The Shelf in 2007

14.01.2008
Press release 5/2008: Gas production has increased in 2007.  As expected, oil production is somewhat lower than in the previous year.  32 exploration wells were spudded in 2007, up from 26 in 2006. Twelve new discoveries were made, most of which appear to be fairly small.  The shelf is characterized by vigorous activity and continued growth in total investment costs. The Shelf in 2007 contains facts from the past year as well as forecasts for the upcoming five-year period.

Petroleum production
A total of 237.8 million standard cubic metres (Sm³) marketable oil equivalents (o.e.) were produced in 2007.  This is 26.2 million Sm³ o.e. less than in the record year 2004.

Investments
The activity level on the Norwegian shelf is high.  Higher oil prices have led to significant increases in both activity and cost levels.  Continued growth in total investment costs is expected.

New fields
Four new fields have commenced production during the course of the year: Blane, Enoch, Ormen Lange and Snøhvit.  An additional three fields are expected to start producing in 2008: Alvheim, Vilje and Volve.

Developments
During the course of 2007, 8 plans for development and operation (PDO) were approved for 9 new deposits.  Around 10 PDOs are expected to be submitted to the authorities in 2008.

New players
A total of 13 new companies were pre-qualified as licensees or operators on the Norwegian shelf in 2007.  14 companies are currently being considered.

Exploration
32 exploration wells were spudded in 2007, of which 20 were wildcat wells and 12 were appraisal wells.  33 exploration wells have been completed. In 2006 the NPD expected around 30 exploration wells to be spudded. The NPD believes that the high exploration activity will continue in 2008.

The resource accounts (preliminary figures as of 31 December 2007) 
There is no significant change in the overall estimate for petroleum resources on the Norwegian shelf as of 31 December 2007.  The estimate is 13 billion Sm3 o.e.  The accounts show relatively good growth from exploration activity and an increase in gross reserves.

Seismic
In 2007, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate collected 2617 kilometres of seismic data in the Nordland VII and Troms II areas.  Data acquisition will continue in the summer of 2008.

Environment
Emissions and discharges from the petroleum activities largely follow production volumes.  Increased emissions and discharges occur as a consequence of longer distances to the market, tail production and extended field lifetime.

Contact in the NPD:
Eldbjørg Vaage Melberg, tel. +47 51 87 61 00.