Oil and Gas News

Valaris rig arrives in Marlborough Sounds

Marlborough Sounds

A drilling rig destined for the Māui B gas field in New Zealand arrived in Marlborough Sounds on Wednesday, 12 January. 

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment advised that the rig, the Valaris JU-249, would be offloaded in Admiralty Bay before being shipped to the Māui B platform off the Taranaki Coast to carry out development drilling. 

The rig is being operated by OMV and has been transported to the bay to take advantage of deep water and sheltered conditions. 

According to the Ministry of Business, the rig is likely to stay in the Marlborough Sounds for a couple of days before heading north. 

In a statement, OMV said the Valaris 249 jack-up rig would be used to “redevelop the mature Māui field and ensure continued supply for the NZ industrial and domestic market”.

The rig’s arrival in the Marlborough Sounds has caused some unrest in the region as some bodies have described the continued investigation into new reserves as “irresponsible”. 

Adam Currie of Greenpeace announced that despite they had no plans to protest the unloading of the drilling rig, he could not rule out action towards the rig in the future.

OMV responded that the additional investment in the field would help the electricity industry provide power when renewable energy sources couldn’t with lower emissions than coal.

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