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    Sell out conference demonstrates industry interest in decommissioning opportunities

    News // October 12, 2010

    Decom North Sea and Oil & Gas UK held its Offshore Decommissioning Conference in Dunblane, Scotland earlier this month.

    Sponsored by Aker Solutions and Wood Group Engineering (North Sea) Ltd, the purpose of the two-day conference, delivered in association with Industry Technology Facilitator (ITF), is to increase awareness of the opportunities available across the industry and to ensure that the supply chain is prepared to meet the challenges presented by the decommissioning of the UK's oil and gas infrastructure.

    Brian Nixon, Decom North Sea's chief executive, and Paul Dymond, Oil & Gas UK's operations director, are jointly chairing the event, which has attracted more than 180 delegates.

    Mr Dymond commented: "This is the third in a series of decommissioning conferences. Industry interest is increasing and this year our focus is on encouraging further integration and expansion of regional capabilities for decommissioning in the UK continental shelf."

    Glen Cayley, vice president technical - Europe, Shell Upstream International, delivered the opening keynote address at the conference and introduced the main themes: lessons learned so far from North Sea decommissioning, the opportunities presented by, and analysis of, the UK market, contracting strategies and the Government's view of the process.

    Mr Dymond continued: "To pursue efficient decommissioning, we believe encouraging the emergence and development of companies with the capability to deliver the full range of technologies and services is in everyone's interest. This requires the sharing of insights into the market potential, which is why our first session features a line up of authoritative speakers from the operator, contractor and supply chain communities who are ready to share their experience and outline the industry's forward agenda."

    Comprising 630 installations, 10,000km pipelines and 5,000 wells, the estimated cost of decommissioning the UKCS is now 27 billion, a cost that has doubled in the last five years.

    The intention at Decom North Sea and Oil & Gas UK is to take a proactive approach to encouraging collaboration between asset owners and effective communication with the supply chain to enable the industry to realise the full potential of the decommissioning market. The conference provides delegates with the chance to catch up on the results of recent collaborative work aimed at achieving a better understanding of the market place.

    Brian Nixon said: "Delegates will be invited to contribute to one of four workshops designed to capture an industry perspective on the strengths and challenges facing four sectors of the industry; platforms, wells, subsea and onshore disposal. Our aim is to document the actions that result from these activities and identify how we take on the responsibilities that emerge from the conference."

    On the second day of the conference attendees explored the forward agenda for decommissioning, taking a look at decommissioning within a wider context. Input on this theme was provided by the ITF, the Society for Underwater Technology (SUT) and the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers (OGP) and the session finished with a presentation on the decommissioning experiences and strategies of the nuclear industry.

    At the end of the conference tomorrow, Gunther Newcombe, vice president, decommissioning at BP, presented the industry's view of the conference outcomes and his expectations of developing business in the decommissioning market. The Rt Hon Michael Moore MP, Secretary of State for Scotland, delivered the Government's view on addressing the challenges the oil and gas industry faces in the coming decades.


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