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Plexus Holdings ready to help tackle gas industry’s methane problem

The company's 'gas proof' POS-GRIP well-head technology has been identified as a potential for the methane leak problem which has come under greater industry scrutiny
oil and gas operations
Plexus is confident ongoing talks will lead to new commercial opportunities

Plexus Holdings Plc (LON:POS) told investors that it is seeing an increasing level of interest in its POS-GRIP HG metal-to-metal seal technology amid growing global concerns over the leaking of methane from gas wells.

The company, in a stock market statement, highlighted that the POS-GRIP systems are proven to be a ‘gas-proof’ solution for natural gas wellheads and have been deployed in hundreds of wells – including the highest pressure well ever drilled in the North Sea.

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Recent discussions with potential customers and partners have indicated an increased focus on POS-GRIP due to its superior capabilities in terms of long-term performance, reliability and safety for gas and methane containment.

Ben Van Bilderbeek, Plexus chief executive, said: "I am confident that this important industry development heightened by the world increasingly switching to gas consumption, together with an uptick in sentiment and capital investment across the energy industry, means that Plexus is well placed to deliver on its objective to position POS-GRIP as an enabling technology for the energy sector, one that not only raises industry standards but also generates significant value for our shareholders."

Tackling the methane problem

“The furore over the damaging nature of gas leak toxic emissions, and in particular methane, in relation to climate change reached a turning point at this year's World Gas Conference in Washington in June, where tackling methane was viewed as being ‘part of business as usual’.

“A series of major IOC CEOs stated at the conference that reducing gas leaks is now a major priority, which is perhaps not surprising when one considers that methane has a global warming potential of up to 86 times greater than carbon dioxide over a twenty year period.”

Plexus further highlighted that gas leaks occur not only from operating wells but also from abandoned wells, and America alone is estimated to have three million of them.

“Such is the scale of the problem that there is growing concern that methane leaks from gas infrastructure even have the potential to reverse the perceived environmental benefits of natural gas when compared to dirtier fossil fuels, such as coal,” it added.

The company added: “a number of major operators have publicly set targets to limit methane emissions from their operations, including Royal Dutch Shell which has pledged to limit methane emissions to less than 0.2% of the total volume of natural gas it extracts.  In April 2018, BP set a similar target.”

Gas-proof technologies are available

“To hit their self-imposed targets, operators are taking a dual-focused approach: deploy advanced equipment and technology to detect and repair leaks; importantly use gas-proof technologies that help prevent leaks from occurring in the first place.”

The POS-GRIP is one such gas-proof technology, according to Plexus.

“Designed by Plexus to raise wellhead standards to the level of premium tubular couplings, the Plexus POS-GRIP HG seals overcome the shortcomings associated with conventional wellhead sealing technologies, which often lead to expensive life-cycle maintenance fixes, such as injecting wellhead seals with resilient materials, which are unable to deliver permanent solutions.”

Plexus noted that POS-GRIP wellheads have been supplied for use on more than 350 wells, and it has longstanding arrangements with gas field operators around the world.

In February, Plexus sold its niche jack-up exploration rental business to TechnipFMC. Its subsequent focus has been on the further development of POS-GRIP and the roll-out of POS-GRIP products.

In Tuesday’s statement, the company said it is confident that discussions with potential customers and partners will lead to additional commercial opportunities relating to POS-GRIP.


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