Cromarty Firth is first Scottish port to seek new N. Sea decommissioning permits

Port of Cromarty Firth
Port of Cromarty Firth

The Port of Cromarty Firth has become the first port to apply to the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) for decommissioning permits under the updated regulations.  This is part of their final preparations to attract these projects and the associated jobs to the area.  

The Pollution Prevention Control (PPC) Regulations were updated in 2012 to provide the highest level of environmental protection. 

Under the guidelines laid out by the legislative process, the Port lodged two applications (one under PPC and a second under the Radioactive Substances Act) with SEPA earlier this month.  It is anticipated the permits will be in place and the Port can begin welcoming decommissioning projects by September this year.

Investment in a new quayside at the Port’s Invergordon Service Base means the port has three berths and 80,000 square metres of laydown space ready to accept decommissioning projects from the September deadline.

Its location, existing infrastructure and experienced supply chain give the port a significant advantage in this growing market.  The harbour is one of the main Scottish ports capable of carrying out decommissioning work.

Port general manager Captain Calum Slater said: “The Cromarty Firth has an existing supply chain experienced in rig repair and maintenance projects, meaning the skills are already in place to tackle the dismantling and recycling of the largest oil and gas structures.  

“The Port is ideally located in the North Sea. Our status as a Trust Port, together with our proven environmental record, ensures platforms will be decommissioned in a way that meets the latest environmental standards

“We are already in discussions with customers who have structures to decommission and I can see the first of the new era coming to the Firth next year.”

“Other ports are aligning to a single contractor, but we’re doing the opposite to provide customers more flexibility and choice.  Our open port philosophy will allow any reputable client, operator or contractor to use the Port’s decommissioning licence. 

“The Port will work with these companies to ensure that all dismantling activities at the Invergordon Service Base are carried out to the highest standard.  The aim is to achieve the highest level of recycling and environmental protection. In accordance with our status as a Trust port.”

24 July 2017 

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