LONDON, England: Shell Oil announced this week that it has abandoned its plans to develop the Cambo oil field west of Shetland in the UK.
Industry observers note that the decision poses major ramifications for oil exploration in the region.
Shell Oil, which had planned to conduct field explorations by venturing with Siccar Point, justified its decision based upon the economic infeasibility of the enormous investment needed to move forward.
"After comprehensive screening of the proposed Cambo development, we have concluded that the economic case for investment in this project is not strong enough at this time, as well as having the potential for delays," according to a company statement.
Environmentalists claim Shell's step was nothing short of a "deathblow" to the Cambo project, which has faced stiff opposition from activist groups throughout the United Kingdom.
Greenpeace had dragged the government of the United Kingdom into court over its permission given for conducting oil drilling activities.
Following the United Nations COP26 climate summit held in Glasgow in October, Nicola Sturgeon, SNP leader and first minister of Scotland, hinted at her disagreement in allowing the project to proceed while impact studies are still underway.
Environmentalists remain opposed to the Cambo project, bearing in mind the United Kingdom's goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Governmental consent was initially provided two decades ago to conduct field exploitation at the location, some 78 miles offshore in one thousand-meter-deep waters.
According to a 2021 ministerial announcement, oil drilling parties will be allowed to continue to conduct exploration activities in the North Sea in pursuit of new reserves.