Well Integrity / Well Decommissioning
Plugged and decommissioned wells have been recognized as one of the most possible leakage pathways for the migration formation fluids. Since improperly plugged and decommissioned wells can turn into potential leakage conduits for the migration of fugitive emissions to hydrologically isolated water-bearing zones which leads to contamination of overlaying groundwater aquifers and the surrounding environment.
Therefore, maintaining the integrity of the plugged wells is of the utmost importance to reduce the propensity of imposing the environmental risks to the groundwater/surrounding environment and to prevent the costly cement remedial jobs.
The oil and gas industry in Australia is about 100 years old and many assets are almost at the end of their lifecycles. The decommissioning wave is going to be an inevitable, evolving, and long-lasting business in Australia. Hence, Australia needs to plan strategies to manage this inevitable wave in near future.
The abandonment plans should be designed according to each well’s characteristics including but not limited to fluid type, and well mechanical conditions. Therefore, it is important to establish an inventory regarding the number of wells that are going to be decommissioned and their corresponding characteristics to be able to design decommissioning procedures strategically.
That is why we are assessing novel technologies in decommissioning, and assessing well integrity to improve Australia’s performance.