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Wintershall Dea has chartered the Saipem semi-submersible Scarabeo 8 to complete the drilling programme covering six wells in its Nova subsea development, in block 35/9 (PL418), offshore Norway. The new award comes after Wintershall Dea in early-May decided to terminate the contract of the Northern Ocean semi-submersible West Mira, which had been working on the Nova campaign. The German operator, in a statement on 14 June, said Italian contractor Saipem had been awarded a contract for the Scarabeo 8 that is expected to start in the fourth quarter of this year. It added the contract also included options to drill additional wells for Wintershall Dea. Wintershall Dea said when it confirmed in early-May that it would be seeking a replacement rig to finish the Nova work that it still expected first production from the development in the second half of next year.
Equinor, along with partners Vår Energi and Aker BP, has found oil in Garantiana West exploration wells 34/6-5S and 34/6-5ST2, in PL554, drilled some 10 km northeast of the Visund field. Recoverable reserves in the discovery are estimated at 1.3-3.6 MMcm of oil equivalent, corresponding to 8-23 million Boe. Rune Nedregaard, Equinor senior vice-president, exploration and production south, says this is the first Equinor-operated well in PL554 and the fifth discovery on the Norwegian Shelf this year. “The discovery is in line with our roadmap of exploring near existing infrastructure in order to increase the commerciality.” A formation test was carried out in 34/6-5S, indicating good flow qualities with stable flowing pressure and low pressure drop, in addition to consistent pressure build-up. Partners will now consider a tying in the discovery to the Garantiana field development.
BP has joined forces with Statkraft and Aker Offshore Wind in a consortium bidding to develop offshore wind energy in Norway. The partnership – in which all three will hold a 33.3% share – will pursue a bid to develop offshore wind power in the Sørlige Nordsjø II (SN2) licence area. BP says SN2’s favourable location provides power export access to local and adjacent markets. The consortium also intends to explore opportunities to supply power to electrify oil and gas facilities. Dev Sanyal, BP executive vice-president of gas and low carbon energy, says: “BP aims to grow its renewables business at scale and we see great opportunities in offshore wind energy. Coming together with Aker and Statkraft, we believe this consortium will be ideally positioned to grow effectively and efficiently and deliver clean power for European markets.”