Postponement of heavy lift vessel selection pays off

Heavy lift vessel selection in decomissioning projects


Author: Bram van Oirschot, Business Unit Manager "Integrated Projects" Conbit

Delaying contracting to vessel owners makes decommissioning more economical. The disadvantage of limiting your campaign to a particular type of vessel is that decom teams end up being dependent on major heavy-lift contractors. The more dependent you are, the less you benefit from the market for associated services. Platform owners thus lose control over the decom project and the threat of budget overruns is always present.

A typical decommissioning project starts with studying the situation and applying for permits. Then the question of which decommissioning method to use soon arises. Comparative analysis of decommissioning methods is easy to manage. A project team is motivated to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of piece-small decommissioning, reverse installation, single lift or any other removal method. The results are reported to the management briefing using attractive graphics. To generate these images and to provide supporting evidence for the budget, the heavy lift contractors are asked for input. Other decommissioning methods (e.g. piece-small) are hard to budget in the initial project phases; therefore, the heavy lift contactors already have a head start.

Budgeting removal methods that do not depend on scarce marine assets is a challenging exercise. For accurate budgeting, those responsible must have a great deal of offshore experience. These field experts should be able to translate their experience into budgeting. The involved risks and opportunities have to be quantified in order to understand the conclusions. The type of experience of the field experts presents an additional challenge, which is often related to conservative techniques. In addition, their expertise is often related to a specific heavy lift contractor.

The independence of the advice is critical to the overall decommissioning project and can be guaranteed by postponing contracting to vessel owners. As a consultant, Conbit is able to support you with a comparative analysis of all methods available on the market. Consultants do not pursue turnkey projects and are therefore able to advise you more objectively.

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