Dutch oil and gas firm NAM to divest its fossil fuel assets
The Nederlandse Aardolie Maatschappij (NAM) will divest all its gas and oil extraction activities. These activities will be placed in separate companies to make the sales possible. Only the Groningen field, where the gas tap will be closed next year, and two gas storage facilities in Norg in Grijpskerk will still fall under the NAM.
These gas storage facilities will still be necessary for the gas supply in the Netherlands in the coming years. In Groningen, NAM is only concerned with closing the gas field and the "settlement of the earthquake problem" in the province.
The gas company said it has little room to invest in the small gas fields in the North Sea and the Wadden Sea, Friesland, Drenthe, Noord-Holland, and Zuid-Holland, among others. "We think it would therefore be good if the small fields are eventually taken over by an operator that has more investment space," said NAM director Johan Atema at the announcement. According to Atema, this is also in line with the government's policy that wants to maintain the extraction of gas from the small gas fields because it is good for the security of gas supply in the Netherlands.
The NAM, which Shell and ExxonMobil jointly own, wants to complete its reorganization next year. This step has no direct consequences for the staff, said the gas company. The employees will only notice once there is a sale.
Shell said that NAM's plans are in line with the oil and gas company's strategic plans. According to Shell Nederland president-director Marjan van Loon, this strategy requires "sharp choices," in which the company says it is committed to accelerating the energy transition. Van Loon emphasized that Shell continues to support the earlier agreements about Groningen with the Dutch government. The oil and gas group in Noord-Nederland will also continue to invest in clean energy projects.
Reporting by ANP