INVERGORDON, UK – The Port of Cromarty Firth has become Scotland’s first port to secure a decommissioning Pollution Prevention Control Permit from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), under the latest environment legislation.
In 2013, the Pollution Prevention Control Regulations were updated to ensure that emissions to air, water (including discharges to sewer) and land, plus various other environmental effects, must be considered in totality.
The newly awarded permit covers virtually the entire Port-owned Invergordon Service Base, with around 600 m (1,968 ft) of quayside and 80,000 sq m (861,113 sq ft) of laydown area.
It also allows for the processing of 50,000 metric tons/yr (55,115 tons/yr) of waste material.
The port is said to provide easy access to the central and northern UK North Sea field complexes, in waters up to 50 m (164 ft) deep.
A recent report by ALE confirmed the port’s ability to take structures up to 12,000 metric tons (13,228 tons) across its quayside. Recently, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise also recognized it as one of the main Scottish ports capable of performingdecommissioning work.
In the past the port undertook decommissioning projects associated with two semisubmersible rigs, subsea manifolds, and renewable energy devices, before the environmental regulations changed in 2013.
Current tenants include specialists in rig repair and maintenance projects, and there are also established and new alliances of contractors in demolition, waste management and NORM decontamination to take on dismantling and recycling of large oil and gas structures.
The port is already in discussions with companies with structures in need of decommissioning.