Stena Spey rig

Stena rig plotting a course to final Kinsale location

PSE Kinsale Energy, a Petronas subsidiary, is preparing to move a Stena Drilling-owned rig to a final location, which is part of the decommissioning campaign of the Kinsale area gas fields located off Ireland.

Stena Spey rig; Source: Stena Drilling

The Stena Spey is performing the campaign off the South Coast of Ireland and the move is part of the subsea wells abandonment campaign. It started in mid-April 2021 following the arrival of the rig and is expected to run through to November 2021.

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The campaign involves three areas of operation. The first one was the Southwest Kinsale gas field (including Greensand location) where all wells have been completed. The second one, where the rig is currently located, is the Seven Heads gas field and the upcoming and final location is the Ballycotton gas field.

According to a marine notice from the Irish Department of Transport, the Stena Spey is currently operating at the Seven Heads gas field on well 48/24-5A and will re-locate to the Ballycotton area which consists of a single well (48/20-2) around 20 October 2021. In advance of the Stena Spey arriving at the Ballycotton location, the eight anchor mooring spread will be pre-laid at the well location, using the Maersk anchor handling vessels.

The anchor handling vessels that will accompany the rig throughout the entire campaign are the Maersk Maker, the Maersk Mariner, and the Siem Pearl. The rig will also retain its permanent standby vessel, VOS Pathfinder.

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After its arrival in the Ballycotton field, it is anticipated that the rig will continue to operate there until mid-November as a minimum, depending on operational progress. Following completion of activities in the Ballycotton area, the rig will relocate to Scapa Flow, Orkney as this will see all wells abandoned and the campaign completed.

PSE Kinsale Energy ceased gas production at the Kinsale area gas fields in July 2020, after 42 years of production. The decision to cease production was made due to depleting reserves.