BOEMRE calls for permanent plugs in 3,500 wells, 650 platform removals

Operators in the Gulf of Mexico will have to set permanent plugs in about 3,500 non-producing wells and dismantle 650 production platforms under a new notice from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement.

Offshore staff

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Operators in the Gulf of Mexico will have to set permanent plugs in about 3,500 non-producing wells and dismantle 650 production platforms under a new notice from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement. The Notice to Lessees is effective starting Oct. 15, 2010.

“As part of our sustained effort to improve the safety of energy production on the outer continental shelf and strengthen environmental protections, we are notifying offshore operators of their legal responsibility to decommission and dismantle their facilities when production is completed,” said Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar upon release of the notice.

“As infrastructure continues to age, the risk of damage increases,” said BOEMRE director Michael R. Bromwich. “That risk increases substantially during storm season. This initiative is the product of careful thought and analysis and requires that these wells, platforms and pipelines are plugged and dismantled correctly and in a timely manner to substantially reduce such hazards.”

09/16/2010

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