Oil and gas industry equipment provider Aquaterra Energy has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with service provider Oceaneering International Services to collaborate on decommissioning wells and to offer late-life solution packages to the North Sea oil and gas industry.

The companies will offer tools and services in platform well abandonment, subsea well abandonment, topside and jacket removals, and subsea removals. The companies aim to offer their specialist equipment and expertise to deliver successful decommissioning solutions.

Aquaterra Energy will contribute its expertise on engineering and project management and its equipment inventory, and Oceaneering will bring tools and services in cutting, severance, and dredging. They will be using Aquaterra Energy’s facilities in Great Yarmouth to initially focus on the southern North Sea.

Aquaterra managing director James Larnder told Offshore Technology: “We chose to partner with Oceaneering because they’re market leaders in the field and have an excellent track record. We have a very similar ethos and are also mutually beneficial for one another.”

Oceaneering senior manager for the UK, Europe, and Africa Leigh Martin, said: “Partnering with Aquaterra Energy in the decommissioning sector offers the market a trusted established alternative that provides superior value supported from local facilities.”

In a press statement released today, Larnder said: “This collaboration with Oceaneering has been driven by a customer need for more complete solution players in the market. It’s not hard to see why: more than £15.2bn will be spent on decom in the UKCS over the next decade, with 2,379 wells expected to be decommissioned in the North Sea over the next ten years. We’re ready to tackle this challenge alongside Oceaneering and offer a seamless solution to clients.”

The two companies attended a southern North Sea decommissioning event this morning hosted by the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA). Larnder told Offshore Technology: “OGA aim to have a 33% cost reduction and they want to do that by finding smarter ways of doing things. They were very excited to hear about the collaboration between Oceaneering and Aquaterra. The fact that we’re offering Oceaneering a local platform to deliver decommissioning solutions in the Southern North Sea created a huge amount of interest at the showcase this morning.”

Aquaterra is also developing a new decommissioning and late-life conductor retrieval system that will be used later this year.

Larnder told Offshore: “The new decommissioning and late-life conductor retrieval system is an extension of some of our existing products that we have on the market. We’ve gotten to the engineering phase, we have an animation, we have a video, and we’re taking that to our customer-base to show why it’s better than anything currently existing and why it’s going to add value to the decommissioning operations.”

The companies are now actively beginning the process of decommissioning. Lardner informed Offshore Technology that there are meetings and presentations lined up and that Oceaneering has already got equipment ready to showcase to the industry.

Larnder said: “The collaboration is here, it’s real, we’ve got equipment, Oceaneering has office space within our office to host meetings with clients, and we’re going to be really targeting the North Sea operations.”