Shell has taken the final investment decision to develop its Jackdaw gas field in the UK central North Sea but environmental campaigners immediately said they planned to launch a legal challenge.

Shell said it expects Jackdaw to come on stream in the middle of the decade and achieve peak production of about 40,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

The development is set to comprise a wellhead platform that will not be attended permanently, four production wells and other subsea infrastructure that will be tied back 31 kilometres by pipeline to Shell’s Shearwater gas hub.