A new look at stranded discoveriesEllida (@Aker BP)

A new look at stranded discoveries

23 relinquished discoveries changed operator in the last licensing round on the NCS. For some of these discoveries it might be the first step on the way to development.

Petro.no published an overview from the NPD of the 23 discoveries and fields that are included in new licenses from the APA 2018 awards. Some of these discoveries, which were deemed unlikely to be developed until now, might get a second chance by a new operator. In other cases, the prospectivity lies elsewhere in the newly awarded license.

PLDiscovery/fieldDisc/fieldYearHCNew Operator
9682/5-4 (Siv)disc1972oilFaroe Petroleum
9701/3-11 (Ipswich)disc2008oilOMV
97217/12-1 (Vette)disc1972oilRepsol
97217/12-2 (Brisling)disc1973oilRepsol
97218/10-1 (Mackerel)disc1980oilRepsol
97415/12-18 S (Storskrymten)disc2007oilOKEA
97415/12-18 Adisc2007oilOKEA
978Glitne (shutdown)field1995oilAker BP
98326/10-1 (Zulu Øst)disc2015gasEquinor
98525/8-16 S (Eitri)disc2009oilVår Energi
98525/8-9disc1997oilVår Energi
98525/6-1disc1986oilVår Energi
98526/6-5 S (Skrine Øst)disc2015gas/condensateVår Energi
98936/7-2disc1997oilDEA Norge
992Murchison (shutdown)field1975oilNeptune
99333/2-2 S (Morkel)disc2015oilSuncor
10056405/7-1 (Ellida)disc2003oilAker BP
10066406/1-2 (Sklinna)disc2003gas/condensateEquinor
10267222/6-1 S (Obesum)disc2008oil/gasAker BP

Discoveries awarded in APA2018 (Table from Petro.no)

Vette, Brisling and Mackerel are part of PL 972 in the northern part of the Egersund Basin, which was awarded to Repsol (40% operator), M Vest (30%) and Dyas (30%). Repsol is also operator of the new development of the Yme field in the Egersund Basin with expected production start in 2020 (read also “Repsol is growing in Norway”). Development of Vette (formerly known as the Bream discovery) has been looked at by Premier Oil before. Det Norske bought the Norwegian Premier Oil portfolio and did not pursue development due to lack of commerciality with low oil price and lower potential in the reservoir. The reservoir in Vette, Brisling and Mackerel are the Middle Jurassic Sandnes and Bryne formation sandstones. Upstream recently reported that Repsol is considering reusing the Gyda Platform for a possible development.

The Storskrymten discovery, now in PL 974, went to Okea and partners. Okea is planning to develop the Grevling field. Storskrymten lies only 5km away from Grevling and Okea hopes to produce the 2 to 22 mmboe in Storskrymten with just one well from Grevling says Petro.no. Storskrymten was discovered with well 15/12-18 S, which encountered a 16.8m oil column in the Paleocene Ty formation with good reservoir properties. Grevling is a quite complex field with several compartments and pressure barriers. Oil was found in Hugin, Sleipner and upper Skagerrak formations. The Grevling field is marginal due to its small size and complexity. Storskrymten could help to make the development commercially viable.

Aker BP picked up the Ellida discovery (6405/7-1) in PL 1005 north of Ormen Lange from 2003. The well encountered a 52m high oil column in the Late Cretacous Nise Formation. The reservoir consists of layered/laminated and bioturbated claystones, siltstones and sandstones with poor reservoir quality. The production rate from a DST was 40 m3 oil/day, with a GOR of 175 m3/m3. Ellida was never developed due to tight reservoirs and in addition it is located in very deep waters (1200m). Aker BP wants to give the discovery a second chance and looks at it as a high risk/high reward opportunity with a technological upside.

Geological sketch of the Ellida discovery (Figure Aker BP)

The Obesum discovery in the Barents Sea (7222/6-1S) also went to Aker BP. Obesum was a minor oil and gas discovery in Triassic Snadd and Kobbe reservoirs. Aker BP is probably looking for other Triassic targets in the new PL 1026, since the company is strategically positioning itself for de-risking and high-grading of the Triassic play (Read more about Aker BP’s position in the Barents Sea in “Barents Sea players and the APA awards”).

Looking for other targets

PL 968 containing the tight chalk discovery Siv was awarded to Faroe Petroleum and partners. Their main target is the Portishead prospect, which is defined as a stratigraphic trap in the Ty/Heimdal and Borr sandstones, similar to those encountered in the Faroe operated SE Tor licence.

Equinor becomes operator of PL 983 in the Åsta Graben, with the Zulu gas discovery (26/10-1), situated northeast of Johan Sverdrup. According to partner Faroe Petroleum several prospects have been identified in this license, with the main prospect being Såta, a four-way closure with reservoirs in the Sandnes and Statfjord formations.