Forties pipeline system

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Forties pipeline system
CountryUnited Kingdom
General directioneast–west
FromForties Charlie platform
Passes throughNorth Sea
ToCruden Bay
General information
Typecrude oil
Technical information
Length169 km (105 mi)
Maximum discharge0.7 million barrels per day (~3.5×10^7 t/a)
Diameter36 in (914 mm)

The Forties pipeline system (FPS) is a major pipeline network in the North Sea carrying 30% of the UK's oil, or about 550 thousand barrels per day (87×10^3 m3/d) of oil a day, to shore.[1] It was formerly owned and operated by global energy company BP, who retained the asset after selling the Forties oilfield to Apache Corp. in 2003. BP reached an agreement in April 2017 to sell the network to Ineos.[2] Over 70 assets tie BP's export lines into the FPS either directly or through intermediate hubs, eventually joining at either Forties Charlie or Forties Unity.

FPS consists of a 36-inch (910 mm) pipeline originating at Apache Corp.'s Forties Charlie platform. The pipeline carries crude oil 169 kilometres (105 mi), routing through the Forties Unity riser platform, to the terminal at Cruden Bay. From there unstabilised crude is co-mingled with natural gas condensate from the St Fergus terminal and pumped to the processing facility at Kinneil, Grangemouth. The onshore pipeline has three intermediate pumping stations at Netherley, Brechin and Balbeggie.[3]

FPS was out of service from 11 December 2017 due to a crack found the prior week, and returned to full capacity on 30 December 2017.[4]


  1. ^ "Grangemouth strike would force BP to shut North Sea pipeline", Daily Telegraph 2008-04-25
  2. ^ "BP sells Forties North Sea pipeline to Ineos". BBC News. 3 April 2017. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  3. ^ "Cruden Bay booster station".
  4. ^ INEOS FPS, INEOS Forties Pipeline System Media Update, 9:00am, 30/12/2017. Retrieved 5 Jan. 2018

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