This paper describes a process for actively managing well integrity throughout the development life cycle with a particular focus on the production operations / well maintenance phase. Although developed in relation to ConocoPhillips UK North Sea development wells, most of the features of the process have application to all development well operations (both onshore & offshore) under any regulatory regime.

The original well integrity management process was developed in order to demonstrate compliance with the UK Offshore Installations & Wells (Design & Construction, etc) Regulations 1996 (DCR). Since that time the original process has continued to be modified to improve effectiveness & efficiency. As well as describing the current process, this paper also describes its development and how we see that the process might evolve in the future.

DCR regulations form a part of the UK ‘safety case’ regime. The ‘safety case’ regime places a strong focus on the development of site-specific performance standards; it also utilises the principles of independent examination & verification in order to demonstrate compliance. The process described in this paper represents a significant new contribution to the management of major accident hazards in well operations since it focuses on the use of performance standards and independent examination in order to ensure well integrity.

You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.