La Terre Heritage Well Decommissioning

A new safer approach to plugging and abandonment

As the Gulf Coast inland areas steadily diminish, many historic plugs are becoming visible above the sediment line. This causes an environmental risk and navigational hazard. Anderson was retained to re-plug the La Terre well located in the Terrebonne Parish of Louisiana. This project presented the very difficult challenge of accessing the wellhead which was situated in water too deep for land equipment but too shallow for traditional barge-mounted equipment. Common practices at the time for decommissioning such wells included building a caisson around the wellhead and pumping out the entrapped water. This resulted in a muddy, slippery working area below sea level, within a dangerous confined space while dealing with wellhead pressures, surrounded by water and seriously dangerous wildlife.

Anderson pioneered a new approach that proved to be successful and much safer. Anderson engineered a customized barge, which would allow workers and equipment to access the wellhead from above without needing to remove any water from the site. This innovation has since been used on other projects and represents another way Anderson is a leader in the oil and gas industry.

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