Houston, Texas (PRWEB UK) 22 September 2014
Since 2001, as fields have matured and reserves have depleted, production levels in the Gulf of Mexico have been in decline. As technology has developed, operators have extended drilling and production further offshore and into progressively deeper waters to mitigate this decline.
During this same period, the region has also been severely impacted by hurricanes and fluctuating oil prices, which have resulted in consistently high levels of decommissioning activity on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), governed by stringent and developing regulations, including the Idle Iron NTL. However, it is widely accepted that decommissioning levels on the shelf have peaked and activity in this region is now in decline. In 2014, the trend for decommissioning is moving away from shallower waters into more far more challenging water depths, greater than 1,000ft, where ROV’s must be used in place of divers, the technical challenges increase in complexity – all of which impact project timelines and cost.
With over 76% of subsea equipment in the Gulf of Mexico in water depths greater than 500m (source: Infield Systems) the liability for decommissioning deepwater assets across the industry is significant. As of January 2013, 95 structures in waters deeper than 400ft were producing from 997 dry-tree wells and 191 subsea wells. (Source: U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management)
According to Offshore Network primary research, the industry standard for the plugging & abandoning of a subsea well sits around $33m, but some major operators, going far beyond current requirements, are spending upwards of $100m per subsea well to P&A it. In terms of structures, 110 fixed, tensioned, and moored structures have been installed in water depths greater than 400 ft. Of these, a total of 15 had been decommissioned by 2012. (Source: the US BOEM.)
Over the next decade, deepwater decommissioning activity is set to continue to increase as operators are currently planning or executing first of a kind programs that are the start of an upward trend. These projects take longer, have greater technical and operational challenges and are exponentially more costly than shallow water equivalents.
Deepwater Decommissioning Workshop 2015, Houston February 10 – 11.
DDW 2015 has the objective of sharing case studies of regional and international projects as well innovative processes and technologies that will provide operators with the information needed to more efficiently retire their deepwater assets. Leading stakeholders from the Gulf of Mexico, including Anadarko, BHP Billiton, Baker Hughes, TSB Offshore and Wrights Well Control will be contributing to the discussions. This is a must-attend workshop for anybody involved in deepwater decommissioning.
For more information please contact:
Director | Offshore Network Ltd.
t: +44 (0) 203 411 9144 | e: jtaylor(at)offsnet(dot)com
About the Deepwater Decommissioning Workshop:
Taking place at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Houston, Texas, on February 10 – 11 2015, the Deepwater Decommissioning Workshop has the objective of sharing regional and international case studies, highlighting innovative processes and technologies for the retirement of deepwater assets. In particular, we will share benchmarks for the removal of SPAR's, TLP's and FPSO's and the plugging and abandonment of subsea and direct vertical access wells in water depths greater than 1,000ft.
About Offshore Network:
Offshore Network exist to facilitate a safe and efficient future for the exploration and production of oil & gas around the globe. We do this by uniting the most influential figures in the industry to challenge the status quo and share cutting edge innovations. This all happens at our industry leading conferences and through our original content. http://www.offsnet.com