Helix details first New Zealand decommissioning win

Helix Energy Solutions is set to carry out well abandonment, recovery of subsea trees and wellhead severance and recovery at the Tui oil field offshore New Zealand as part of the contract recently secured with New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE).

The five-well complete abandonment work scope will be performed using the 10K Intervention Riser System (IRS) and Helix Q7000 light well intervention rig, which is expected to mobilize in late 2022 to the Tui Field offshore New Plymouth.

The Q7000 will perform the work in three phases. Excluding mobilization, the project is anticipated to last approximately 60 days.

According to Helix, the contract represents the company’s first-ever decommissioning project offshore New Zealand.

“This award, coming on the heels of our award with Cooper Energy, shows that an integrated vessel package such as the Q7000 can address a wide range of subsea decommissioning challenges,” said David Carr, senior vice president – International for Helix Well Ops.

“With Schlumberger, our partners in the Subsea Services Alliance, we provide a complete solution to complex decommissioning scopes. As we commence this project, we look forward to working with tangata whenua, MBIE and the wider community to protect and restore the mana of this location.”

This contract with MBIE, announced a few days ago, is Helix’s second recent award in the Asia Pacific region, following the award of Cooper Energy BMG wells abandonment in Australia’s Bass Strait.

The project represents the third phase of Tui oil field decommissioning. MBIE’s application for marine consents with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) for the removal of the subsea infrastructure and the plugging and abandoning of the Tui wells is currently being considered.

To remind, the first phase of the decommissioning of the Tui oil field, the disconnection and demobilization of the FPSO Umuroa, was completed in May.

For the second phase, MBIE selected Shelf Subsea Services to undertake the removal of the subsea infrastructure. The work is expected to be conducted in the summer of 2022 or 2023.