Photo: FPSO Montara Venture; Source: Jadestone Energy

With FPSO remediation winding down, production restart from Australian field targeted for next month

With a review of its remediation plan for an FPSO operating on a field in the Timor Sea off Australia out of the way, the Singapore-headquartered Jadestone Energy is expecting to wrap up remaining works over the coming weeks and restart production from this field during next month.

Back in July 2022, a small leak of oil from a crude oil tank on the FPSO Montara Venture led to the shutdown of production from the Montara field off Australia. Following an interim repair of the leak point in the 2C tank, Jadestone restarted production from this field while a permanent repair was being advanced.  

Come August 2022, an additional internal defect in the water ballast 4S tank was detected during preparations for the permanent repair of the 2C tank, thus, the company decided to temporarily shut-in production from Montara and reorganise offshore manpower on the FPSO, enabling focus on maintenance and inspection crews.

As disclosed at the time, the inspection and repair activities were expected to result in production being shut in during the remainder of August and potentially through September 2022. However, when September rolled in, Jadestone confirmed that progress was made in implementing a remediation plan for the FPSO, but was unable to provide a date for the restart of production from the Montara field.

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In an update on Wednesday, Jadestone Energy reported that DNV’s independent review of its remediation plans and operational readiness for the FPSO Montara Venture had been completed and submitted to the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA). The company sees this as “a major step” toward restoring production at Montara.

According to the firm, all offshore activities associated with “the comprehensive programme” of the hull and tank inspection, repair and maintenance are anticipated to be completed to achieve operational readiness within weeks. In addition, work required as part of the planned maintenance programme for 2023 is being carried out in parallel with the tank activities. Therefore, Jadestone expects to restart production from the Montara field in February 2023.

The Jadestone-operated and owned Montara project, encompassing three separate fields – MontaraSkua and Swift/Swallow – is located in the Timor Sea offshore Australia approximately 690 kilometres west of Darwin.

Boosting Stag field output

Meanwhile, Jadestone confirmed that the Stag-50H and 51H wells were brought onstream in late 2022 at an aggregate initial rate of approximately 2,000 bopd, in line with expectations. The infill wells entailed drilling a combined horizontal section of approximately 3,200 metres.

The company highlighted that “the success of the 50H and 51H wells validates the Stag field development strategy and enhances confidence in several additional infill well locations which are already being developed for possible future drilling.”

Based on Jadestone’s statement, once the planned workover activity, which is currently underway, has been completed field production is expected to increase towards approximately 4,000 bbls/d.

Regarding Jadestone’s other activities elsewhere, it is worth noting that the firm decided in October 2022 to terminate a deal to acquire operatorship and interest in an oil field project off New Zealand.

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This decision was reached after no progress was made in obtaining regulatory approval almost three years after the acquisition was disclosed.