The Netherlands: Six Oil and Gas Firms Launch Joint Well Decom Campaign


Six oil and gas operators in The Netherlands, within the Nextep partnership, are working on a major campaign to decommission oil and gas wells as part of a single campaign. 

Nexstep, the Dutch association for decommissioning and reuse of oil and gas infrastructure, said Tuesday that cooperation in decommissioning can lead to significant efficiency improvements and cost savings, and added that this would be the first time that wells from different operators would be "removed" in a single campaign.

Nexstep describes itself as a collaborative umbrella organization that coordinates, facilitates, and seeks dialogue on the safe, clean and efficient removal of oil and gas infrastructure in the Netherlands.

“Over the past two years, the operators have been working on a first joint campaign within the Nexstep partnership, with the help of EBN and NOGEPA,” the association said, adding that a decision was made to start with a campaign for the removal of MLS (mud line suspension) wells, which are wells that were once drilled for exploration purposes, but never became producing wells.

“These wells are relatively simple or easier to remove than wells that are connected to a platform making these wells ideally suitable for a first campaign,” Nextep said.

This month, Nexstep said, NAM, Neptune Energy, ONE-Dyas, Petrogas, Total E&P Nederland, and Wintershall Noordzee issued a joint tender for the decommissioning of wells. 

This is the first time that wells from different operators will be removed together in one campaign, Nexstep said.

Jacqueline Vaessen, General Manager Nexstep: “It is great that we succeeded in setting up this joint campaign. Special working groups from the oil and gas companies have worked very hard to make this happen. If everything goes according to plan, the project will start this year. Such collaboration offers advantages, such as a greater effect of the learning curve due to the larger number of wells being removed. Nexstep will therefore continue to explore the possibilities for new joint campaigns together with the operators.”

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