"In recent years, the UK oil & gas industry has come under significant pressure. As Malcolm Webb, Chief Executive of Oil & Gas UK, said, “If the challenge facing our industry was significant when oil was at $110 per barrel, the scale of the issue has greatly escalated with the oil price collapse.”
Decommissioning is a developing industry and the number of decommissioning programmes submitted for consideration continues to grow. Careful legal consideration by in-house and external legal advisors and project managers with knowledge of the industry and its potential pitfalls is essential and may save parties millions from protracted litigation.
To date, no industry standard form contract for decommissioning project activities exists. Until industry standard terms do emerge, the commercial, practical and legal uncertainties associated with decommissioning offshore oil & gas installations are likely to make it an area beset with disputes. This article considers potential disputes arising arise out of delays in the decommissioning process.
This article has also been published in the Oil + Gas Monitor.
The authors are currently in the process of completing a focused chapter on decommissioning disputes that will be incorporated in the specialised Globe Law and Business volume titled "Oil and Gas Decommissioning"