On Wednesday, a sold-out crowd at the Barents Sea Conference in Hammerfest heard Director General Torgeir Stordal encourage more exploration.
"There are still considerable resources in the Barents Sea, both in fields, discoveries and in exploration opportunities," Stordal said.
He pointed to the Snøhvit and Goliat fields as the foundation for current activity and production. And next year, the Johan Castberg field will come on stream. According to Stordal, this opens up new opportunities.
New discoveries have recently been made both in the area surrounding Goliat and the area surrounding Johan Castberg. Such discoveries can generate substantial values when they are tied back to existing infrastructure.
"Good work is also under way on a new development solution on Wisting, which is the largest discovery on the Norwegian shelf yet to be developed. We're excited to keep track of this in the future," Stordal said.
Once additional fields come on stream, the Barents Sea will become a more important contributor, and this will further bolster Norway as an energy supplier to a Europe in need.
Only six per cent of resources have been produced in the Barents Sea, while the discovered resources here are estimated at just over 30 per cent of the total i the areas which have been opened for petroleum activities.
In other words, there is still a considerable potential in undiscovered resources (more than 60 per cent of the total in the areas in the Barents Sea which have been opened for petroleum activities).
"Our calculations showed that exploration activity is profitable in all ocean areas, including the Barents Sea," Stordal reminded the audience.
He also addressed the newly published Gassco report on export solutions for gas from the Barents Sea:
"A new profitable gas export solution could provide more incentive for exploration," Stordal said.
There are vast proven gas resources on the Norwegian shelf which are currently without development plans. Much of this gas is located in tight reservoirs – which makes it difficult to produce.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has conducted a mapping of gas resources that, for various reasons, have yet to be developed. Several of these discoveries could be produced in a manner that is profitable from a socio-economic perspective.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has granted Harbour Energy Norge AS drilling permit for well 15/9-25 in production licence 1138, cf. Section 13 of the Resource Management Regulations.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) is changing its name to the Norwegian Offshore Directorate as of 1 January 2024. The new name reflects the additional responsibilities assigned to the directorate in recent years.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has granted Equinor Energy ASA drilling permit for well 35/11-28 S in production licence 248 C, cf. Section 13 of the Resource Management Regulations.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has granted Neptune Energy Norge AS drilling permit for well 35/6-4 A in production licence 929, cf. Section 13 of the Resource Management Regulations.