Maximising your offshore assets in the economic downturn
Acting only when an asset is on the verge of ceasing production is, in truth, too late. With this in mind, it is crucial to ensure that the whole process, from late-life asset management through to final decommissioning, is as effective and efficient as possible.
Three drivers are instrumental in achieving excellence and provide benefits for maintaining assets operability well past production with the acceptable standards of asset integrity:
DEVELOP AN OPERATOR STRATEGY FOR LATE-LIFE OPERATION
Apart from keeping assets in order to comply with the requirements and regulations dictated by the applicable regulatory body, the development of a strategy for late-life operation for a particular development should always be considered. This allows for changes in the market, the whole portfolio of assets and how this development fits with the overall plan, the minimum required maintenance to prevent any effects on production, potential redevelopments or re-use of existing assets, as well as decommissioning activities. Considering all parts of the process and all stakeholders will allow decisions to be better informed, costs controlled and overall profits maximised.
MAXIMISE LATE-LIFE OPERATIONS
The careful planning of a strategy will also allow operators to prioritise the decommissioning activities based on budget and availability. This way, those assets where maintenance or redevelopment work would not be of benefit and that currently have the most negative effect on the operators’ fixed cost, can be tackled immediately. With a small investment, potential benefits can be made by extending the life of assets whilst they wait their turn to be decommissioned.
APPLY BEST-PRACTICE CAPITAL INVESTMENT
Although developing the safest and easiest decommissioning plan will allow you to use the available capital effectively for the decommissioning phase, this just represents the final phase of capital investment. Going back to earlier phases including for e.g. design of the asset – will greatly affect the decommissioning activities and the costs associated through the life of the asset. With effective maintenance programmes that keep the structural integrity of the assets, this will reduce the uncertainty and potentially reduce significantly the scope of work for the abandonment.
Achieving excellence in late-life operations and decommissioning presents an unrivalled opportunity to maximise economic potential. Plan well and you capture value from assets which may have been missed.
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