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Elgin Leak

COMMENT BY A NORTH SEA PLATFORM EXPLORATION AND PRODUCTION EXPERT

John,

Something is very strange about the Elgin well head platform and the subsequent leak.  The media has made so much speculation that has little or no technical sense whatsoever.  The attached is a scan of the wellhead itself as published in the Aberdeen Press and journal on Saturday.

What you can see is the well casing and small holes in that casing, where gas and lots of what looks like wax, can be seen on the surrounding area.  I have not seen the well construction data but clearly the holes are part of the original design but exactly what function they have and for what purpose is only known to the in-house Total Engineers.

In order to be able to make statements to what has happen a much better knowledge is needed.  I know from experience that if the media don’t get any information they publish anything, most of which is incorrect or make connections to other issues which have no plausible connections at all.

E.g. Elgin leak could never be connected in anyway even loosely to the Corrib gas development in Ireland or any other issues.  HPHT gas/oil developments are unique and have taxed the best brains and Scientific knowledge available in the development implementation.  When these fields were initially discovered. Circa early 80’s they were classed as “unable to be developed”  Almost 20 years went by before and countless studies before either Total or Shell were confident enough to proceed with development.

The investigation into this well failure is of great interest to all Oil and Gas Professionals both current and retired but the present media hype is of little factual interest to anyone.

Regards

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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