BP's Harding Development employs a totally innovative concept for North Sea oil production. A large permanently insUiiicCi jack-up platform, incorporating production, drilling and living quarters facilities, is positioned on top of a concrete gravity storage base tank which holds Harding's acidic heavy crude before export, via a submerged turret loading buoy, to shuttle tankers. The use of horizontal drilling techniques in the early 1990's coupled with adoption of the above concept transformed a very marginal prospect into a viable development which currently has one of the lowest development costs per barrel in the North Sea.

The paper describes how the viability of the development has been achieved using an entirely new approach to project management by BP with a small integrated management team. The relationships created with design contractors, suppliers and fabricators are shown to represent the embodiment of the principles of the CRINE initiative and have secured for all parties benefits which can be used as benchmarks for future projects in a low oil price environment. Contractual arrangements are discussed and a new approach to Operations and Maintenance support contractors is highlighted.

The concept has potential for reducing abandonment costs due to the relative ease of decommissioning and removal.

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