The UK Government Gives Green Light to BP's Murlach Oil and Gas Field Redevelopment
Posted 13/09/2023 10:58
BP's plans for the Murlach oil and gas redevelopment in the North Sea have received approval from the UK government and regulators. The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero announced that the two-well project had been granted formal approval for its environmental statement. This decision came after Secretary of State Grant Shapps endorsed it before his departure in late August. Subsequently, the North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA) also granted consent on September 8th, marking a significant milestone for the project and BP as the operator.
Murlach is a redevelopment project of the Marnock-Skua field, located approximately 126 miles east of Aberdeen. This field was previously in production in the early 2000s under Shell's operation. The redevelopment aims to recover around 26 million barrels of oil and 602 million cubic meters of gas. BP acquired the license, along with joint venture partner NEO Energy, as part of the 30th Licensing Round after it was relinquished by a rival supermajor.
Doris Reiter, BP’s senior vice president for the North Sea, expressed the company's commitment to investing in both traditional energy systems and the energy transition. The Murlach field will be connected to the Eastern Trough Area Project (ETAP) hub, which has been operating in the central North Sea for 25 years. This redevelopment project benefits from the reuse of some existing subsea infrastructure in the area.
The Murlach project includes two production wells and a subsea tieback to the ETAP installation, with an expected production life of around 11 years. Peak production is estimated to reach approximately 20,000 barrels of oil per day and around 17 million cubic feet of associated gas per day. The project will utilize existing infrastructure around the Murlach Field and require some modifications to the ETAP topside facilities.
Activities are scheduled to commence in Q3 2023, starting with modifications to the ETAP topside. Subsea facility installation and drilling operations are expected to take place in 2024, with first oil production anticipated in Q2 2025.