Barents Sea News

19 Dec 2018

Ocean Installer Clinches Johan Castberg Deal

Image: Equinor

Norwegian subsea contractor Ocean Installer and Norwegian multinational energy company Equinor ASA have signed a contract that covers the floating production storage and offloading unit (FPSO) mooring installation, tow out and hook-up of the Johan Castberg FPSO in the Barents Sea.Johan Castberg is one of the largest subsea field developments on the Norwegian continental shelf. The project includes Skrugard, Havis and Drivis, which lies about 240 kilometers from Hammerfest and about 100 kilometers north of Snøhvit.The water depth is between 360 and 405 meters.

11 Dec 2018

AET Grows in Brazil

Eagle Paraiba. Photo: AET_Tankers

With the ongoing development of deepwater pre-salt plays and a decreased demand on local content in tankers and other vessels, Brazilian national operator Petrobras and other super-majors have been looking abroad for better rates and reliable operators of shuttle tankers. Claudio Paschoa, Maritime Reporter’s correspondent in Brazil spoke to Peter Liew, Global Director – Mid Size Tankers, Crude Shipping, about AET Tankers’ history and its operations in Brazil.AET (formerly American Eagle Tankers) was founded in Houston in 1994 primarily to conduct lightering operations in the Gulf of Mexico.

06 Dec 2018

ESVAGT Eyes Arctic Opportunities

Esvagt Aurora (Photo: ESVAGT)

Offshore vessel owner ESVAGT says it has set its sights on growth opportunities in Arctic regions where an uptick in oil and gas production is expected in coming years. In the Barents Sea, for example, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate as recently as 2017 updated its evaluation of the area’s oil and gas reserves to over 17 billion barrels, a doubling compared to prior estimates.ESVAGT says it possesses the particular skillset and assets required for operations in the Arctic."It is on many levels challenging to work in the Arctic regions…

22 Nov 2018

Equinor Energy Strikes Gas in Barents Sea

Image: Equinor Energy

Norwegian multinational energy company Equinor Energy has made discovery containing up to 24billion cubic feet of gas in the Barents Sea. Two exploration targets were found, with the first containing between 10 and 20billion cubic feet, the other between one and four billion.The discovery’s profitability is currently unclear, said a statement from the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD)."Equinor Energy AS has completed the drilling of wildcat well  about 15 kilometres northwest of discovery well (Atlantis) and 370 kilometres north of Hammerfest.

21 Nov 2018

Johan Castberg Topside Construction Begins

(Image: Equinor)

Norwegian minister of petroleum and energy Kjell-Børge Freiberg cut the first sheet for the topside of the Johan Castberg floating production, storage and offloading unit (FPSO) at Kværner's yard at Stord on Wednesday as part of a large scale  project triggering ripple effects throughout Norway.The topside will be installed on the 200-meter long FPSO vessel that will be producing on the Johan-Castberg field for 30 years from the planned production start in 2022.The field development concept includes a FPSO vessel and extensive subsea development…

25 Sep 2018

Lundin Petroleum Says Arctic Oil Test Points to Bigger Reservoir

(Photo: Lundin Petroleum)

Swedish oil firm Lundin Petroleum expects to increase its resource estimate for the Alta discovery in Norway's Arctic region following a successful two-month production test.Finding significant oil reserves in the Norwegian Arctic has been challenging for oil firms, but Alta is among the exceptions along with ENI's Goliat field and Equinor's Johan Castberg discovery.Lundin and its partners are considering developing the discovery as a subsea field connected to a floating production and storage vessel…

31 Aug 2018

Bristow Commences New Contract in Barents Sea

Photo: ENI Norge AS

Bristow Norway AS is commencing a previously announced five-year contract today (September 1, 2018), from its Hammerfest base. Bristow will provide helicopter offshore crew change services and search and rescue (SAR) services to support Eni Norway and Equinor."We are very proud of the recognition we have received in securing this work in the Barents Sea," said Area Manager Norway Heidi Wulff Heimark. "This confirms that the work our employees do every day brings results. The contract…

24 Aug 2018

Alcatel Submarine Networks Bags Contract from Equinor

Photo: Equinor

Digital technology developed in Norway will help improve recovery from the Johan Castberg field in the Barents Sea.Equinor has awarded Alcatel Submarine Networks a contract for permanent reservoir monitoring (PRM), which in turn has signed a letter of intent with Nexans Norway AS for delivery of subsea cable.“PRM is a central element of the digital strategy for Johan Castberg and will be an important tool in improving the Johan Castberg recovery rate,” says Johan Castberg project director Knut Gjertsen.The technology is developed in Norway…

