Russia Laying the foundations for Arctic exploration

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Gas production in Russia could pave the way for successful arctic drilling projects after new techniques helped improve efficiency during the region’s harsh winters.

The creation of Russia’s first Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant has meant overcoming a number of obstacles similar to those faced within the Arctic region – an increasingly attractive prospect as proven oil and gas reserves decline.

The success of the programme – which has seen the use of “big bore wells” cutting operating costs and increasing gas flow – is an example of how viable working in such harsh conditions can be.

Andrei Galaev, Chief Executive Officer, Sakhalin Energy Investment Company, the company running the first Russian LNG plant, which has an 800km network of onshore pipelines, said: “One of the biggest challenges facing the oil and gas industry is that there are less resources that could be easily developed. More frequently the industry is being forced further north and into drilling deeper to discover and extract hydrocarbons.

“It seems almost inevitable that Arctic exploration will take place and there are a lot of similarities between the challenges the industry will face there and what we have been doing at Sakhalin. Certainly the conditions offshore are as harsh as the subarctic ones and the experience Sakhalin Energy gets could be used by those who are looking to develop these barren areas.”

Now Mr Galaev is preparing to discuss his experiences and the innovative technologies applied in the severe natural and climatic conditions of the remote region with industry leaders at the Gastech Conference & Exhibition.

He will take the stage as one of the key speakers at the Centres of Technical Excellence (CoTEs) within the Project Delivery stream, on Monday 8th October, when he will provide a free talk on the technological challenges that had to be overcome.

Mr Galaev said: “Sakhalin Energy was the first in Russia to start developing shelf deposits with offshore platforms. The project and Sakhalin Energy activity are associated with progressive engineering and design, as well as unique, innovative technologies applied in the severe natural and climatic conditions of the remote region.”

He also highlighted the importance of ensuring the safety, reliability and integrity of projects, both to Sakhalin Energy and the industry as a whole as it looks to enter new frontiers.

Mr Galaev added: “We conduct our business in an ethically, socially and environmental responsible manner. And the company is recognised for this approach and its sustainable practices.”

 

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