Photo: Snorre expansion project; Source: Equinor

Equinor gets green light for Snorre expansion start up

The Norwegian authorities have given oil major Equinor and its partners the consent to start work on the expansion of the Snorre field in the North Sea.

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) said that the expansion of the Snorre field in the North Sea consists of six subsea templates, which will be tied into Snorre A.

According to the organization, 24 new wells – 13 of which will be production wells and 11 will be water-alternating gas injectors – will be drilled.

The recoverable reserves at the field were calculated at around 31 million standard cubic metres of oil equivalent (195 million barrels) in the amended plan for development and operation (PDO). This corresponds to about twice the oil reserves in the Gina Krog field in the North Sea.

Arvid Østhus, the NPD’s assistant director development and operations for the North Sea, said: “The expansion of Snorre is a result of tireless work by both the companies and the authorities; work which has been ongoing for close to 15 years”.

It is worth noting that the country’s offshore safety body, the Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA), gave its consent to Equinor to use the facilities and associated modifications that are part of the expansion project.

The consent, given to the company earlier this month, includes the use of seabed facilities, production and injection pipes, flexible risers, and associated modifications to the Snorre A facility.

As for the field, Snorre was proven in 1979 and currently produces from the Snorre A, B, and UPA facilities.

In 2018, the licensees submitted an amended PDO for a redevelopment of the field, called the Snorre Expansion Project, and this was approved by the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy in the summer of 2018.

With the contribution from the expansion, Snorre will be able to have profitable production all the way through 2040.

Partners in the field are Equinor (33.27 per cent), Petoro (30 per cent), Vår Energi (18.55 per cent), Idemitsu Petroleum (9.6 per cent), and Wintershall Dea (8.57 per cent).