PSA sanctions Barents Sea drilling but asks for safety changes

Lundin Norway has approval from Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority to drill an exploration well in the Barents Sea.

Offshore staff

OSLO, Norway – Lundin Norway has approval from Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) to drill an exploration well in the Barents Sea.

The semisubmersibleLeiv Eiriksson will spud the well next month on block 7220/6, 190 km (118 mi) from Bjørnøya. Drilling could last 34 days, depending on whether a discovery follows.

PSA has audited Statoil’s planning process and preparations for exploration drilling of well 7435/12-1 in the newly opened southeastern section of the Norwegian Barents, where no wells have been drilled previously.

The distances from shore bases and the Arctic location may complicate planning and execution of exploration drilling in this region, PSA points out.

While the audit identified no non-conformities, PSA did find room for improvement in risk reduction, decoupling from BOPs if an incident arises, routines for testing the ice deflection system, and monitoring and management of ice fragments.

Statoil must report on how it plans to address these improvement points by Aug. 21. 

06/29/2017

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