Thursday, June 13, 2024

Final stage of oil field decommission begins

The 117m construction support vessel, Sapura Constructor (pictured), has arrived in New Plymouth ahead of the removal of the last of the Tui Oil Field’s infrastructure.

Its arrival signals the final stage of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Tui Project, which was set up in 2020 to decommission the oil field, 50km off the Taranaki coast.

MBIE’s Tui Project Director, Lloyd Williams welcomed the Sapura Constructor’s arrival.

“We are delighted that the Sapura Constructor will soon be docking at Port Taranaki in preparation to complete the final stage of the decommissioning,” Mr Williams said.

“Over the next four to six weeks, Sapura Energy Australia will recover 4 mid-water arches that sit about 60m below surface. The two remaining wellheads will also be recovered from the seabed.”

Six other wellheads were severed and removed last year.

“Removing these last pieces of equipment from the seabed will fulfil the objectives of our decommissioning plan. We look forward to bringing this 4-year project to a close,” Mr Williams said.

Te Kāhui o Taranaki (Taranaki Iwi) has been a partner in the Tui Project since it began.

“We welcome the Sapura Constructor to Taranaki for the final phase of this Project. We, along with the hapū of Ngāti Kahumate, Ngāti Tara, Ngāti Haupoto and Ngāti Tuhekerangi, work closely with the Tui Project team,” said Te Kāhui o Taranaki Tumuwhakarito (Chief Executive), Wharehoka Wano.

“This is important work, and it’s crucial it’s done right. Our priority as kaitiaki is to ensure no harm comes to the taiao and that our important cultural resources are protected and enhanced.”

Each stage of the Tui Project has provided local job and business opportunities. This stage of work is expected to involve about a dozen local businesses that provide crewing, logistics, engineering, transportation and specialist equipment and services.

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