23 Aug 2018

Kongsberg to help outfit Awilco Rig

Photo: Kongsberg Maritime

Kongsberg Maritime has been selected by global offshore and marine group Keppel Offshore & Marine to provide an extensive and integrated technology delivery for a new semi-submersible drilling rig ordered by UK-based drilling contractor Awilco Drilling PLC. The contract is valued at around $18 million. Based on the Moss Maritime CS60 ECO MW design, Awilco Drilling’s new rig is designed for harsh environment use, and will be equipped and certified for drilling on the Norwegian Continental Shelf…

27 Jun 2018

Russian Arctic LNG Debuts on NSR to Asia

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Fotmart)

A landmark Russian Arctic liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipment has begun its journey through the Northern Sea Route (NSR) to Asia, marking the delayed start of summer navigation as thawing sea ice clears a short-cut to the world's biggest LNG market. The $27 billion Yamal LNG plant developed by Russia's Novatek and France's Total despite U.S. sanctions started exporting in December, but cargoes ferried on ice-class LNG tankers have sailed to Europe. From there, Yamal's LNG was…

21 Jun 2018

Oil Exploration Is Ramping Up Off Norway

Photo: Ole Jørgen Bratland / © Equinor

Oil firms are expected to drill 40-50 exploration wells off Norway this year compared to 36 wells drilled the previous year, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate said on Thursday.The Norwegian continental shelf still held an estimated 4 billion cubic meters (25.2 billion barrels) of oil equivalents in undiscovered petroleum resources, with two-thirds located in the Arctic Barents Sea, it added.Half of estimated undiscovered resources in the Barents Sea, however, are located north of the areas opened for petroleum activities, and it's unclear when oil firms can get access to them.(Reporting by N

18 Jun 2018

Norway Awards Oil Permits to 11 Firms in Arctic Licensing Round

The West Hercules drilling rig in the Barents Sea. (Photo: Ole Jørgen Bratland / Equinor)

Norway has awarded 12 oil and gas exploration licences to Equinor and 10 other companies focused mostly on the Arctic, where Oslo believes it has the greatest potential for significant new discoveries.Nine of the licences are located in the Barents Sea and three in the Norwegian Sea off central Norway, the Ministry of Oil and Energy said on Monday."This licensing round confirms that the oil companies see opportunities for further profitable petroleum activity in the north," Oil and Energy Minister Terje Soeviknes said in a statement.Equinor…

29 May 2018

GONDAN Bags Stern Trawler Build Contract

Photo courtesy of GONDAN

Norwegian fishery and fish farm owner Prestfjord AS has chosen Asturian shipyard GONDAN for the construction of a complex and advanced stern trawler.GONDAN will build an advanced stern trawler for Prestfjord AS, for whom the shipyard had already delivered another technologically advanced freezing stern trawler, Sunderøy.This new vessel, designed by Rolls Royce Marine - in charge also of supplying the main equipment - will have a length of 77.3 m and a beam of 17 m. Built in steel with aluminum superstructure…

28 May 2018

AET Secures DP2 Shuttle Tankers with Petrobras

Photo:  AET Tankers Pte Ltd

Petroleum tanker owner and operator AET announced the extension of partnership in the DP2 shuttle tanker sector with Petróleo Brasileiro S.A.(Petrobras), the Brazilian multinational petroleum corporation. "Recently we were awarded a contract to own and operate four specialist DP2 Suezmax Shuttle Tankers on long-term charter by Petrobras. These new vessels will be in addition to the two AET DP2 ships currently on charter in the Brazilian Basin for Petrobras," said a press release from the company.

09 May 2018

Norway Launches New Licensing Round in Mature Offshore Areas

© h368k742 / Adobe Stock

Norway will hold a new licensing round for its offshore oil and gas fields in already opened areas, further expanding the exploration acreage available to energy firms, the oil ministry said on Wednesday.Areas in the North Sea, the Norwegian Sea and the Barents Sea will be offered to oil companies, who have until September to submit their applications. The ministry plans to award licenses at the beginning of 2019, it said."Access to prospective exploration acreage is crucial in order to make new petroleum discoveries.

