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Shell cleared to lift Brent Delta topside in one go

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 20.32.37Worlds biggest ship, Pioneering Spirit, formerly a Nazi named vessel, the Pieter Schelte, is cleared to lift Brent Delta topside in one go

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Screen Shot 2015-06-11 at 19.31.157 July 2015

Oil giant Shell is to press ahead with plans to remove the topside of the Brent Delta platform in a single lift after its decommissioning project was cleared by the UK government.

Shell will use a heavy-lift vessel to remove the 24,200-tonne structure once preparations have been completed.

Work has already started on strengthening the topside in anticipation of a 2016 lift.

UK ministers cleared the project following a 30-day public consultation.

The lift will be carried out by the Korean-built vessel Pioneering Spirit after “thorough preparations and weather assessments”, Shell said.

The topside is the part of the platform which houses the accommodation block, helipad and other operational areas.

Swiss-owned Pioneering Spirit has been in Rotterdam being fitted out with 16 giant beams which will be used for the lift.

If all goes according to plan, it will ship the topside structure to a special yard in Hartlepool for dismantling.

Shell is aiming to have 97% of the material recycled.

The Brent Delta platform, which is one of four located in the Brent field, is located 115 miles out to sea off Shetland.

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It has reached the end of its production life after 35 years.

Shell will in due course submit a second decommissioning programme for its remaining infrastructure in the Brent Field.

It includes Brent Delta’s gravity-based structure, three other platforms, 140 wells and 28 pipelines.

That programme will be subject to a separate consultation.

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