gas industry’s plan to shape the future of the sector, which by then will be seven decades old.

The report summary states: “Following the downturn between 2014 and 2017, the industry lost over 70,000 direct and indirect jobs (a decline rate of around 10 per cent per year). On the basis that the industry can achieve the goals around Vision 2035 and the wider energy diversification, the industry should be able to sustain over 130,000 roles in 2035, compared to around 170,000 in 2017 (a decline rate of less than 1.5% per year).

The summary adds: “Closer collaboration is required between industry and training providers to up-skill and re-skill the workforce to enhance technology capabilities across the industry.”

Professor Paul de Leeuw, Director of the RGU Oil and Gas Institute, said: “Technology, innovation and the transition to a lower-carbon future will re-shape the sector.

“With over 40,000 people potentially entering the industry over the next 20 years, and with a substantial proportion of the workforce to be up-skilled, there is a critical role for training providers, vocational institutes and universities to help future-proof the sector and to ensure the UK retains its reputation as a leading energy basin.”

Deirdre Michie, chief executive of industry body Oil and Gas UK, said: “I think that one of the great insights in the report is that if we work to one of the scenarios proposed, we will be, in 2035, a 70-year-old industry that is still producing around one million barrels a day.”