Implementing best practices to ensure well integrity in the Middle East
IMPLEMENTING BEST PRACTICES
The conference, which included representatives and speakers from E.on, BG Group, Shell, DEA, Repsol, TAQA, and Premier Oil, began to discuss techniques of implementing integrity best practice for the Middle East. Right from the planning phase, and with a more risk assessment approach, here are just some of the best practices highlighted by the operators that should be considered for implementation in more detail:
Allowing more time to select the best team configuration to assess, manage and monitor potential well integrity failures is key. Undertaking a “new strategic and technical path” too can assure that any work required is thought through, and not rushed.
Creating a detailed review of known failure models can help identify known unknowns that require immediate action in the field. Together with more regular monitoring techniques, operators could share knowledge leading to a better understanding of well integrity risk throughout the region. Monitoring could be actioned by fibre optic lines to evaluate flow, leak diagnosis, and leak detection.
A basic request suggested by operators was the importance of clear communication and understanding of risk. To better negate the chances of a serious problem, and act on any problems that occur, a rationalisation of well integrity tasks should be implemented to those who are most effective at resolving the issue.
More checks, more standards
It seems too simple to suggest doing more integrity checks, but with so much at stake should equipment go wrong, the importance of regular checks for damage and corrosion cannot be overstated. For platforms engineers that still sway between what specifications and standards to use offshore, it is up to operators to send a clear message that universally recognised specifications should be used only.
EXTENDING ASSET LIFE SAFELY
Despite a recent spike in oil price, the cost to invest in new wells in a maturing market is unfeasible. If operators are to continue to keep old assets going, they must ensure well integrity not only for safety purposes but for the sake of their bottom line too.
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