Expansion work halted on Barents Sea’s Snøhvit license


Consortium partners involved with the Snøhvit license last month announced plans to halt expansion work in the area, located in the Barents Sea, as the current gas discoveries indicate expansion is not commercially viable.

Partners include the operator Statoil, which has a 36.79% interest; plus Petoro with 30%; Total E&P Norge with 18.40%; GDF SUEZ E&P Norge with 12%; and RWE Dea Norge with 2.81% interest.

The project partners have not yet decided whether to go ahead with LNG or a pipeline solution for the planned expansion in the future.

Studies have been carried out for the expansion of the gas exportation capacity from Melkøya during the last 18 months.

One-third of UK offshore helicopter fleet grounded

One-third of the UK’s offshore helicopter fleet was grounded in October after a helicopter dipped into the North Sea.

According to Oil and Gas UK, 29 aircraft of the 86-strong offshore fleet were grounded by operators Bond Aviation, CHC Helicopter and Bristow.

All 19 people aboard the helicopter travelling to a rig operated on behalf of Total SA (TOT) were successfully rescued.

Lundin Petroleum confirms Barents Sea gas discovery

Lundin Petroleum

Lundin Petroleum last month made a significant gas discovery in the Salina structure located on the west flank of the Loppa High in the Barents Sea.

Exploration well 7220/10-1, located in the PL533 licence, proved two gas columns in sandstone of Cretaceous and Jurassic age. The well was drilled to a total depth of 2,371m below mean sea level with the rig Scarabeo 8.

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate calculated a range of gross discovered volume in the Salina structure of between five and seven billion standard cubic metres (Bsm3), which is 29 to 41 million barrels of oil equivalent (MMboe) of recoverable gas / condensate.

Iranian oil platforms face cyber attack

Cyber attacks against communication networks on Iranian offshore oil and gas platforms were warded off in October, according to a state official.

Iranian Offshore Oil Company’s head of information technology, Mohammad Reza Golshani, was quoted by Iran’s Mehr News Agency as saying that a cyber attack had targeted the offshore platforms’ information networks.

"This attack was planned by the regime occupying Jerusalem (Israel) and a few other countries," Golshani claimed.

Technip JV wins Chinese subsea contract

The Deep Orient

China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) Deepwater Development last month awarded a €200m contract to Technip in a consortium with Offshore Oil Engineering.

The award is for an engineering, procurement, installation and construction services contract for the South China Sea deepwater gas development project in the Panyu field, which is located about 150km south of Hong Kong.

Technip’s share in the contract is around €110m.

The South China Sea deepwater gas development project in the Panyu field consists of a new subsea production system with six wells and its associated control system, tied to a new central processing platform.

Chevron makes gas discovery in Satyr-4 exploration well


Chevron Australia, a subsidiary of Chevron Corporation, discovered around 67m of net gas pay in the Satyr-4 exploration discovery well.

The well, located in the WA-374-P1 permit area about 120km north-west of Barrow Island, is in the Greater Gorgon Area of the Carnarvon Basin, offshore of Australia.

The well has been drilled to a total depth of 4,579m in 1,088m of water, the company said.

UK announces 27th offshore licensing round winners

John Hayes

The UK Government last month announced the winners of 167 new production licences in its 27th offshore oil and gas licensing round.

The notable winners include companies including Apache Corporation, BG Group, Maersk, Nexen, Premier Oil, Royal Dutch Shell and Total.

The licences, offered by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), cover 330 North Sea blocks, with a further 61 blocks under environmental assessment.

BP confirms start of North Sea Devenick gas project

East Brae

In October, BP confirmed the successful start-up of the Devenick gas project located in the central North Sea.

The project platform is a subsea tie-back to the Marathon Oil’s East Brae platform, which it is 34km north of, and provides a new source for the UK’s domestic gas demand.

BP North Sea business regional president, Trevor Garlick, said the Devenick project has been delivered safely and on schedule.

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