Brownfield allowance helps Thistle renewal

EnQuest PLC, London, has received a brownfield tax allowance to support redevelopment of Thistle oil field in the northern UK North Sea.

The allowance, which EnQuest said is among the first offered by the UK government, is part of a package of measures implemented last year to support offshore investment after a 2011 increase in tax rates on oil and gas producers (OGJ Online, July 5, 2011).

Enquest, formed in 2010 from UK North Sea assets of Petrofac Ltd. and Lundin Petroleum, is revitalizing the 60-slot steel Thistle platform, which handles production from Thistle and Deveron oil fields (OGJ Online, Mar. 10, 2010).

It says a 2007 seismic program identified attic oil and other potential in the highly faulted, multilayer field.

The company expects to increase recovery by 35 million boe and extend field life to 2025 or beyond by increasing water injection volumes and drilling new targets.

In 2011, EnQuest began installing electric submersible pumps in four wells and new power supply on the platform.

The company has refurbished and reactivated the platform’s drilling rig is upgrading topsides and the steel jacket, which was installed in 524 ft of water 275 miles northeast of Aberdeen in 1976.

Thistle produces light, low-sulfur oil with a low GOR. Production moves by pipeline to the Dunlin and Cormorant platforms, then to the Sullom Voe terminal in the Shetland Islands.

According to government data, Thistle produced an average 26,349 cu m/month of oil through October last year. Its peak production year was 1982 at 598,635 cu m/month.

EnQuest holds a 99% interest in Thistle and Britoil Ltd., 1%.

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