Norway’s Equinor discovers new North Sea oil reserves
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Oil company Equinor, along with Var Energi and Aker BP, have discovered new reserves of oil in the North Sea, with recoverable resources estimated at between 8-23 million barrels of oil equivalent, the company said.

    The estimate was based on the drilling of two experimental wells 34/6-5 S and 34/6-5 ST2 at a depth of 3952 metres and 3,750 metres 10 km from the Visund field where Equinor has operated since 1990.

   Both wells are located within the area of production licence 554 – where Equinor has had operating rights since 2010. It was Equinor’s fifth such discovery on the Norwegian continental shelf this year.

   “The discovery is in line with our road map of exploring near existing infrastructure in order to increase the commerciality,” says Rune Nedregaard, senior vice president, Exploration and Production South.

     It was Equinor’s fifth such discovery on the Norwegian continental shelf this year.

–          In February, Equinor, along with DNO Norge, Petoro and Wellesley Petroleum, discovered oil and gas, with recoverable resources estimated at 44 to 69 million barrels of oil equivalent, in production licence 923 near the Troll field, where Equinor and Statoil have operated since 1996.         

–          In March, Equinor, together with Var Energi and Petoro, discovered oil with recoverable resources estimated at 31 to 50 million barrels of oil equivalent in production licence 532 in the Barents Sea, 10 km from the Johan Castberg field, where operations are to begin in 2023.        

–          Also in March, Equinor, along with Var Energi, Idemitsu Petroleum and Neptune Energy, drilled two exploration wells 11 km from the Fram field (where operations have been under way since 2003), discovering reserves with recoverable resources estimated at 75-120 million barrels oil equivalent.

–          Lastly, in April, Equinor, in partnership with Total E&P Norge AS and Var Energi, drilled exploration wells in an area adjacent to the Tyrihans field in the Norwegian Sea (where operations have been proceeding since 2009) and discovered oil and gas reserves with estimated recoverable resources of 19-26 million barrels of oil equivalent.

    The discoveries could give a new impetus to a rise in production in Norway —  where the launch of operations in the Johan Sverdrup oil field provided a stimulus in October 2019. In 2019, Norway produced 1.75 million barrels of oil and liquid hydrocarbons per day and that figure rose to 2.01 million barrels in 2020, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) of the U.S. Department of Energy.

   Production in 2021 in Norway will rise to 2.13 million barrels per day, according to EIA forecasts, and in 2022 to 2.25 million bpd.

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