£1.6 Billion Central North Sea Oil Development Gets Under Way

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15 January 1996

The consent of the UK's Department of Trade and Industry was received on December 20 to start the £1.6 billion development of the Eastern Trough Area Project (ETAP), a group of seven offshore accumulations 150 miles east of Aberdeen.

BP holds a 53% interest in the development and will operate the ETAP facilities on behalf of the owners - BP, Shell, Esso, Agip, Murphy, BHP and Mitsubishi Oil.

The fields involved in the development are the BP-operated Marnock, Mungo, Monan and Machar and the Shell/Esso Heron, Egret and Skua. They have combined estimated reserves of some 400 million barrels of oil, 35 million barrels of natural gas liquids and 1.1 trillion cubic feet of sales gas. Peak oil export volume is anticipated to be some 210,000 barrels a day. The annual average gas export volume is expected to be some 360 million cubic feet a day. The development will involve the construction of a two-platform Central Processing Facility, located over the Marnock field, which will provide processing facilities, utilities and accommodation. A normally-unmanned platform will be placed over the Mungo field. The Machar and Monan fields will produce through subsea manifolds tied back to the Central Processing Facility, as will the Heron, Skua and Egret fields.

Oil export will be through the Forties Pipeline System while gas export will be through the Central Area Transmission System.

Construction work will commence in early 1996. Drilling will commence in the summer of 1996 and in total some thirty wells will be drilled. First production is scheduled for the second half of 1998.

1. Marnock field participants are:

  • BP Exploration (Operator) 62.05%
  • Shell U.K. Limited 13.50%
  • Esso Exploration and Production U.K. Ltd 13.50%
  • Agip (U.K.) Limited 10.95%

Mungo and Monan fields participants are:

  • BP Exploration (Operator) 69.93%
  • BHP Petroleum 12.43%
  • MOC Exploration (UK) Ltd
    • (a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Oil Co. Ltd) 5.00%
  • Murphy Petroleum Ltd
    • (a subsidiary of Murphy Oil Corporation) 12.64%

Heron, Skua and Egret fields participants are:

  • Shell U.K. Limited (Operator) 50.00%
  • Esso Exploration and Production U.K Ltd 50.00%

Machar Field participant is:

  • BP Exploration (Operator) 100.00%

The members of the Facilities Alliance for the Central Processing Facility and for the BP-operated fields include the following:
Design and
Management Project Management,
engineering and
procurement Brown & Root Limited
of London Tonnes

Fabrication Process Platform
Topsides, Comprising;
Process Module
Cellar Deck
Flare Stack
AMEC of Wallsend 14,000
Jacket Barmac 7,000

Utilities and Quarters Platform
Topsides Trafalgar House of Methil 6,000
Jacket Trafalgar House of Methil 3,500
Accommodation/Helideck Consafe of Aberdeen 500

Mungo Platform (A Not Normally Manned Installation)
Topsides Trafalgar House of Methil 2,000
Jacket Trafalgar House of Methil 3,000
Pipelay Export pipelines and
infield flow lines To Be Announced
Installation Tie ins of flowlines and
pipelines, and the
installation of umbilicals To Be Announced
Transport and
Installation Transportation and
installation of the
jacket and topside facilities
structures Heeremac of the Netherlands
The Wells Alliance for the BP operated fields comprises BP, Schlumberger, Santa Fe and Neddrill. It will cover all drilling activity for the Marnock, Mungo, Monan and Machar Fields (involving the design and construction of 25 wells).
Shell UK Limited, as operator, is developing the Shell/Esso Heron, Egret and Skua fields in parallel with the other ETAP fields and will make its own separate statement.
Investment has been made on the Central Processing Facility for the receipt of the Scoter and Mirren fields. This investment allows the possibility of developing these fields through ETAP, though no development decisions have yet been made in respect of these fields.
The Machar field is currently undergoing production testing to assess the effectiveness of water injection on oil recovery. A decision on whether to include water injection in the full field life development of Machar as part of ETAP will be made once testing is complete.

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