BP Shuts Clair Production Platform on Oil Leak

Published at 03:00PM - 03/10/16

BP was forced to shut down production from its Clair platform on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) following an oil leak caused by a technical fault.

The platform located 75 kilometres (46.6 miles) west of Shetland is now under investigation and monitoring following the fault that occurred at 10 am on Sunday.

No injuries have been reported and the leak has already been halted, the company said in a statement.

BP Shuts Clair Production Platform on Oil Leak

According to a statement sent from BP by email, the incident was the result of a technical issue with the system designed to separate the mixed production fluids of water, oil and gas.

BP explained further that the release was stopped within an hour after the issue was identified and after Clair production was taken offline.

“We are investigating the cause of the technical issue and the field will remain offline until the investigation is concluded,” BP said in a statement.

BP Shuts Clair Production Platform on Oil Leak
Clair Ridge platform topsides being installed

Meanwhile, oil spill and environmental experts from BP, Oil Spill Response Limited and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have been working together to assess any potential impacts from the incident.

“At present, we believe the most appropriate response is to allow the oil to disperse naturally at sea, but contingencies for other action are being prepared”, BP added.

Clair Field to Produce 640 million BPD

The Clair platform came on stream in 2005, with oil exported from the field through a dedicated oil pipeline, while gas is exported through the West of Shetland (WoSP) pipeline, both to the Sullom Voe terminal.

A second phase of development of the field is also currently under construction, with a planned capacity to produce 640 million barrels over 40 years, reaching a peak production of up to 120,000 barrels per day (bpd).

The Clair field comprises four licenses and six blocks and is owned by BP, Royal Dutch Shell, ConocoPhillips and Chevron.