Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

We Are Able and Ready. North Sea Skills Are Hailed

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

We Are Able and Ready. North Sea Skills Are Hailed

Article excerpt

Byline: Kelley Price Business Reporter

ABLE UK's expertise for off-shore decommissioning has been highlighted at a major conference.

Costs of decommissioning end-of-life North Sea oil and gas platforms are forecast to reach more than PS50bn in the next 35 years.

Billingham-based Able is spending millions upgrading Seaton Port, after winning the contract to dismantle four structures from Shell's Brent field - and bosses say the company can play a "major role" in meeting the future challenges of the growing market for decommissioning.

Decom North Sea, the industry's independent organisation, has called for greater collaboration between operators and supply chain companies to cut costs. Its flagship conference in Aberdeen focused on the opportunities and cost and effi-ciency challenges facing the sector - and also showcased Able's world-class facilities.

Speaking after Shell unveiled plans for the decommissioning of its Brent Delta platform earlier this year, Decom chief executive Nigel Jenkins said: "By its very nature, North Sea decommissioning is a developing business that is new to many and misinterpreted by even more.

"It's important to make it clear that it is not about the premature closure of the North Sea oil and gas industry.

"In reality, decommissioning is a developing sector that is full of opportunity; the opportunity to win business and opportunities to problem-solve through innovation. Crucially, and more pertinent than ever just now, this all needs to take place within the context of MERUK (Maximising Economic Recovery in the UK), a strategy which was formally introduced through the Wood Review.

"To achieve those cost effi-ciencies and benefits, decommissioning activity simply can't take place in isolation. It requires long-term collaboration between operators, the supply chain and bodies such as Decom North Sea, the new Oil & Gas Authority, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and Oil & Gas UK. …

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