Sustainable and Circular Business Model for Oil & Gas Offshore Platform Decommissioning

  •  Vincenzo Basile    
  •  Roberto Vona    


In recent years, the problem of decommissioning and recycling offshore platforms has become an increasingly complex issue for environmental, socio-economic and safety reasons. The decommissioning or sustainable conversion of offshore platforms in the broader context of the circular economy will lead to the acquisition of new technologies and increasingly change values and behaviours towards sustainability in line with new business models. It will also be a complex process as it will require new skills, transformative technologies and the ability to engage all stakeholders. The objective of this study are the Multi-Use Platforms at Sea (MUPS), which represents an interesting solution for the creation of marine areas where different economic and recreational activities can be launched and developed according to the needs of environmental protection (e.g. renewable energies, shellfish farming, decarbonization plants, tourism and recreation).The main research question was the following: "What is the sustainable and circular business model in the literature that can be best used to support the transformation and/or decommissioning of oil platforms?" In addition, "How can the above business model be applied to the case of a platform considering social and environmental impacts?" In the first phase, the research activity focused on a thorough review of the literature on offshore platform decommissioning and sustainable and circular business models. This allowed us to access the Sustainable Circular Business Model Canvas (SCBMC), a conceptual tool that presents a holistic view of the different multi-purpose management options and their social and environmental impacts. This tool could help oil and gas operators (and related industries) address platform mining issues. The methodology adopted was a qualitative analysis. To test the SCBMC, an empirical study was conducted with semi-structured questionnaires given to several stakeholders (including experts, professionals and academics) in the international decommissioning industry. In addition, broader desk research on global offshore case studies was conducted using information sources and secondary sources.

In future research, it may be useful to compare the SCBMC with the latest mainstream Circular Business Model (CBM) issues to better assess and quantify the environmental and social impacts of offshore platform decommissioning and to broaden the debate on this topic, considering economic indicators.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.