Maureen to be Reused and Recycled

Tuesday, October 16, 2001
Phillips Petroleum's UK subsidiary has exercised the option in its existing contract with Aker Maritime to deconstruct the Maureen platform for re-use and recycling. Maureen is to date the largest platform in the world to be removed after use. Parts of the substructure are planned to be used in a new quay at Stord in western Norway - and the aim is to use anew or recycle no less than 95 percent of the platform. The assignment is worth NOK 700 million, which brings the total value of Aker Maritime's work with Maureen to NOK 1 500 million.

Working with Phillips, Aker Maritime was closely involved in the planning and executing for the refloat of the 110 000-tonne steel platform in the UK sector. In June it was towed inshore and moored in the Digernes Sound off Aker Stord's yard for inspection and cleaning.

For many years Phillips has been studying potential full and partial re-use opportunities for the platform. The company has carried out a thorough assessment of what will provide the best solution from an environmental point of view. Phillips has now exercised its contractual option with Aker Maritime to begin preparations for the deconstruction of the platform. Some of the equipment will be put up for sale. The remainder of the metals and other materials on the platform will be recycled and used in new products.

Aker Maritime has submitted a proposal to Phillips for a partial re-use of the platform as a new quay at the Aker Stord site. This proposal for re-use is in accord with the waste hierarchy and offers a better environmental solution and energy balance than totally deconstructing the facilities.

The use of the platform's solid ballast in the foundations of a new quay at Aker Stord will combine good use of resources and regard for the environment. PCB pollution from old ship's painting and cutting oil has been identified in the seabed sediments within the harbour basin. The contaminated mud will be recovered, packed in a polyester-reinforced wrapping, placed deep within the quay filling behind another fibre covering and finally covered with a layer of sand and mass of stones. At the same time the deposited material will create a barrier, which will prevent PCB residues from a previous quay filling seeping out into the harbor basin.

The plan for a new quay has been approved by the local authorities, and the Norwegian Pollution Control Authority will give its final decision sometime in week 42 or 43. The new quay is also an important element in the comprehensive modernization planned by Aker Stord.

In 1996 Aker Stord built one of the world's few dedicated facilities for the recycling of platforms at its site. It has a cooperation agreement with local authority environmental bodies for the disposal of waste from these activities. The new facility was used for the demolition of the Odin platform, just over 98 per cent of which was reused or recycled. The aim with Maureen is to reach the same satisfactory outcome.

During winter the platform deck will be lifted from the substructure and brought in to the decommissioning facility at Aker Stord. The substructure will then be cut up in pieces. The recycling of the loading buoy, which was also removed from the field, is also included in the assignment.

Installed on the UK field in 1983, the Maureen platform produced 223 million barrels of oil. Right from the start Phillips designed the platform so that it could be removed in an environmentally-friendly way, and as much of it as possible reused.

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