Cromarty Firth Oil Platform Cemetery
In the remote harbor in the north of Scotland, between two steep promontories are dozens of old oil platforms. They have been idle for several decades, quietly waiting for the hour when the drilling of offshore oil will again become profitable.
Cromarty Firth Port Authority (CFPA) was founded in 1972 as a dry dock for the repair and assembly of oil platforms operating in the North Sea. This region covers the shallow waters of Great Britain, Norway, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands, being one of the most active coastal drilling zones in the world. Once, hundreds of drilling platforms could be observed here, but these times are over. With the constant decrease in oil prices, many oil companies have decided to suspend work, still hoping for a further increase in prices. You can read about the era of cheap oil in a separate collection.
Instead of dismantling the oil platforms, these companies towed them away from the open sea to the safe harbor of Cromartie Firth. Here you can save the platform for a long time and again put into the sea, as soon as the economy will turn in their favor. Some of these rigs are still operational. On board is a special team that supports the basic mechanisms of an expensive installation. Other platforms are closed completely, and some of them have already become unusable and turned into scrap metal.
According to Bloomberg, only 63 percent of oil and gas drilling rigs in the North Sea were in use as of January 2016. Due to lower energy prices, most drillers stopped the most expensive projects. According to analysts, about 150 oil platforms will be withdrawn from British waters over the next 10 years. While thousands of people in the oil industry lost their jobs, oil platforms ultimately benefited Cromartie Firth. The port has recently built a new pier for 25 million, it is also planned to build new processing plants, where local residents will be involved.