‘First of its kind’ cross-border energy conference in Norwich to discuss decommissioning

By | November 16, 2018

Decommissioning in the oil and gas industry will be the subject of two conferences in Norwich and the Netherlands this month. Picture: Perenco

Decommissioning in the southern North Sea (SNS) will be the focus of two “unique” cross-Channel events being organised by energy industry trade bodies.

The East of England Energy Group (EEEGR) and the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) are putting on the events in Norwich and Amsterdam – which they believe will be the first of their kind to take place between the two countries – to bring together UK and Dutch energy operators and supply chain companies.

The East of England Energy Group and the Oil and Gas Authority are joining forces for two events in Norwich and the Netherlands on decommissioning. Picture: TMS Media

Taking oil and gas installations out of service presents a logistical and financial challenge to the industry. According to OGA figures, decommissioning is expected to cost £60-70bn in the UK with significant costs also forecast in the Netherlands.

But it is also an opportunity for the local energy supply chains, who could use existing skills and technologies – or develop new ones – to aid the process and reduce the cost burden on operators.

Framed as a “hackathon”, the UK event at Norwich City Football Club on October 9 will feature presentations from operators including Shell/NAM, Oranje-Nassau, Spirit Energy and Perenco, as well as giving supply chain companies a chance to network with these energy giants.

An invitation-only event in Amsterdam will follow on October 24.

EEEGR’s decommissioning special interest group is staging the events, which have been developed by OGA and Nexstep in the Netherlands.

Simon Gray, EEEGR chief executive, says: “The oil and gas industry has to work together if the costs around decommissioning are to be kept to a minimum and the opportunities it presents to the supply chain are to be fully realised.

“These events will give people from the industry in the UK and the Netherlands the chance to explore the challenges of decommissioning in the shallower waters of the SNS basin in interactive sessions and connect with potential new clients.”

Bill Cattanach, head of supply chain at OGA, says: “Momentum has been building for this first ever cross-border interactive engagement event with our Dutch neighbours. This unique occasion will allow SNS operators and the service sector to come together in a collaborative environment where growing opportunities for the supply chain are expected to be unveiled.”

Jacqueline Vaessen, general manager of Nexstep says: “We see this event as an interesting first step to encourage collaboration between operators and the supply chain by brainstorming on actual decommissioning challenges operators face in southern North Sea. This is important because only with collaboration we will be able to reduce the decommissioning costs.”

For the agenda and to book, visit www.eeegr.com/events/uk-netherlands-oil-gas-hackathon.

Story by Bethany Whymark for the Eastern Daily Press