18 Apr 2018

Eni has no plans to pull out of Rosneft deal after sanctions

Claudio Descalzi (Photo: Eni)

Italian oil major Eni has no plans to pull out of its joint venture with Russia's Rosneft despite escalating sanctions against Russia, the head of Eni said on Wednesday."We certainly have not pulled out, we're working with them," CEO Claudio Descalzi said on the sidelines of a conference.Eni, one of Europe's biggest importers of Russian gas, extended a cooperation agreement with Rosneft last year to explore the Russian Barents Sea and the Black Sea, and to consider further opportunities together.But after the United States imposed major new sanctions against Russia earlier this month, speculat

13 Apr 2018

Fire in Sauna Shuts World's Northernmost Oilfield

Goliat FPSO (© Eni Norge)

The world's northernmost oilfield was shut on Friday when a fire broke out in a sauna in the oil platform's living quarters, Eni, the Italian oil company that operates the field, said. The Arctic Goliat field is in the Barents Sea about 88 kilometers off the coast of Norway and inside the Arctic Circle. The platform has floating production, storage and offloading facilities and can produce close to 100,000 barrels of crude per day. The fire was quickly put out, and no crew members were injured, although some smoke did develop, Eni said.

23 Mar 2018

Near Record Low Arctic Ocean Ice a Boost for Shipping

© Misiurin Viacheslav / Adobe Stock

Winter sea ice on the Arctic Ocean covered the second smallest area on record this year, part of a thaw that is opening the region to shipping and oil exploration and may be disrupting weather far to the south, scientists said on Friday. The extent of floating ice likely reached an annual maximum of 14.5 million square kilometers (5.6 million square miles) on March 17, fractionally bigger than a record set in 2017, the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) said. Sea ice around the North Pole freezes to its biggest at the end of the winter in March…

12 Mar 2018

Keppel Bags Awilco's Semi-submersible Rig Order

The Offshore Division, helmed by Keppel FELS, leads the industry in the design and building of high performance mobile offshore rigs. Photo Keppel

Following the Letter of Intent signed by Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Keppel FELS Limited, with Awilco Drilling PLC, Keppel has secured the contract to construct a mid-water semisubmersible (semi) drilling rig for harsh environment use worth about $425 million. As part of the transaction, Awilco has independent options to order up to another three similar rigs to be exercised within 12, 24 and 36 months respectively. The prices of the three…

01 Mar 2018

West Phoenix to Drill in UK and Norway

The West Phoenix drilling rig. Photo Statoil

Statoil and its partners have contracted the West Phoenix rig for exploration drilling on the U.K. and Norwegian continental shelves from the summer of 2018. The contract is awarded to the two Seadrill companies North Atlantic Drilling UK Ltd. and North Atlantic Norway Ltd. The semi-submersible rig West Phoenix will first drill an exploration well for the Ragnfrid North license on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS), followed by three wells on the U.K. Continental Shelf (UKCS). The rig has been approved by authorities for use both on the NCS and UKCS.

05 Feb 2018

Statoil Contracts West Hercules Rig

The West Hercules drilling rig in the Barents Sea. (Photos: Ole Jørgen Bratland)

The West Hercules semi-submersible rig has been contracted for drilling two exploration wells in the Barents Sea in 2018, and options to drill another five exploration wells. Statoil and the licence partners have signed a contract with North Atlantic Norway Ltd for use of the 6th generation West Hercules rig. The total estimated contract value is USD 15-20 million for the two permanent wells. Portrait - Geir TungesvikGeir Tungesvik, head of Drilling and Well in Statoil. Mobilisation and demobilization are included in the amount…

17 Jan 2018

Norway: We Must Prepare for Arctic Oil Race with Russia

© ggw / Adobe Stock

Norway must identify potential offshore oil and gas reserves near its northern maritime border with Russia to better protect its economic interest in the remote Arctic region, energy minister Terje Soeviknes said on Wednesday. The two countries agreed in 2010 to split previously disputed areas of the Barents Sea between them, allowing each to exploit resources hidden beneath the seabed. An increase in drilling activity on the Russian side of the border should lead Norway to push its own agenda, the minister said. "We need to start the discussion about what to do in the far north.

08 Jan 2018

Battle of the Atlantic Memorial Planned in Liverpool

Left to right: BOA veteran Jim Rainsford, Vice Admiral Mike Gretton campaign chairman, veteran Graeme Cubbin (Photo: Battle of the Atlantic Memorial Campaign)

A fundraising campaign to build a international memorial dedicated to the estimated 100,000 people who lost their lives during the Battle of the Atlantic in World War II, as well as those who served and survived, is being launched in Liverpool. The Battle of the Atlantic Memorial (BOAM), the charity leading the campaign, will stage a press call with war veterans on the Liverpool’s iconic waterfront to launch the fundraising effort to build the 28 meter monument in the shape of a merchant ship split in two.

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