Iceland opening to exploration
Iceland's government plans to open the Dreki area in the Atlantic for licensing in January 2009.
REYKJAVIK, Iceland --Iceland's government plans to open the Dreki area in the Atlantic for licensing in January 2009.
The region under review is on the Jan Mayen Ridge between Iceland and the island of Jan Mayen.
Seismic and geophysical studies suggest potential for producing oil and gas, as hydrocarbons have been found in adjacent and geologically similar areas. The government is encouraged by recent progress in deepwater/harsh environment drilling elsewhere in northwest Europe.
Further studies are under way into the marine biosphere, climate and sea conditions in the Dreki area. The results will be used to determine the impact of exploration activities, ahead of any sanctioned drilling programs.
Iceland derives much of its energy needs from hydro-power and geothermal energy. The government believes that any large-scale oil or gas discoveries could boost the country's economy, and possibly spur settlement in the northeast of the island.