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Status on UK – Gas leak incident at Elgin platform in the North Sea

30 March 2012, 20h00 (Paris time) – Further to the gas leak incident on the plugged G4 production well on Elgin platform, the situation has been stable on site over the last five days and Total is now progressing with actions to stop the leak.


Total’s representatives met the UK Minister for Energy Mr. Charles Hendry on the 30th March to discuss the situation and speak of measures being taken by Total.

Mobilized resources and actions taken

The Group is progressing on actions to stop the leak. Two main solutions are being progressed. The first is to pump heavy mud directly into the well and the second is to drill relief wells to intervene at the source of the gas flow. The Group is mobilizing all means to allow these options to be implemented.

Total has two available drilling rigs under contract in the area, the Sedco 714 and the Rowan Gorilla V, which will be deployed for the drilling of relief wells.

Total’s Crisis Management Teams are located in Aberdeen, Paris and at the Group’s research center in Pau. Their primary objectives are to continue monitoring the incident, evaluate and implement solutions to stop the gas leak, as well as to coordinate work of the different entities, external parties and experts involved in the process.

Total holds regular expert meetings with, and receives many offers of assistance from, its partners on the field and operators of nearby production sites, for which the Group is very grateful. Cooperation and coordination with relevant UK authorities is ongoing.

Site situation is stable

The precise cause of the gas leak is still being investigated and efforts continue to bring it under control. While Total cannot make a direct measurement of the gas leakage rate, based on recorded data and reservoir modeling, its estimates are around 200 000 m3 of gas per day (about 7 Mcf/d).

The gas cloud is fairly small in size and prevailing winds are blowing it away from the platform and dispersing it. An exclusion zone around the platform has been set up by the UK authorities taking into account a wide safety margin.

The very thin sheen of condensates (less than one micron thick) which had formed itself toward the east of the platform is currently reducing due to progressive evaporation.

Total has observed that the size of the flare is diminishing.

For these reasons, the current impact on and risks for the environment are relatively low.

Total continues to actively monitor the situation by using satellites and surveillance spotter planes. Vessels are on standby in the vicinity of Elgin platform, in visual contact with the installation at all times. The Group is working in close cooperation with the UK department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

Further information

Total will continue to make regular updates on the situation.

 

Contacts

Isabelle DESMET - +33 (0)1 47 44 37 76
Charles-Etienne LEBATARD - +33 (0)1 47 44 45 91
Victoria CHANIAL - +33 (0)1 47 44 35 86
Aude COLAS DES FRANCS - +33 (0)1 47 44 47 05
Michaël CROCHET-VOUREY - +33 (0)1 47 44 81 33
Sandra DANTE - +33 (0)1 47 44 46 07
Christine de CHAMPEAUX - +33 (0)1 47 44 47 49
Hortense OURY - +33 (0)1 47 44 23 34
Florent SEGURA - +33 (0)1 47 44 31 38
Frédéric TEXIER - +33 (0)1 47 44 38 16
Anastasia ZHIVULINA - +33 (0) 1 47 44 76 29

 

11 Mar 13 08:30 United Kingdom: Total resumes production from the Elgin/Franklin area in the UK North Sea  
03 Aug 12 15:00 Elgin progress update - August 2012  
21 May 12 08:30 Elgin - Total confirms the success of the G4 well intervention  
16 May 12 11:15 Elgin leak stopped after well intervention  
15 May 12 10:30 Start of the well intervention operation to stop the Elgin leak  
10 May 12 18:10 Elgin gas leak : Weekly Update (May 4 - 10)  
04 May 12 17:40 Elgin gas leak: Weekly Summary (April 27 – May 4)  
26 Apr 12 16:05 Elgin gas leak: weekly summary (April 20-26)  
20 Apr 12 15:40 Elgin Weekly Progress Update (April 13 – 20)  
13 Apr 12 20:40 Elgin gas leak : Weekly Progress Update (6-13 April 2012)  
06 Apr 12 15:15 Elgin Platform visit confirms well intervention plans can proceed  
05 Apr 12 18:45 Next Steps To Stop The Leak Underway: Elgin Platform Safely Reboarded  
05 Apr 12 10:35 Elgin incident update  
02 Apr 12 18:30 Conference call update on Elgin incident  
02 Apr 12 13:00 Elgin gas leak: Total prepares operations to stop the leak  
31 Mar 12 12:20 Extinguishing of the flare on the Elgin platform  
30 Mar 12 18:30 Status on UK – Gas leak incident at Elgin platform in the North Sea  
30 Mar 12 13:30 Elgin incident update following press conference  
29 Mar 12 19:00 Status on UK – Gas leak incident at Elgin platform in the North Sea  
28 Mar 12 18:25 Elgin update 4 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
28 Mar 12 16:00 Elgin update 3 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
27 Mar 12 16:55 Status on UK – Gas leak incident at Elgin platform in the North Sea  
26 Mar 12 21:00 Elgin update 2 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
26 Mar 12 14:25 Elgin update 1 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
26 Mar 12 04:00 News Release 5 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
25 Mar 12 23:00 Press statement 4 - 25 March 2012 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
25 Mar 12 18:45 Press Statement 3 - 25 March 2012 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
25 Mar 12 16:45 Press Statement 2 - 25 March 2012 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
25 Mar 12 14:00 Press Statement 1 - 25 March 2012 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
25 Mar 12 13:45 Holding Statement 25 March 2012 - Total E&P UK Ltd  
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