Shell sanctions North Sea tie-back to TotalEnergies’ UK gas hub
UK-headquartered energy giant Shell has taken a final investment decision (FID) to develop a gas field in the UK sector of the North Sea, located approximately 47 km northwest of the Shetland Islands.
After completing the acquisition of a 100% interest in Corallian Energy Ltd in November 2022, which exclusively comprised the P2596 Victory license, Shell worked on the FID for the Victory gas field in the UK North Sea. With the FID now out of the way, the development will feature a single subsea well which will be tied back to the existing infrastructure of TotalEnergies’ Greater Laggan Area (GLA) system, using a new 16 km pipeline.
TotalEnergies’ West of Shetland gas project covers the producing Greater Laggan Area fields – Laggan, Tormore, Edradour, and Glenlivet gas fields – and the undeveloped Glendronach gas field, located up to 125 km northwest of the Shetland Islands. Based on the North Sea Transition Authority’s data, only 38% of the UK’s 2022 gas consumption was domestically produced, as the rest was imported.
According to Shell, the Victory field will come online in the middle of the decade and at its peak, produce enough gas to heat almost 900,000 homes per year. As this is around 150 million standard cubic feet per day of gas – approximately 25,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day – the field is expected to help maintain domestically produced gas for Britain’s homes, businesses, and power generation, once on stream.
Simon Roddy, Shell UK Upstream Senior Vice President, commented: “The UK North Sea is a critical national resource, providing a steady supply of the fuels people rely on today and strengthening the country’s energy security and resilience. Continued investment is required to sustain domestic production, which is declining faster than the UK’s demand for oil and gas.”
Furthermore, most of the field’s recoverable gas is expected to be extracted by the end of the decade. The Victory field’s gas will be processed onshore at the Shetland Gas Plant before being piped to the UK mainland to enter the National Grid at St Fergus, where Shell UK is also helping develop the Acorn carbon capture and storage (CCS) project.
Since Victory will be developed as a tie-back to existing infrastructure, its operational emissions are anticipated to be lower than for many current UK North Sea gas fields. Shell claims that this project supports its Powering Progress strategy to deliver more value with less emissions, providing the energy people need today while developing the low-carbon energy system of the future.
Located in block 207/1a, approximately 80 km NW of the Shetland Isles, and 17 km from the closest pipeline infrastructure, the Victory gas field is situated in the shallow water of 158 meters. Texaco discovered this field in 1977 and the environmental statement for its development was submitted in early July 2022.
Shell’s acquisition of the Victory gas development came after the UK government disclosed its plans to accelerate various energy projects in late September 2022, including this one. The first gas was previously slated for the fourth quarter of 2024.
Aside from making arrangements to sell its Nigerian onshore subsidiary, the UK oil major also recently joined a long line of companies, which decided to steer clear of the Red Sea shipping route in response to rising Houthi vessel attacks.
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