Since the occurrence of such incidents as “Montara”, “Macondo” and “Elgin Franklin” in the industry, there has been a reevaluation of the standards and regulations utilised by the well operators. Updates and changes have occurred in both standards, as formulated by industry bodies, and regulations, formulated by governmental regulators. These changes are, in turn, affecting how well integrity and its management is undertaken by well operators. This session will review some of the changes that have taken place in the industry in different geographical and operating areas. This will be followed by a general discussion as to whether or these measures are onerous, sufficient, or inadequate.
A well is designed and engineered to withstand anticipated stresses based on hazards assessment. A well design must also ensure well integrity sustainable throughout it life cycle. In order to achieve sustainable well integrity throughout the life cycle of the well some key design elements should be taken into consideration so that common well integrity issues such as sustained casing pressure, failure of zonal isolation or barrier, barrier deterioration over time and corrosion can be avoided. It is a complex undertaking which involves understanding the subsurface complexity and hazards, assessing the risk and engineering the design while endeavoring to compensate for any prediction uncertainties. The ability to foresee potential well integrity issues is a valuable but rare skill that may help prevent well integrity issue.
Sustaining production is highly dependent on maintaining the integrity of the well. As more thoughts and practices are developed for new wells, the current well stock suffers from various integrity issues which may result in some wells being shut-in or idle. Sanding, scaling and corrosion are common sources of integrity issues for wellbore and surface equipment. Re-instating integrity to these wells requires a comprehensive understanding of the immediate integrity issues and mitigation of the future risks. This session will include discussions on available solutions, practices, systems and technologies on:
Barriers and well integrity go hand in hand and the latter requires the former to be verified at various stages throughout a well’s lifecycle. Barrier verification can begin with initial well-equipment selection/qualification, testing during well construction, monitoring during production and continues through to confirmation at abandonment.
Along these lines, this session will look at how barriers are identified, qualified, tested and confirmed throughout the lifecycle of a well.
Well integrity monitoring and management is essential in the profitable development of oil and gas resources while minimising health and environmental effects. A strategic approach to minimize design and operational risks resides in good well integrity management throughout the whole life cycle: design, drilling and completion, production, interventions, workover, and finally abandonment. A robust monitoring system forms an essential part of the data collection process to allow effective decision making to occur in a timely manner. This session will focus on some of the current processes being utilised to effectively monitor and manage well integrity from data acquisition to decision making. In addition, attention will also be placed on some of the best practices and lessons learnt from documented field examples.
Changes in the regulatory environment are driving behavior from ‘tell me’ to ‘show me’. As more evidence is required to demonstrate that risks have been identified and are being managed As Low As Reasonably Practicable (ALARP), a ‘one size fits all’ approach is increasingly being replaced by a tailored solution, with each well lifecycle stage having its own challenges. The question to be asked is how to ensure that all risks have been identified and quantified, and that the mitigation and quality of the supporting data are sufficient? This session will look at the risk assessment process at the different stages of lifecycle well integrity: the risk assessment methods that may be used, the supporting data requirements (and how uncertainty in these is dealt with) and how changes that affect well integrity are managed.
Subsea wells are operated remotely and are designed, operated and maintained in accordance with the accessibility limitations of deepwater to shallow water and exposures to the environments. The risk of in appropriate operating philosophy or misinterpretation of the information for integrity analysis may lead to failure and loss of containment or early and costly interventions to restore well operating envelope.
“What do we do with what we’ve got?”
Industry best practices keeps evolving over the years, and new technologies, products and processes, ideas are constantly being introduced, developed or sometimes borrowed from other industries to address well integrity issues in the upstream oil and gas industry. Whether it is prevention, or detection of problems, or real time and remote monitoring, or diagnosis and implementation of repairs, or even providing inputs to prediction models, they definitely help in improving over the current understanding and management of well integrity issues. This session will focus on such new technologies and applications and also discuss some lessons learnt so far and what next.