Danish operators step up project activity

The Danish Energy Agency has approved Hess’ plan for further development of the South Arne field, according to partner Noreco.

Offshore staff

STAVANGER, Norway -- The Danish Energy Agency has approved Hess’ plan for further development of the South Arne field, according to partner Noreco.

Phase III of the Danish North Sea project will involve drilling two infill wells this year, conducting screening studies into the potential in the field’s northern segments, and the possibility of further infill drilling in the Tor and Ekofisk formations in the main producing area. Based on this new work, a revised development plan will be submitted in the second half of 2010.

Last year, Noreco participated in the Maersk-operated Middle Jurassic Gita discovery, which may extend into three Danish North Sea licenses. Noreco estimates the field’s potential resources at 250 MMboe with substantial upside, following a recent review by its subsurface team.

The company says further drilling is needed to define the accumulation’s vertical and lateral extent, both of which may be significant. This year a seismic processing program is planned involving four different surveys, aimed at pre-stack depth migration to improve depth imaging. Reducing the depth uncertainty should optimize subsequent placement of appraisal wells, one of which Noreco hopes to drill in 2011.

Elsewhere in the North Sea, Noreco is a partner to Maersk in the Flyndre development in Norwegian license PL018C. This Paleocene discovery extends into two UK licenses, P255 and P079, and all parties concerned are finalizing a joint-study agreement. The aim is to clarify Flyndre’s commercial potential and to agree on a preferred development concept – Maersk hopes to submit a plan to the UK government later this year.

Noreco is also a partner in Norwegian Sea license PL348, straddling the fault zone between the Halten Terrace and the Trondelag platform. There are various prospect extending northwards to Statoil’s Njord platform, including three discoveries: Tau (oil and gas), Galtvort (gas-condensate), and last year’s Gygrid (light oil), where the current reserves estimate is 19-31 MMboe.

Seismic processing is under way with the aim of improving reservoir mapping and paving the way for a development, focusing mainly on Gygrid. The licensees are looking at tieback opportunities.

North of the Troll field in the North Sea, Noreco holds 20% of the Wintershall-operated PL378, which includes the oil and gas discovery Grosbeak, where volumes are estimated at 35-190 MMboe. In the lead-up to development planning, an appraisal well will likely be drilled this year along with an exploration well on the nearby Gnatcatcher prospect.

02/18/2010

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