Stormy weather forced Royal Dutch/Shell Group to halt output at a North Sea field, bringing Norway's idled production to 12% for a fourth day.
Shell stopped pumping the equivalent of 140,000 b/d at the Draugen field off central Norway on Jan. 7 because of bad weather and strong winds are preventing repairs to a loading hose. On Jan. 30, OPEC may pledge to reduce output further after agreeing to pump less starting this month as winter consumption peaks in the Northern Hemisphere.
Output of 345,000 b/d from Norway is halted, adding Shell's halted production from Draugen to the 205,000 b/d from Statoil ASA's Snorre A and Vigdis fields that were shut Nov. 28, 2004. Statoil, Norway's largest oil company said bad weather has delayed work to restore output from the fields.
There's no estimate for when pumping might resume at Draugen, and forecasts are for gales to prevail in coming days, Shell spokeswoman Bianca Ruakere said.
"People are concerned about the damage,'' Blemkin said. "They are also worried that the outlook is for a continuation of the storms this week.''