NPD OKs Total’s Barents Sea Drilling Plans. Leiv Eiriksson Still Awaiting AoC
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate has granted Total E&P Norge AS a drilling permit for well 7225/3-2, located in the Norwegian Sector of the Barents Sea.
Total will use the Leiv Eiriksson semi-submersible drilling rig, built in 2001, for operation at the well which is a part of production licence 535. This will be the second exploration well drilled in the licence.
The spud date is still unknown because Total, which is the operator of the licence with 40 per cent stake, needs to secure all other permits and consents required by other authorities prior to starting drilling activities.
To remind, the Leiv Eiriksson rig, which was last year used by FOGL for exploration offshore Falkland Islands, is yet to receive an Acknowledgement of Compliance.
The Acknowledgement of Compliance is a decision by the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway that expresses the authorities’ confidence that petroleum activities can be carried out using the facility within the framework of the regulations.
The Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority has recently published a list of improvement items needed for the Leiv Eiriksson to be able to operate on the Norwegian Continental Shelf.
A fleet status chart, recently published by Ocean Rig UDW, which owns the rig, shows that the Leiv Eiriksson is expected to be ready for operation at the early 2Q of 2013.