Energy Economy

24 Nov 2022

Dismantling Old North Sea Wells Could Cost £20BN

24 Nov 2022  by   

Image: Shutterstock

Oil and gas companies are predicted to spend nearly £20 billion to decommission more than two thousand North Sea wells.

That’s according to a new report by Offshore Energies UK (OEUK), which estimates around 2,100 wells will be dismantled over the next decade at an average cost of £7.8 million per well.

The report’s authors note that in 2021, nearly a tenth of UK Continental Shelf oil and gas expenditure went on decommissioning – this proportion has risen to 14% in 2022 and is set to rise to 19% by 2031.

OEUK Decommissioning Manager Ricky Thomson said: “The UK’s decommissioning sector is snowballing and will continue growing for years to come.

“But this poses a challenge as well as an opportunity. The growth of renewables and demand for decommissioning services and expertise will create increasing pressure for resources.”


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