Oil production vessel to be decommissioned in Shetland

Dales Voe in Shetland is to be used for the decommissioning of the Buchan Alpha, a semi-submersible moored floating production vessel (originally a drilling rig).

Photocredit: John Coutts Photography

Following a competitive tendering process, Repsol Sinopec Resources UK confirmed it had awarded the decommissioning contract to Veolia to be carried out at Dales Voe.

HIE provided £2.39m towards an £11.95 million project by Lerwick Port Authority to strengthen and develop quayside infrastructure at Dales Voe, in order to accommodate large decommissioning projects such as this.

Welcoming the news, HIE area manager in Shetland Rachel Hunter, said: “This is a culmination of a huge amount of work involving Lerwick Port Authority, HIE, Scottish and UK governments and the Oil and Gas Authority.

“It’s great to see Dales Voe competing successfully for such a contract. It demonstrates, not only the quality of the facilities available here but the capabilities of the supply chain companies and personnel.”

HIE and Scottish Enterprise launched Scotland’s Decommissioning Action Plan in December 2016. The plan aims to support Scotland’s oil and gas sector to take advantage of the estimated £17.6 billion forecast by Oil & Gas UK to be spent on decommissioning on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) between now and 2025.

The improvements at Dales Voe were completed in July 2016. The quay can now accommodate berthing of vessels up to 185 metres long, with heavy bollards for large scale vessels (150 tonnes capacity).

The extended quayside can accept very heavy loads, with load bearing of 60 tonnes per sqm to handle piece-large oil and gas decommissioning projects and substantial cranes lifting sizable pieces of kit.

These facilities enable decommissioning contractors to use Lerwick for Single Lift decommissioning.

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