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A section of the BP Eastern Trough Area Project (ETAP) oil platform is seen in the North Sea, around 100 miles east of Aberdeen in Scotland February 24, 2014. Britain urgently needs its oil and gas companies to pay for a new regulatory body to encourage industry collaboration and counter plunging North Sea production rates, a government review, the first since the mid-1990s, said on Monday
A section of the BP Eastern Trough Area Project (ETAP) oil platform is seen in the North Sea, around 100 miles east of Aberdeen in Scotland February 24, 2014. Britain urgently needs its oil and gas companies to pay for a new regulatory body to encourage industry collaboration and counter plunging North Sea production rates, a government review, the first since the mid-1990s, said on Monday
(Andy Buchanan/Reuters)

It’s Scotland’s oil, and it could be Scotland’s burden

The fight between England and Scotland over who should be in charge of North Sea oil has finally begun. Indignant in Edinburgh, the Scottish nationalists have campaigned for a generation with the slogan “It’s Scotland’s oil,” complaining that Westminster squandered their tax money. An independent Scotland would establish an oil fund and invest for the future, the separatists say, but the truth is the oil reserves are dwindling fast – and then there is the horrendous cost of removing redundant offshore oil platforms.