Natural gas a ‘partner’ in transition to renewables, says Crogga

Natural gas a ‘partner’ in transition to renewables, says Crogga

Gas extracted from Manx territorial waters could “partner” with renewable projects in the island’s transition to lower emissions, a firm has said.

In December, Crogga was given more time to explore sites across a potential gas reserve off Maughold Head, which has angered climate change activists.

CEO Diccen Sargent said natural gas would work alongside green energy to provide “a stable electricity supply”.

The government has committed to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Mr Sargent said in order to “take coal out of generation” the island would “need to replace that with something”, and it could not be done solely with renewable energy.

“We want to get rid of coal and oil in heating and we want to electrify transport, which means we need to massively grow our electricity consumption,” he said.

Natural gas would be “the partner” that “works with renewables to provide us with a stable electricity supply”, he added.

The four-month licence extension would give the government time to consider its stance on offshore energy ahead of any long-term decision, Infrastructure Minister Tim Crookall said.

However, climate change activists argue the move is at odds with the island’s green commitments.

Phil Matthews from the Isle of Man Green Party said said the move “goes completely against” the island’s Unesco biosphere status, Climate Change Act, and international obligations under the Paris Agreement.

“We’re hoping this is put to bed because this doesn’t feature in this next stage of transition,” he said.

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