Employment on Hebron to nearly double in 2013

Project to hit high gear, with concrete work starting

Ashley Fitzpatrick afitzpatrick@thetelegram.com
Published on March 22, 2013
The drydock area at the Bull Arm Fabrication Site was well underway as of January 2013. The work area was filled with water before the Hebron project started. It will fill with water again, when the rock wall is removed and the very base of the Hebron installation is floated out to a nearby, deepwater construction site. — Submitted photo

Spring is on the calendar, if not necessarily yet in the air, and it has Hebron project lead Geoff Parker looking forward to getting more people working on the

$14-billion offshore oil project.

Construction on the base of the Hebron gravity based structure is still just getting started at Bull Arm.

“We’ve been able to keep the project on schedule despite the harsh winter that we’ve just had,” Parker said, speaking at a Rotary luncheon in St. John’s Thursday.

He said more than 1,600 people are now working on Hebron in Newfoundland and Labrador, but employment is expected to reach more than 3,000 by later this year.

Parker said peaks in employment will come as concrete work for the oil platform’s gravity base takes place at the same time work is underway on the other large pieces — modules — making up the project.

The project marked a milestone last week, with first steel being cut for the living quarters module, at Metal World in Torbay.

The living quarters module will be built at Bull Arm, in a different area of the fabrication site from the start of the concrete base.

The drilling support module will be built in Marystown.

 

There are two other modules: a derrick equipment set and utilities process module.  These two pieces will be built by Hyundai Heavy Industries in South Korea and brought by barge to the Bull Arm site. The Hebron platform also requires a flare boom and lifeboat stations.

“They’re all being built at various locations within the province — we haven’t awarded the contracts yet,” Parker said.

On the actual construction of all parts of the project: “the availability of skilled labour will be a challenge,” he said.

ExxonMobil Canada, with a 36 per cent interest, is lead on the Hebron development.

It is partnered with Chevron Canada Ltd. (about 27 per cent interest), Suncor Energy (23 per cent), Statoil Canada (10 per cent) and Nalcor Energy (five per cent).

 

afitzpatrick@thetelegram.com