BP Submits Decom Plan For Foinaven FPSO

Oil & Gas

Energy supermajor BP has handed in the decommissioning plan for the iconic Petrojarl Foinaven FPSO located West of Shetland.

BP decided in April 2021 to retire the Petrojarl Foinaven FPSO due to safety issues. The FPSO will be taken off station and handed back to its owner Teekay in 2022.

To remind, the UK Health and Safety Executive said it had identified cracks in the ship’s hull in February 2021. Inspectors questioned the strength of the hull and stated their doubts regarding the vessel’s suitability for operating in the harsh environment off Shetland.

Shortly after that BP stated that the Petrojarl Foinaven FPSO was not the right vehicle to recover the remaining resources from the area, even with further investment.

The Foinaven area comprises the Foinaven and Foinaven East fields, both operated by BP. The supermajor holds a 72 percent interest in the Foinaven field and a 43 percent interest in Foinaven East.

In mid-December last year, RockRose Energy agreed to sell its stake in the field to BP. RockRose holds a 28 percent non-operated interest in Foinaven and a 47 percent non-operated interest in Foinaven East.

This means that after the transaction is completed, BP will hold a 100 percent interest in Foinaven and 90 percent in Foinaven East. DNO will control the remaining 10 percent.

Production from the Foinaven FPSO started production in 1997 and it has reached the end of its 25-year design life. Altera will resume control of the vessel following removal from the Foinaven field. Thereafter it will be transferred onshore for re-use, recycling, or disposal at a UK or EU port.

BP is currently investigating further options for the Foinaven field which may result in complete redevelopment, partial redevelopment, or full decommissioning. If redevelopment of the field is not viable, BP will launch decommissioning programs for the remaining field infrastructure.

For now, BP said in the plan that the execution of the FPSO decommissioning will begin with the disconnection of the risers and umbilicals from the vessel and the removal of the FPSO and its mooring systems in the third quarter of 2022.

BP stated that the risers and umbilicals will be laid down on the seabed. The timing of their recovery will be influenced by the decision to redevelop or decommission the Foinaven field which will be assessed between the third quarter of 2023 and the third quarter of 2028.

The Foinaven field, which lies 118 miles west of Shetland, was discovered in 1992. The field was the first development in Atlantic water to the west of the United Kingdom although the adjacent Schiehallion field was sanctioned for development shortly afterward.

To contact the author, email bojan.lepic@rigzone.com

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