Nigerian independent oil and gas company, Seplat Energy, has announced the commencement of commercial injection of crude oil through the 67km Amukpe-Escrabos Pipeline, linking two points in the Niger Delta. The mostly underground pipeline connects Seplat Energy’s major assets – the oil mining licenses 4, 38, and 41 – from the Amukpe Liquids Storage Terminal to Chevron’s Escrabos Terminal. Additionally, the pipeline will provide a more reliable and secure export route for crude oil by using the Continuous Horizontal Directional Drilling method, which is designed to discourage vandalism.
With a capacity of 160,000 barrels of oil per day, 35,000 barrels of which will belong to Seplat Energy and Nigeria’s state-owned Nigerian Petroleum Development Company through a joint venture, the Amukpe-Escravos Pipeline will offer another export option for Nigeria’s oil sector, which has faced difficulties in recent years due to a lack of investment, oil theft, and vandalism.
“The commercial launch of the Amukpe-Escrabos Pipeline is a significant event for Seplat Energy and for Nigeria, offering a more secure and reliable export route that will assure higher revenues and profitability for Seplat Energy, enabling us to make a larger contribution to Nigeria’s economy,” stated Roger Brown, CEO of Seplat Energy.
Dewatering – removal of ground or surface water from the pipeline’s infrastructure – was completed on 29 July, with the Site Acceptance Test currently underway with commercial volumes.
“We commend the work that has made this possible and appreciate the efforts of our partners and all contractors involved to create this more reliable and secure export route for Nigeria’s oil,” Brown concluded.
Commercial operation of the pipeline will obviate the region’s dependence on the Trans Forcados Oil Pipeline System, which has been plagued by intermittent shutdowns in recent years, due primarily to maintenance and vandalism, thus impacting the company’s revenues.