Here are some pics of the first groundbreaking for the new TOTAL Gas Plant which will service the Laggan-Tormore gas fields to the west of Shetland. This is the start of construction for the access road that will head up and round the back of Sullom Voe Terminal (SVT) to the site of the new plant immediately north of SVT. I say an almost unnoticed piece of Shetland history as there did not appear to be any media at the site and nobody appears to have reported the work commencing on the local news (apart from TOTAL themselves on their website, but perhaps the breaking of the Toft ro-ro ramp & the subsequent chaos at Vidlin was more exciting news - it was for those in Vidlin apparently) - but the TOTAL project did start on a cold and damp 29th April 2010.
About the project - from the Laggan-Tormore website
The area of Atlantic Ocean to the West of Shetland on the edge of the continental shelf, is characterised by extreme environmental conditions such as strong winds, huge waves, very low temperatures and significant water depths. Combined with the lack of established natural gas infrastructure, this makes the establishment of gas production facilities in the area extremely challenging. Despite these challenges, TOTAL E&P UK Ltd has established a significant portfolio of exploration and development interests in the West of Shetland area.
Our main field in the area is Laggan, which became a formal project following the drilling of a well in 2004. It is a medium-sized gas field, which lies in 600 metres of water, 125km north-west of the Shetland Islands. Building on Laggan as a core area in the West of Shetland region, the Tormore well was drilled in 2007 to discover a small to medium sized gas field, also in 600 metres of water, 16km south-west of Laggan.
After extensive development engineering studies, the Laggan-Tormore Project received full sanction in March 2010. This could lead to the first production of gas from this challenging region by 2014.