Poll finds Norwegians want oil exploration assessment

Eric Watkins
OGJ Oil Diplomacy Editor

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 18 -- About 73% of Norwegians favor an investigation into the consequences of oil and gas exploration off the northern Lofoten islands, according to an opinion poll conducted on behalf of the country’s oil industry association.

"The poll showed that people think reasonably and wish to get more knowledge before a decision to allow or not to allow exploration in these areas is made," said Gro Braekken, managing director of Norway’s Oljeindustriens Landsforening (OLF).

In November 2009, Statoil estimated that the areas Nordland VI and VII off Lofoten contain 2-3 billion boe, representing a value of as much as $259.6 billion. Statoil said it was ready to start drilling in the area in 2011, but that it needed to wait for a “consequence study” and approval from authorities.

The Statoil oil remarks followed earlier ones by the head of Norway’s petroleum directorate, the Oljedirektoratet (OD), which is responsible for regulation of petroleum resources on the country’s continental shelf.

At the time, OD Chief Bente Nyland told industry journal Teknisk Ukeblad that seismic scans carried out in the previous 2 years confirmed favorable geological foundations with rocks from the Jura-era found at a proper depth for potential oil and gas deposits.

"This is the type of geology where most discoveries on the Norwegian shelf have been made," said Nyland. "Because of that, we have much belief that there are good possibilities offshore Lofoten and Versteralen."

Despite the upbeat remarks and the recent poll, exploration activities are still banned in Norway's northernmost territories, with continuing opposition from environmentalists and politicians who support the nation’s fishing industry.

Lars Haltbrekke, who heads the Norwegian Society for the Conservation of Nature, suggested that the country’s oil industry is being disingenuous when it comes to launching the initiative for gathering more knowledge.

"OLF's former head Per Terje Vold said last year that an investigation of consequences is synonymous with an opening process. The majority of such investigations, conducted previously, have led to an opening," said Haltbrekke.

Earlier this month, the leader of the Center Party of Norway, Liv Signe Navarsete, expressed opposition to the launch of a consequence study of petroleum activities off Lofoten and Versteralen during the current parliamentary period.

Navarsete, whose party is against exploration in Norway’s northern regions, said that protection of fish in the region has priority over the development of its oil.

In 2009, the Norwegian government said it would not open for petroleum activity in Lofoten or Versteralen during the current governing period, which ends in 2013. However, the government also said it would determine in 2010 whether a consequence study should be undertaken for the region.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

Related Articles

Husky assesses options for West White Rose extension project

07/28/2015 The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board said it has provided “conditional approval” of a development plan by Husky Energy Inc...

UK awards 41 more licenses in offshore round

07/28/2015

The UK government has awarded 41 licenses for exploration and production in the second tranche of the 28th Offshore Licensing Round.

First bidding round showed Mexico reform challenges, House panel told

07/27/2015 An apparently disappointing first round of bids for oil and gas exploration rights revealed problems that require attention if Mexico’s dramatic en...

OIG report: EPA needs to improve oversight of fracing with diesel

07/27/2015 The US Environmental Protection Agency needs to improve its oversight of hydraulic fracturing using diesel fuels and address any compliance issues,...

OGJ Newsletter

07/27/2015

International news for oil and gas professionals

ONGC Videsh unit drills horizontally in Russia’s Snezhnoye field

07/24/2015 Imperial Energy Corp. PLC, a subsidiary of ONGC Videsh Ltd., has drilled two horizontal wells in the Naunak formation of Snezhnoye field in the Tom...

EQT reports high IP from Utica dry gas well

07/24/2015 EQT Corp., Pittsburgh, said a deep, dry gas Utica well averaged 72.9 MMcfd with an average flowing casing pressure of 8,641 psi during a 24-hr deli...

Separate Murkowski bill addresses crude exports, OCS revenue sharing

07/24/2015 US Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair Lisa Murkowski (R-Alas.) introduced legislation that would end the ban on US crude oil expor...

Statoil’s Julius well discovers gas, condensate in King Lear area

07/23/2015 Statoil ASA said its Julius exploratory well, drilled in the King Lear area of the Norwegian North Sea, has discovered gas and condensate (OGJ Onli...
White Papers

2015 Global Engineering Information Management Solutions Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award

The Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global...
Sponsored by

Three Tips to Improve Safety in the Oil Field

Working oil fields will always be tough work with inherent risks. There’s no getting around that. Ther...
Sponsored by

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by

Asset Decommissioning in Oil & Gas: Transforming Business

Asset intensive organizations like Oil and Gas have their own industry specific challenges when it com...
Sponsored by

Squeezing the Green: How to Cut Petroleum Downstream Costs and Optimize Processing Efficiencies with Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Solutions

As the downstream petroleum industry grapples with change in every sector and at every level, includin...
Sponsored by

7 Steps to Improve Oil & Gas Asset Decommissioning

Global competition and volatile markets are creating a challenging business climate for project based ...
Sponsored by
Available Webcasts

On Demand

OGJ's Midyear Forecast 2015

Fri, Jul 10, 2015

This webcast is to be presented by OGJ Editor Bob Tippee and Senior Economic Editor Conglin Xu.  They will summarize the Midyear Forecast projections in key categories, note important changes from January’s forecasts, and examine reasons for the adjustments.

register:WEBCAST


Predictive Analytics in your digital oilfield - Optimize Production Yield and Reduce Operational Costs

Tue, Jul 7, 2015

Putting predictive analytics to work in your oilfield can help you anticipate failures, plan and schedule work in advance, eliminate emergency work and catastrophic failures, and at the same time you can optimize working capital and improve resource utilization.  When you apply analytic capabilities to critical production assets it is possible to reduce non-productive time and increase your yield.

Learn how IBM's analytics capabilities can be applied to critical production assets with the goal of reducing non-productive time, increasing yield and reducing operations costs.

register:WEBCAST


Cognitive Solutions for Upstream Oil and Gas

Fri, Jun 12, 2015

The oil & gas sector is under pressure on all sides. Reserves are limited and it’s becoming increasingly expensive to find and extract new resources. Margins are already being squeezed in an industry where one wrong decision can cost millions. Analyzing data used in energy exploration can save millions of dollars as we develop ways to predict where and how to extract the world’s massive energy reserves.

This session with IBM Subject Matter Experts will discuss how IBM Cognitive Solutions contribute to the oil and gas industry using predictive analytics and cognitive computing, as well as real time streaming for exploration and drilling.

register:WEBCAST


The Alternative Fuel Movement: Four Need-to-Know Excise Tax Complexities

Thu, Jun 4, 2015

Discussion on how to approach, and ultimately embrace, the alternative fuel market by pulling back the veil on excise tax complexities. Taxes may be an aggravating part of daily operations, but their accuracy is crucial in your path towards business success.

register:WEBCAST


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected