17,000 tonne oil platform arrives on coast in move that will protect 80 jobs
The Brent Alpha platform has reached the end of its natural life and has been transported from its former home northeast of the Shetland islands to England’s east coast to be disposed of.
It follows in the footsteps of its fellow platforms Brent Delta and Brent Bravo that were decommissioned at Able Seaton Port.
Peter Stephenson, founder and executive chairman of Able UK, hailed the operation which involved Allseas’ giant single lift vessel ‘Pioneering Spirit’, with the final stage involving the transfer to the Allseas’ cargo barge ‘The Iron Lady’ for the tow into the Seaton Channel and load-in at Able Seaton Port’s specialist £20m Quay 6.
Mr Stephenson added that further major contracts are set to begin over the coming months.
Able Seaton Port will be providing the installation base for the 90 Mitsubishi Vestas turbines that will comprise Innogy’s 857MW Triton Knoll offshore wind farm.
Mr Stephenson said: “The Brent contract is just about the most prestigious oil and gas decommissioning project in the world. The fact that we were selected is testament to our commitment to undertake complex and challenging operations to the highest environmental standards, working with many of the world’s major energy companies.
“Gaining our reputation as a market leader has involved major investments at Able Seaton Port, including constructing one of the strongest quays in Europe, with the aim of both remaining at the forefront of the decommissioning industry as well as becoming a key player in exploiting the vast potential of the emerging offshore wind sector.
“As well as beginning work on the Brent Alpha, a further decommissioning contract will commence in July and from the middle of September.
“We are uniquely placed to be engaged in the end of life process for parts of the oil and gas sector whilst at the same are becoming increasingly involved in the renewable energies of the future. In many respects we have the bases covered being heavily engaged at both ends of the offshore energy sectors. Even more so in these difficult times this has to be good news for our company, for our region and, of course, for our colleagues.”