A song of ice and oil | 337 (July 2017)

LUKOIL shares its Zero Discharge principle with Norwegian HSE experts.

2017-07-25 10:17 Views 1088

LUKOIL shares its Zero Discharge principle with Norwegian HSE experts.

Olav Knutsen

Leonid Surguchev

Elena Vashchenkova

In 2011 LUKOIL became the first Russian oil company to pre-qualify as an operator on the Norwegian continental shelf. In 2013 the company successfully took part in the 22nd licensing round held by Norway's Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and acquired a non-operator interest in two exploration licenses in the Norwegian sector of the Barents Sea, PL 708 and PL 719. This would further qualify LUKOIL in the subsequent 23rd licensing round, which resulted in being awarded an interest in Barents Sea PL 858 (see Oil Journal, April 2017).

Membership in the so-called BaSMIN and BaSEC projects was central to LUKOIL’s success in developing its qualifications in Norway. Both projects seek to develop common solutions for a joint operator approach to Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) in Norway’s sector of the Barents Sea; these include standardizing safety and emergency preparedness and data sharing.

LUKOIL shares its Zero Discharge

Data analysis in the Barents Sea - BaSMIN

The BaSMIN project’s purpose is to understand the effects of environmental forces on future offshore fixed and floating installations. Early acquisition of data in frontier regions is key to reducing risk for operators which, in turn, offers potential cost savings. Examples include appropriately selecting drilling assets for the metocean (an abbreviation of “meteorology” and “oceanography”) regime and optimizing the timing of drilling campaigns. LUKOIL joined BASIM in 2016 and is represented on its Steering Committee. Fourteen oil and gas companies are members of BaSMIN.

Statoil initiated the BASMIN project in 2016 with the aim of acquiring ice and metocean data in the Barents Sea and contracted the main work to FUGRO UK. In the previous year, robust Fugro-manufactured Wavescan buoys, ideally suited for the conditions of the Barents Sea, were deployed at offshore sites between Hammerfest and Svalbard, and are now widely deployed in the Barents Sea. The buoys are collecting raw data on everything from waves, currents, ice thickness and water levels to specific meteorological and seawater parameters. The data is stored within the instruments’ internal memories and downloaded at regularly scheduled intervals.

Real-time data is also displayed on a projectspecific website and is made accessible to clients via a secure log-in.

Environmental expertise - BaSEC

The purpose of BaSEC is to develop costeffective and environmentally sound solutions for exploration in the Barents Sea in both the short- and medium-terms. The work is concentrated in five main areas:

  • Metocean and ice.
  • Environment and oil spill response.
  • Logistics and emergency preparedness.
  • Mobile Offshore Drilling Units.
  • Health and working.

BaSEC was established by Statoil, Eni Norge, Engie (GDF Suez), Lundin and OMV in April 2015. LUKOIL joined BaSEC in 2016 and also has representation on its Steering Committee. In total, 18 oil and gas companies are members of BaSEC. They have key experience operating two licenses north of 73 °N.

LUKOIL shares its Zero Discharge

Sharing is caring

An important part of BaSMIN and BaSEC work is sharing best practices between members. This includes the contributions of in-house members to working groups and the organizations of various conferences and roundtables.

This year a round table discussion was arranged in Oslo at the Subsea Valley Conference to discuss LUKOIL’s approach to the development and implementation of environmentally sound policies and procedures.

LUKOIL’s Zero Discharge principle generated a large interest among the conference participants and external partners. The Zero Discharge principle prohibits the disposal of exploration and production waste offshore. All waste products, including contaminated rainwater, are collected in closed containers and taken onshore for decontamination and disposal.

The application of the Zero Discharge principle for offshore field development has been adopted by LUKOIL’s Management System, which includes the company’s own HSE policy and is aligned with Russian state regulations. Interestingly Russia’s regulations are sometimes more stringent and complex than Norway’s, where any facility that discharges wastewater must obtain a special discharge permit issued by the government and abide by international treaties and protocols.


LUKOIL also participates in the Arctic and Cold Climate Solutions Project (ACCS), implemented by Norwegian Energy Partners – a network-based organization, created to exchange experience and knowledge of market development internationally. This project is running for 3 years, from December 2015 to December 2018, and is aimed at delivering world class technology/solutions for Arctic and Cold Climate capital development projects, as well as related infrastructure and maritime activities, in Norway, Greenland, USA (Alaska), Canada, Russia and Kazakhstan (The Caspian sea). Emphasis is placed on ensuring coordinated focus at low cost and environmentally friendly solutions in the industry

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