Total has identified the possible source of the Elgin gas leak; the leaking hydrocarbons are believed to be entering the well from a rock formation, which is situated above the Elgin reservoir, which has been safely plugged for over a year. The Elgin reservoir is at 5500 m, while the leaking formation is located at 4000 m. As a result the company cannot say for sure how much gas and condensates are in the formation and how much could potentially leak out.
There is a three mile exclusion zone in place and all staff have been safely evacuated from the Elgin platform, the nearby Rowan Viking drilling rig has also been evacuated. Total have now mobilised resources and brought in international experts to help with efforts to plug the leak, but it may be necessary to drill a relief well, which could potentially take months.
Written by Peter Farrell
Read the article online at: https://www.oilfieldtechnology.com/drilling-and-production/30032012/totals-elgin-platform-leak-identified/