Lloyd’s Register appoint industry veteran to lead asset management and decommissioning operations

Lloyd’s Register (LR) has appointed oil and gas industry veteran Steve Gilbert to lead its international asset management and decommissioning operations programme.

Mr Gilbert will be based in Aberdeen and brings a wealth of experience to the job, having spent more than 25 years in the industry including lengthy stints at Transocean.

He said a key issue for operators is deferral, concentrating resource and maintenance effort and spend where it is most required in order to minimise risk.

He added: “Assessing the cost of late life asset management and decommissioning for operators in the UKCS and everywhere else in the world, is a real challenge.

“These costs are heavily influenced by the nature of the asset, the status of the global and local market, changes in technology, local regulation and many other inflationary pressures.

“Making the right choice regarding decommissioning is a crucial decision.”

Mr Gilbert said a “typical” offshore installation with an operational life of 30 years has around approximately 50,000 maintainable equipment items.

During the asset’s lifetime in the region of 750,000 work orders will be generated, leading to some 9,000,000 hours of activity.

Mr Gilbert said: “In total this can represent a cumulative expenditure of up to £2billion and, with many facilities exceeding their original design life, the costs of maintenance can continue accumulating significantly beyond what was originally anticipated.”

“LR’s aim is to create better understanding for industry of the minimum that needs to done to achieve a safe and robust asset management plan and a cost-effective decommissioning process.

“It is important that solutions are not over-engineered or over compensated for in costly, unnecessary remedial activity that has little to do with compliance to standards or processes.

“Significant effort is being focused on the oil and gas industry right now to help those companies that want to seek out maximum efficiencies to realise better value and better performance, especially around in-depth asset knowledge, residual value determination and decommissioning cost liabilities. This approach using our expertise can lead to cost savings that encourage future investment in older fields making it easier for companies to compete in the market. It is an exciting time of opportunity for industry and for LR’ experts in this specialist area.”

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