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Greg Gordon

This chapter will outline the development of British hydrocarbon law and policy and offer some critical comment relative thereto. Focusing primarily upon the offshore industry, it will chart the evolution of British oil and gas law and policy; discuss the manner in which the state organizes its governance of the upstream oil and gas sector; outline the extent of British governmental participation; note the absence, in Britain, of oil funds; explain the extent and basis of the direct state take from upstream activities; and consider the means by which the British government seeks to encourage investment on the UK Continental Shelf.

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Greg Gordon and John Paterson

This chapter begins by setting out the UK’s idiosyncratic constitutional arrangements (uncodified constitution, devolution) before considering the country’s evolving energy situation (from net exporter to import dependence, increasing role of renewables). Petroleum licensing arrangements are then considered, with particular attention paid to the discretionary nature of the system, the evolution of licensing forms, the emergent role of the Oil and Gas Authority and the concept of Maximising Economic Recovery, and the transformations under way in the context of the UK’s exit from the EU. Whilst the focus is on the offshore area, onshore arrangements for shale gas are also discussed.

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Raphael Heffron, Mohammad Hazrati, Greg Gordon and Darren McCauley

The societal context in which the system for managing UK petroleum resources developed is analysed in this chapter. The chapter describes British society in terms of its economy, resources and politics and the related consequences for the UK energy sector, with a focus on the UK oil and gas sector. In addition, there is coverage of the different institutions that relate to the oil and gas industry. Finally, there is a brief analysis of some of the early issues that may result from Brexit and may also affect the UK oil and gas sector.