The Energy and Climate Change Committee in a report said that any ban on deep water drilling in the UK waters would jeopardise energy supplies in the country.

The committee has opposed any drilling moratorium and urged the government to consider several safety precautions to combat oil spills.

It has also warned that the British taxpayers could end up paying the clean-up costs if any major oil spill occurs.

Specifically, the committee expressed doubts over the ability of clean-up equipment to function in the harsh conditions prevailing off the coast of Shetland, where oil wells are being drilled more than 1,000m deep.