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Autonomous marine environmental monitoring: Application in decommissioned oil fields

Jones, Daniel O.B.; Gates, Andrew R.; Huvenne, Veerle A.I.; Phillips, Alexander B.; Bett, Brian J.. 2019 Autonomous marine environmental monitoring: Application in decommissioned oil fields. Science of The Total Environment, 668. 835-853. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.02.310

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Abstract/Summary

Hundreds of Oil & Gas Industry structures in the marine environment are approaching decommissioning. In most areas decommissioning operations will need to be supported by environmental assessment and monitoring, potentially over the life of any structures left in place. This requirement will have a considerable cost for industry and the public. Here we review approaches for the assessment of the primary operating environments associated with decommissioning — namely structures, pipelines, cuttings piles, the general seabed environment and the water column — and show that already available marine autonomous systems (MAS) offer a wide range of solutions for this major monitoring challenge. Data of direct relevance to decommissioning can be collected using acoustic, visual, and oceanographic sensors deployed on MAS. We suggest that there is considerable potential for both cost savings and a substantial improvement in the temporal and spatial resolution of environmental monitoring. We summarise the trade-offs between MAS and current conventional approaches to marine environmental monitoring. MAS have the potential to successfully carry out much of the monitoring associated with decommissioning and to offer viable alternatives where a direct match for the conventional approach is not possible.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.02.310
ISSN: 00489697
Date made live: 18 Mar 2019 16:07 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/522581

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