Gassco Starts Up Gjoa Gas Pipe

First gas began to flow on October 10, through the Gjøa Gas Pipe (GGP) tying this Norwegian North Sea field and its Vega satellite to Britain's Far North Liquids and Associated Gas System (Flags).

The 28-inch line runs for 130 kilometers from Gjøa to the tie-in point with the Shell-operated Flags-pipeline, which will carry its rich gas to the receiving terminal at St. Fergus in Scotland. 

Gassco took over the operatorship of the GGP on 1 June, at the same time as the pipeline was incorporated in the Gassled transport system. 

This development is the first pipeline where the company has chosen to take direct operational responsibility for technical operations without support from a technical services provider. 

"Taking on a new pipeline calls for extensive planning of the operator change and the start-up of gas transport," noted Svein Birger Thaule, senior vice president for technical operation. "We've achieved this through good collaboration with development operator Statoil and platform operator GDF Suez. We'll be responsible directly for all operations of the GGP." 

The pipeline will initially be used to import gas from Flags for completion of the Gjøa platform, with exports from the latter starting when the platform is operational. Overall gas production capacity for Gjøa, which lies about 40 kilometers north of the Fram field, will be 17 million cubic meters per day. 

The combined Gjøa/Vega development involves several subsea templates tied back to a semi-submersible production and processing platform. Oil from the latter is due to be exported to the Mongstad terminal near Bergen via a new 50-kilometer pipeline tied into Troll Oil Pipeline II.