Photo: Oseberg field centre in the North Sea. (Photo: Ole Jørgen Bratland - Equinor)

Equinor to pump up gas supply for tight European market

Norwegian oil and gas giant Equinor and its partners have received permission to increase gas exports from two offshore fields in Norway to supply the tight European market.

Production permits for the Oseberg and Troll fields have each been increased by 1 billion cubic meters (bcm) for the gas year starting 1 October, Equinor said on Monday.

Already in June, Equinor took steps to evaluate and develop concepts for enhancing the production and exports to the European market. This work resulted in enhanced production permits from the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy for the Oseberg and Troll fields.

Specifically, Equinor and its partners have received production permits for the gas year 2021 (starting 1 October). Under these permits, production for each of these fields is 1 bcm higher than for the current year, i.e. an increase from 5 bcm to 6 bcm for Oseberg and from 36 bcm to 37 bcm for Troll.

“The production permits allow us to produce more gas from these two important fields this fall and through the winter. We believe that this is very timely as Europe is facing an unusually tight market for natural gas. At Equinor we are working on measures to increase exports from our fields on the NCS”, said Helge Haugane, senior vice president Gas & Power.

The Troll A platform in the North Sea - Equinor
The Troll A platform in the North Sea. (Photo: Elisabeth Sahl & Jan Arne Wold – Woldcam – Equinor)

After 25 years of significant gas exports from Troll, around 50 per cent of the gas is left in the ground. To further develop the Troll area and reinforce its ability to secure gas deliveries to Europe in the coming decades, Equinor has recently completed the Troll Phase 3 project by bringing it on stream. Equinor said the Troll phase 3 is one of the most profitable projects in its entire history.

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Recoverable volumes from Troll phase 3, which will produce the Troll West gas cap with low CO2 emissions, are estimated at as much as 347 billion standard cubic metres of gas. The total recoverable gas volume remaining in Troll is estimated to be 715 billion standard cubic metres.

“Now we are ramping up production at Troll following the completion of the Phase 3 project, and we expect to reach plateau production from 1 October”, said Haugane.

Troll phase 3 will extend the life of Troll A and the Kollsnes processing plant beyond 2050, and the plateau production period by 5-7 years.