Centrica Storage Limited (CSL) used to store gas in our Rough gas field, located 29km (18 miles) from the coast and 2.7km below the seabed, on behalf of a large number of customers including utilities, gas, traders and gas producers. Today, we are in the process of producing the indigenous gas on behalf of Centrica plc. and planning for decommissioning.
Rough gas field and our offshore and onshore operations
CSL have two offshore platforms located on the Rough gas field - 47/3 Bravo and 47/8 Alpha (the figures refer to the North Sea licensing block numbers which identify where the fields are located).
Onshore, we have a gas processing terminal at Easington and our head office is based at Hessle, near Hull.
47/3 Bravo is CSL’s main manned complex. It is split into three separate bridge-linked platforms and operates 24 wells. It is manned all year round. 47/3 Bravo withdraws gas from the wells as a vapour and it is then piped through a 900 mm (36inch) subsea pipeline to its Easington Terminal where the gas undergoes several separation processes before being sent into the National Transmission System (NTS), which is used to transport the gas throughout the UK before it reaches peoples’ homes. The terminal can handle > 900 million standard cubic feet of gas per day.
47/8 Alpha, which was the original installation and produced the first gas from Rough, is now an unmanned Cold Stacked platform. Cold stacking is a widely used industry term that describes a gas platform that has no hydrocarbons and is isolated, shut down and unmanned. Autonomous Navigational Aids are used to safeguard shipping.
Karl Andre Photography
In August 2018, CSL were awarded a contract by the Tolmount joint venture and infrastructure partners (Premier Oil, Dana Petroleum and Humber Gathering System Limited (HGS)), to process gas from the Tolmount field in the Southern North Sea. The contract will extend the life of the gas terminal at Easington until at least 2030.
Modifications are being made to the Terminal so that it can receive and process the gas from the Tolmount field, which will arrive through a new gas pipeline. CSL will start to process the gas in winter 2020, when the field is scheduled to come on stream. The field is scheduled to produce gas for 10 to 15 years. A joint venture between Premier Oil and Dana Petroleum, the Tolmount gas field has an estimated 500 billion cubic feet of gas reserves. It could produce up to 300 million cubic feet of gas per day, enough to supply around 2.75 million homes.
A brief history of Centrica Storage Limited
- 1960s – Licences for the Rough field were awarded to Gulf Oil, the Gas Council, Amoco Group, Amerada Hess and North Sea Inc
- 1970s – Rough offshore facilities and Easington terminals were developed to produce and process gas from the Rough gas field
- 1980s – BG Corporation (which became British Gas in 1986 following privatisation) purchased the Rough field with about one-third of the reserves depleted
- 1983/4 – British Gas decided to convert the field in to a natural gas storage facility
- 1985 – The gas storage facility became operational, enabling gas to be stored in the reservoir some 2,700 meters under the seabed
- 1997 – BG Storage was established as a stand-alone business (it was separated from the rest of the British Gas plc for competition reasons)
- 2001 – BG Storage sold Rough Storage to Dynegy
- 2002 – Centrica acquired the Rough storage assets from Dynegy for £304m
- 2003 – After a Competition inquiry into the acquisition, Centrica provided the Department of Trade and Industry of Ofgem with a set of Undertakings. Centrica Storage Limited (CSL) was created as a separate business unit. It became a wholly owned subsidiary of Centrica plc.
- 2018 – The Rough field returned back to a production facility and the Undertakings were removed