The Australian government has awarded a $325 million (Aus.) contract to UK-based Petrofac Facilities Management for the first stage of clean-up at the abandoned Laminaria-Corallina oil fields in the Timor Sea.
Stage one involves the disconnection of the Northern Endeavour FPSO from subsea equipment at the fields, which were abandoned when owner Northern Oil & Gas Australia entered liquidation in 2019.
The government has taken charge of cleanup but passed legislation in Federal Parliament this week to impose a temporary levy on the industry in Australia to recover the costs of removing infrastructure at the field and remediating the site, delivering on the government’s commitment that Australian taxpayers are not left footing the bill, according to Resources Minister Keith Pitt (OGJ Online, Dec. 14, 2020).
The legislation was passed despite disapproval from companies led by Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Shell, who were opposed to funding decommissioning of a site in which they were not involved.
Petrofac expects disconnection of Northern Endeavour to take about 18 months.