In an increasingly environmentally conscious world the forthcoming abandonment of North Sea Oil and Gas Platforms will need to be conducted in an environmentally friendly, and cost efficient manner. This study into some of the environmental costs of these activities evaluates four abandonment methodologies from an energy consumption, and CO2 production viewpoint, and identifies the problems associated with each from a ‘local’ and ‘global’ perspective.

The study shows that the selection of abandonment method can play a large part in determining of the overall energy and CO2 efficiency of the abandonment works, and also shows the difference between the ‘local’ costs to recover the structure, and the ‘global’ costs that result from those actions. It is also shown that the potential environmental savings from recycling materials are more than large enough to justify the extra environmental expense to recover all of a steel jacket and topsides. I.e. small costs for a large gain.

The end conclusion is that there is the potential to fully recover all the steel platforms in the North Sea in a financially and environmentally efficient manner, but in order to do this there will need to be a co-ordinated Inter Government, Inter Company (Operators and Contractors) drive, that will force a rethink of a lot of current practises.

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