Three Percent of UK North Sea Output Lost Due to Elgin

Three Percent of UK North Sea Output Lost Due to Elgin

Around three percent of the UK North Sea's gas output is being lost as a result of the continued shut-in of the Elgin field, UK Energy Minister Charles Hendry said Friday.

Also on Friday, Total UK Managing Director Philippe Guys told a news conference in Aberdeen that more than a month ago, on February 25, the firm started observing irregular pressure on the plug on the G4 well on the Elgin field. Guys said that the company responded with days to regulate the pressure in the well.

Meanwhile, the drilling of a relief well could begin within 10 days should Total deem it the best way to tackle the leak, Guys added.

On Thursday evening, the UK's Department of Energy and Climate Change revealed that Total was mobilizing two rigs in efforts to halt the leak. And at Friday's new conference, Guys confirmed this.

"With respect to stopping the leak, we have launched two main actions which we are progressing in parallel. The first is to carry out the well kill operations using a floating support; the second is to drill two relief wells and, to that end, we have suspended operations on two of our drilling rigs in order to make them available for work on the relief wells," Guys said.

Total had previously revealed it may have identified the source of the gas leak that caused it to evacuate staff from the Elgin platform last Sunday. On Thursday, a spokesperson for the firm told Rigzone: "We believe the hydrocarbons are coming from a rock formation above the reservoir at a depth of 4,000 meters (13,120 feet)."

Alexis Flynn of Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this report

A former engineer, Jon is an award-winning editor who has covered the technology, engineering and energy sectors since the mid-1990s. Email Jon at


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