Arctic Oil Discovery Heralds More Finds in Norway’s Barents
By Mikael Holter
The Gohta discovery in the Barents Sea announced by Lundin last month was Norway’s first in Permian rocks, formed more than 250 million years ago, the company’s Norway head Torstein Sanness said in an interview. Holding as much as 145 million barrels of oil, Gohta opens as many as 10 possible drilling targets in the surrounding area, he said.
“We’re hoping for a string of pearls,” said Sanness, whose company made Norway’s biggest oil find in decades in 2010. “We plan to build resources aggressively over the next years, so there’s little doubt we’ll reach the commercial threshold” for developing Gohta.
After a decade of falling oil production, drilling in the Barents Sea is helping to revive interest in Norwegian exploration. Austria’s OMV AG (OMV) also announced a discovery last month in the area, north of Norway’s traditional oil-producing region in the North Sea. Statoil made the first commercial oil discoveries in more than a decade in 2011 and 2012 and further successes will make developing oil infrastructure in the remote Arctic region viable.
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