A large number of oil and gas assets in the North Sea are coming to the end of their design life expectancy and need to be decommissioned safely, securely and cost effectively. Well plugging and abandonment (P&A) is the largest component of decommissioning expenditure accounting for almost 50% of the cost.
According to UK Oil & Gas Decommissioning Report published in 2015 there are 1,224 wells scheduled for P&A in the UKCS over the next decade representing 30 % of all the wells in the basin. Many of 2,552 wells in the Norwegian basin of the North Sea are also coming to the end of their production life. Currently it takes around 40 days to plug a well in the North Sea with the daily cost varying from $200 to $500 thousand USD.
While decommissioning the wells the key focus is on ensuring there is zero risk of integrity failures resulting from abandonment operations. Since a P&A well will not generate any revenue it is clearly important to conduct decommissioning operations in the most cost-effective manner. Applying new and efficient technology for P&Aoperations is the easiest way to cut down on the number of days required to complete the operation and to minimise costs.
The top 3m of casing should be removed (UK regulations) from the well before the plugging process begins. Wells have debris and solids in the wellbore that need to be removed before safety barriers can be installed and the well can be filled with sealing material. This will ensure proper sealing of the well and minimise the risk of integrity failures after abandonment.
The FourPhase solids removal system called DualFlow, is designed with focus on minimal logistical impact, and a emphasis on safe and quick installation. DualFlow is a cost efficient and effective tool for handling debris and solids removed during well clean-up operations in preparation for plugging. The DualFlow solids removal system uses next generation cyclone technology, can be easily hooked up with coiled tubing tools in order to handle solids in a closed system with no manual operation and no environmental exposure.
With space being a premium on many offshore installations the DualFlow unit is designed to be compact – measuring 2.0 x 2.0 meter footprint. In addition to market leading solids removal technology FourPhase has an experienced team of experts in solids handling that can assist in performing cost efficient well clean-out operations in order to minimize plugging & abandonment costs.
Contact us for more information on how our solids removal system can cut down your plugging & abandonment costs.