More Arctic Norwegian Shelf Resources Mapped
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate’s (NPD’s) mapping of the southeastern Barents Sea and the area surrounding Jan Mayen shows 15% increase.
The increase will result in an approximate increase of 15 per cent in the estimates of undiscovered resources on the Norwegian shelf which corresponds to about 390 million standard cubic metres (Sm3) of oil equivalents (o.e.). The mapping of these petroleum resources is a step in the authorities’ process to open these areas for petroleum activity.
Southeastern Barents Sea
The mapped area in the southeastern Barents Sea along the Russian border constitutes about 44 000 square kilometres. The NPD’s calculations show that expected resources total approx. 300 million Sm3 o.e., with an uncertainty range of 55 – 565 million Sm3 o.e. This means that the most pessimistic estimates lie at the low end of the spectrum, but that the petroleum volumes present could be considerably greater. Most of the resources in this part of the Barents Sea are expected to be gas. About 15 per cent are expected to be oil.
During the same period, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate mapped possible petroleum resources in the sea area surrounding Jan Mayen. Seismic and aeromagnetic data, as well as numerous source rock samples, have been acquired in recent years in parts of the 100 000-square-kilometre area which may be opened.
The uncertainty regarding the area’s petroleum potential is considerable, because we have less knowledge here than, for example, in the southeastern Barents Sea where exploration wells have been drilled in adjacent areas already opened for petroleum activity. The expected resources in the Jan Mayen area are estimated at 90 million Sm3 o.e. The estimates indicate that there could be considerable resources in the area.