Dry gas produced by the Shearwater platform currently flows via the Shearwater Elgin Area Line (SEAL) pipeline to Bacton, on the east coast of England. In this latest investment, the Shearwater platform will be modified and a 23 mile (37 kilometre) pipeline from the Fulmar Gas Line (FGL) to Shearwater installed, enabling wet gas to flow into the Shell Esso Gas and Associated Liquids (SEGAL) pipeline.

The gas will initially be processed at the St Fergus plant in Scotland prior to onward transmission of natural gas liquids (NGLs) to the Fife Natural Gas Liquids plant (FNGL) and Fife Ethylene Plant (FEP) at Mossmorran where they will be separated and exported to customers.

“This is part of our strategy to grow our gas production from around the Shearwater platform and it underscores Shell’s commitment to maximising the economic recovery of oil and gas from the North Sea,” said Steve Phimister, Shell’s Vice President for Upstream in the UK.

“Through close collaboration with our partners and suppliers, we have been able to reduce costs, simplify the production process and create an important production hub at Shearwater. Fifty years after Shell began working in the North Sea, we continue to invest in projects to deliver more gas to UK consumers for years to come.”

Shell has been working on the ‘Central Graben strategy’, which links fields such as Fram and Arran back to the Shearwater platform hub. The strategy will see a simplification of the production process on Shearwater while maximising the value of wet gas flowing into the SEGAL system and on to the FNGL and FEG plants at Mossmorran.

At peak production, the wet gas export capacity of the Shearwater hub is expected to be around 400 million standard cubic feet of gas a day, which equates to approximately 70,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

The Shearwater gas infrastructure hub follows the decision to develop the Penguins fields in the northern North Sea, the BP operated Alligin field west of Shetland, the Fram, Arran and Gannet E fields along with the Gannet Export infrastructure investment in the central North Sea.

Notes to Editors:

  • The Shearwater platform is located about 140 miles (225 kilometres) east of Aberdeen.
  • Discovered in 1988, the field was first developed in 2000 and is a joint venture between Shell (28% and operator), ExxonMobil (44.5%) and BP (27.5%)
  • Final investment decisions were previously announced by Shell for the Fram field in June 2018 and for the Arran field in October 2018.
  • The SEAL pipeline will continue to operate with gas flowing from the Elgin Franklin field for processing at Bacton in Norfolk.

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