Statoil extends Njord shutdown off Norway

Statoil will extend a suspension of production from Njord oil and gas field in the Norwegian Sea to allow time for reinforcement of the floating steel production facility.

The company halted production on July 27 and emptied the Njord A platform of oil and gas. At the time, it planned to resume output in mid-September.

The suspension was for inspections following reinforcement of the deck framing conducted in the summer of 2012. In that project, the company discovered small deformations in beams and other structural elements. It reinforced some of the deformations and considered others too small to require remediation.

This year the company inspected the entire platform to verify its strength in various weather and load conditions.

“The inspections have not disclosed new damage, but the reanalyses show that some of the deck’s structures are too heavily loaded and that reinforcements are necessary before production and drilling can resume,” a company statement said.

Njord Production Director Arve Rennemo said, “It already seems clear that we will have to allow for this work to take until the summer of 2014.”

Before production ceased in July, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate estimated Njord this year would produce 10,000 b/d of oil, 980 million standard cu m of natural gas, and 230,000 tonnes of NGL.

The field, on Blocks 6407/7 and 7407/10 about 130 km northwest of Kristiansund, started production in 1997. Water depth is about 330 m.

Statoil, operator, holds a 20% interest. Other interests are GDF Suez E&P Norge 40%, E.On E&P 30%, Faero Petroleum 7.5%, and VNG Norge 2.5%.

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