Statoil plans to triple North America production by 2020

Statoil plans to boost its US and Canada production to 500,000 boe/d by 2020 compared with its current 149,000 boe /d, and the company continues shifting its focus from natural gas toward more liquids-rich plays, executives told investors in New York on June 20.

Most increased production will come from US operations in the Marcellus, Eagle Ford, and Bakken shale plays, said Bill Maloney, executive vice-president and head of Statoil's Development and Production, North America.

Successful start-up of the Statoil-operated Leismer project in Canada and continued ramp-up of production in US shales and tight oil plays are key components behind Statoil's recent production growth, he said.

Separately, Statoil announced plans to partner with Canada’s PetroFrontier Corp. on four exploration permits and two exploration permit applications in the southern Georgina basin in Northern Territory, Australia (OGJ Online, June 20, 2012).

Statoil said its Australia shale activities will rely on unconventional expertise it has developed in the US where it has leases in various shale plays.

Noting an emphasis on liquids, Statoil currently operates about 20 rigs in the Marcellus gas play compared with 36 rigs at yearend 2011.

“We’ve brought the rig count down,” in the Marcellus and diverted some of Statoil’s drilling capital to the Bakken oil formation in North Dakota and Montana, he said. Statoil obtained Bakken acreage last year with its acquisition of Brigham Exploration Co.

This year, Statoil is assembling an operational organization in Houston for its South Texas Eagle Ford operations, he said.

"Safe and responsible development of new US onshore resources is strongly underpinning the growth strategy,” Maloney said. “We now have production from more than 1,000 wells and hold more than 1 million net acres in three of the best US plays."

Offshore, Maloney said Statoil expects to produce 100,000 boe/d from the deepwater Gulf of Mexico by 2020, double the company’s current output.

Statoil operates about 30 rigs in the gulf. Plans to double deepwater production will involve the addition of four rigs this year and another 12 next year, the company said.

In its long-term economic and energy outlook released June 21, Statoil expects global energy demand o increase by more than 40% by 2040 with fossil fuels accounting for most of the increase.

“Our assessment suggests that global growth will continue at an average of 2.8% per year over the coming 3 decades. This is close to the average of the previous 30 years, even though we expect a gradual slowdown in growth towards 2040," says Statoil Chief Economist Klaus Mohn.

Global oil demand is expected to reach a plateau by 2030 with natural gas seen as the fuel of the future, he said.

In aggregate, the fossil fuel share of the global energy mix is expected to drop from 81% in 2010 to 73% in 2040.

Contact Paula Dittrick at


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