Upstream oil and gas firm Serica Energy has secured field development plan (FDP) approval from the UK Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) for the Columbus development on the UKCS in the central North Sea.
Serica submitted the development plan for approval in June this year.
The field is expected to have peak production of 7,800 gross barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day and best estimate gross (2C) contingent resources of 13.4Mboe.
The Columbus development is located in blocks 23/16f and 23/21a Columbus Sub Area.
According to the company, the Development Area would be drained by a single well, which will be connected to the recently approved Arran-Shearwater pipeline.
Production from the Columbus field will be exported through the pipeline. The timing of the field development is linked to the Arran-Shearwater pipeline being tied into the Shearwater platform in the third quarter of 2020.
Serica expects to commence production from Columbus in 2021.
Serica Energy chief executive Mitch Flegg said: “The project team have worked closely with the OGA and the host infrastructure owners since the field development plan was submitted in June 2018 to achieve this successful outcome.
“The development is important in its own right and will also enhance our understanding of nearby exploration acreage, which was secured by Serica in the UK 30th Licence Round.”
Earlier this month, the company obtained approval for an environmental statement from the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. The submission of the document was a precondition for the OGA approval of the FDP.
Serica operates the Columbus development with a 50% interest. The remaining stake is owned by EOG Resources UK (25%) and Endeavour Energy UK (25%).