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UK output efficiency on the rise

July 16, 2018 | Singapore | OSEA2018 Industry Insights

UK output efficiency on the rise
Figures for last year show fifth consecutive improvement as UKCS players instill efficiency culture and utilise technology, OGA says.

Production efficiency on the UK continental shelf almost returned to 2008 levels last year after recording a fifth consecutive year-on-year rise. Overall, production efficiency was 74%, a 1% rise on 2016 and just shy of the 76% in 2008, when it went on a years-long slide to just 60% in 2012, a new report from UK regulator the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA) showed.

However, since then it has grown steadily, with a leap from 65% in 2014 to 71% in 2015.The 1% rise last year represented 12 million barrels of oil equivalent of additional production, or 32,000 boe per day, the UKCS Production Efficiency 2017 report, released on Tuesday, said.

Production efficiency was also up in three of the five regions of the UKCS, with the most pronounced increase in the southern North Sea, from 64% in 2016 to 71% in 2017, above the 69% recorded in 2015. The central North Sea rose from 75% to 78% year-on-year, well above the 72% in 2015.

In the West of Shetland area, production efficiency was 69%, well ahead of the 63% in 2016 and the 54% in 2015. The northern North Sea, however, saw a drop from 78% to 76%, still slightly above 2015’s 74%.

In the east Irish Sea, there was a pronounced slump to 35% from 63% in 2016, itself a fall from the 64% a year earlier. The OGA said much of the improved efficiency was due to the increased use of technology and also a culture of efficiency across the industry.

Production losses last year were also cut to 200 million boe, from 210 million boe in 2016. The use of integrated operation centres, long used in the airline industry to good effect, is also increasing in oil and gas, according to the report

“With the rise of digital connectivity to offshore installations, the value of this approach is ever increasing,” the OGA said.

“Integrated control centres help to bridge the divide between disciplines, contractors and locations and allow for a co-ordinated approach with a focus on maximising overall value.”

Loraine Pace, the OGA’s head of performance, planning and reporting, said: “The report shows that industry has worked hard to deploy new technologies and shift towards efficiency cultures which has helped to achieve the 1% improvement.

“Looking ahead, the OGA remains committed to working with all operators in their efforts to further increase (production efficiency).”

Matt Nicol, Production Efficiency Task Force (PETF) chairman, added: “Industry’s and individuals’ hard work and focus on best practice and new technology is sustaining these efficiency improvements, and I see many companies and people working together to deliver tangible progress.”

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