Well Plugging and Abandonment (P&A)

Management and Information


This course is an introduction to the new and growing discipline of well abandonment. This course introduces the complex cross-disciple nature of well plugging and abandonment. The course is a mixture of presentations, discussion, videos, animations and workshop exercises.

Topics discussed:

  • Objectives of well abandonment
  • Overview of historical and global activity and performance
  • Impact of law and regulation and other key drivers
  • Abandonment standards and their application
  • Decision making processes
  • The applicability of rigless alternatives
  • Cost estimation processes and the identification of risk
  • Cost control options

Technical Agenda

Day 1
Day 2

Learning Level

Introductory, Intermediate

Course Length

2 Days

Why Attend?

Well plugging and abandonment (P&A) is a rapidly developing market sector in the petroleum business, with major potential and major risks. Well P&A is a source of major liability for counties, operators, contractors and the public, which must be understood if it is to be managed cost effectively.

Delegates will be introduced to the fundamentals of well abandonment with the objective of understanding the following:

  • The primary objectives of abandonment
  • The impact of law and regulation and the importance of understanding the range of potential applications of these
  • The range of design standards currently in use and how to apply these to meet the objectives of abandonment at minimum cost
  • The concept of an ‘Abandonment Barrier’
  • The importance of identifying unknowns and uncertainties to minimise potential cost overruns
  • The principles of good practise in cost estimation
  • The importance of recognizing the potential cost impact of technical risks and uncertainties
  • The options for and limitations of rigless abandonment of platform and subsea wells
  • The key principles of good cementing practice
  • The key aspects of controlling abandonment costs

In addition, the delegates will become familiar with the design and cost estimation processes through undertaking tutorial examples.

Who Should Attend

This introduction to intermediate level course is for engineering managers, well P&A engineers, environmental managers, HSE managers, regulators, accountants, governance, managers, insurance brokers, lawyers, professionals involved with economic evaluations, forecasting, and economic decisions in the upstream oil and gas business.


Engineers are responsible for enhancing their professional competence throughout their careers. Licensed, chartered, and/or certified engineers are sometimes required by government entities to provide proof of continued professional development and training. Training credits are defined as Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or Professional Development Hours (PDH).

Attendees of SPE training courses earn 0.8 CEUs for each day of training. We provide each attendee a certificate upon completion of the training course.

In-House Training

This course is available for in house training at your office location.

Contact Us
Email inhousetraining@spe.org
Americas +1.972.952.1155
Asia Pacific +60.3.2182.3000
Canada +1.403.930.5454
Middle East and North Africa +971.4.457.5875
United Kingdom +44.20.7299.3300


Peter Behrenbruch

Tom Leeson has over 25 years of experience in well operations and more than 12 years of experience in well abandonment. Responsibilities have included the development and implementation of rigless techniques for both platform and subsea wells, and project management of several offshore projects both with and without a rig. Tom has experienced the regulations and the working environments in UK, Norway, Angola, Brazil, Australia, Indonesia, and many other countries. Tom’s areas of expertise range from initial well reviews and cost estimation through strategic project planning to project team set-up, project management of operations.

Brian Twomey is responsible for decommissioning and abandonment operations planning, engineering, peer review work, cost analysis, and strategic work in well P&A. Brian has worked on oil and gas facilities decommissioning onshore, offshore, subsea issues for over 33 years, and well P&A for over six years. He has carried out studies and worked on over 780 offshore installations worldwide and has written decommissioning and well abandonment guidelines for 12 countries. Brian has presented over 100 papers and over 40 workshops on all aspects of decommissioning, as well as given numerous public and private training courses on the subject.