Work completes on decommissioning of iconic North Sea oil rig

Energy giant Taqa has completed the decommissioning of a North Sea rig that had been producing oil for more than three decades.

Over its 33-year lifetime, Brae Bravo produced more than 500 million barrels of oil equivalent and is widely recognised within the industry as an iconic asset in the pioneering Brae fields.

Abu Dhabi-headquartered Taqa said it had completed the safe and successful removal of the Brae Alpha West drilling rig and the Brae Bravo upper main jacket.

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The operation, which was the latest in the firm’s extensive decommissioning programme, involved the removal and transportation of more than 12,000 tonnes of material from the Brae field in the UK North Sea. The operation was completed with zero health and safety incidents.

Prior to cessation of production in 2018, Brae Bravo produced more than 500 million barrels. Brae Alpha began production in 1983 and continues through to the present.

Donald Taylor, Taqa managing director for Europe, said: “Taqa’s extensive late-life portfolio positions us at the forefront of decommissioning in the UK. By adopting valuable lessons learned during last year’s successful Brae Bravo topside removal campaign, we are continuing to develop our skills and capabilities supporting the transition from operations to removals and disposal.

“The coming years offer some of the most interesting challenges and opportunities for our workforce and wider industry. Taqa is proud to pioneer this change while maximising the value of our assets and playing a valuable role in the energy transition.”

Taqa operates three platforms in the Brae Area in the central North Sea.

The operation was the latest in Taqa’s extensive decommissioning programme. Picture: Coen de Jong
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