New development expected to arrest European offshore decline

Matt Cook Douglas-Westwood London After playing a pivotal role in the European economy for decades, offshore hydrocarbon production has declined steeply in recent years and is struggling to arrest the dive. Since 2000, offshore oil and gas output has fallen 41% to 5.6 MMboe/d in 2013 from 9.7 MMboe/d (Fig. 1). The decline is largely the result of outdated regulation, aging infrastructure, and depleted fields. Well completions during 2000-13 have dropped at about half the rate of production, suggesting more greenfield projects are desperately needed as average well flow rates plummet. For this to happen, however, exploration activity must increase. This is particularly the case in the U...

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