In 2020, upstream producers in Saskatchewan were given the opportunity to apply for federal funding via the Accelerated Site Closure Program, assisting in the complete abandonment of their aging and inactive energy assets, while ensuring businesses were able to operate during the COVID downturn. The assets included wells, flowlines, pipelines, and facilities. The Saskatchewan government estimated that the equivalent of up to 8,000 inactive wells and facilities would be abandoned and reclaimed over the life of this program. Most companies would have aging flowlines and facilities that would require attention. This work is not glamorous and in historic years was not prioritized by operating companies.
When approached by an international oil and gas producer based in Calgary, with operations in Saskatchewan, Corrigal Consulting (Corrigal) knew the challenge the producer was facing.
Bruce Corrigal has a rich history in providing full consultation services helping producers support their integrity programs and ensuring regulatory compliance. The oil and gas company in question needed the expertise provided by Corrigal to manage their Accelerated Site Closure program which would start in May of 2020 and complete in December 2022, focused on identifying their highest risk inactive flowlines and pipelines, nominating these assets via the Integrated Resource Information System (IRIS), and then identifying preferred service companies to execute on the abandonment and site closure activities.
By following the federal guidelines, Corrigal was able to assemble a team of experts, along with a technology stack to execute on the producer’s identified 625 flowline abandonments and 8 Multi-well Battery Facilities. The facilities in question were once sight lines but for decades, abandoned and awaiting environmental reclamation and remediation.
The producer, prior to this project, had subscribed to GDM’s Converge application, knowing the tool’s ability to view detailed profiles for any pipeline, well, or facility including environmental incident attributes and information, pipeline summaries, elevation profile graphs, and risk profiles. Corrigal leveraged this technology for the success of his project.
Corrigal’s first task was to identify high risk, inactive flowlines and pipelines, which as all companies know, is not an easy task. It was immeasurably helpful to be able to layer key data on the Converge mapping interface to determine flowlines and pipelines that were situated within environmental sensitive areas, indigenous lands, minor and major water crossings, road crossings, and surrounding population densities.
Figure: Map layers in converge showing pipeline, facility, well, crosssing, transportation infrastructure data, and population density.
Converge’s ability to deliver clear, concise data was pivotal in the nomination phase and desktop review of the producer’s flowline and pipeline inventory. Having the ability to easily review historical production data was critical during the asset nomination process.
Following the asset nomination, the field staff further leveraged Converge daily when scouting these assets prior to abandonment activities. The mapping module helped determine issues or inconsistencies in the data and was used to troubleshoot at a field level. As errors were identified, Corrigal could update and correct the data within Converge. If they required support to correct or change flowline and pipeline mapping, GDM support was there to help.
During field execution Corrigal Consulting was able to field-validate flowline and pipeline data to better understand the assets in question and correct/update the inventory within Converge. This directly impacted the producer’s ability to make future decisions when it comes to operations and maintenance issues. And, having the ability to bulk update flowline and pipeline statuses as field work was completed was critical to ensuring the team was capturing all the field work and ensuring the data was as accurate as possible.
From evaluating assets for end-of-life nomination to project execution the entire project yielded great experience, resulting in the producer completing their Accelerated Site Closure Program. Corrigal completed the project on budget while emphasizing a safety-first mentality through the producer’s Life Saving Rules, which is something they can be proud of.
“As a consultant, aligning yourself with right tools and service determines the success of any project, and Converge was a big part of the project’s success. Not only was the tool user friendly and intuitive, but the GDM customer support team was also responsive and reliable.”
Please feel free to contact Corrigal Consulting for further information on their experience in leveraging GDM tools and services in the Accelerated Site Closure program, or to learn more about the importance of field-validation of your company’s flowline and pipeline data. Alternatively, you can access a free 7-day trial with Converge at any time and see how you can realize value on day one.