Abrado Wellbore Services, the specialist global, expandable section milling plug and abandonment service technology company, has secured a multi-million dollar contract from Chevron’s Environmental Management Company to support the plug and abandonment (P&A) of more than 30 wells offshore California.
The mature wells, which lie in Federal waters approximately 12 miles off the Californian coast, are exhibiting sustained casing pressure to varying degrees. Some of the wells require dual string remediation for permanent P&A.
The multi-year contract is the largest single contract won by Abrado in its 10-year history. The company will provide section milling using its proprietary Medusa® VS variable stabilised dual string technology, comprehensive fishing services and real time downhole video diagnostics to support the operation under its IOV (Investigate, Operate, Validate) contract concept.
Abrado has supported Chevron and other super major operators in the Gulf of Mexico on numerous P&A projects since 2016 and the company will transfer its knowledge and proven expertise from the Gulf to California for this latest campaign.
“Plugging and abandoning these wells in a responsible way from an environmental perspective is of paramount importance to us. Section milling the casing, creating a solid 360-degree circumferential rock-to-rock barrier across the wellbore and visually validating the work through downhole video is the most accurate and effective method for operators to permanently plug and abandon a well. We believe this method offers a high degree of confidence and risk mitigation,” says Abrado chief executive officer, Sandy Esslemont.
Plugging and abandoning the Californian wells will present several challenges in dealing with any sustained casing pressure. Some of the dual section milled windows will be greater than 100 feet long to provide increased rock to rock sealing and cement plug assurance.
Esslemont said advances in section milling technology had sparked somewhat of a renaissance in the process for surgically removing multiple casing strings at critical depths in the well – where operators now have confidence in a viable solution for permanent, verifiable and environmentally responsible P&A.
“Multi-string section milling is a relatively recent process, but tool quality and project time have improved dramatically over a very short period. We are busier now than we’ve ever been because more operators are aware of the technique’s benefits. The California campaign is the latest step in our development and, along with other recent successful projects in the Gulf of Mexico, enhances our ambition to become a pre-eminent supplier to the global oil and gas community,” Esslemont adds.