Possible Link Seen Between Geitungen, Johan Sverdrup Discoveries

Statoil's Geitungen oil discovery is likely linked to the Johan Sverdrup discovery in the Norwegian North Sea, the company reported Monday.

Statoil has estimated the Geitungen discovery, drilled approximately 1.8 miles (3 kilometers) north of Johan Sverdrup, to hold between 140 million and 270 million barrels of gross recoverable oil.

Drilled by Diamond Offshore Ocean Vanguard (mid-water semisub) in Production License (PL) 265, Well 16/2-12 proved a gross 114 feet (35 meter) gross oil column in high quality sandstone of Jurassic age. The well was drilled to a total depth of 6,709 feet (2,045 meters) below mean sea level.

Well data indicates that there is probably a link between the two discoveries.

"A new oil discovery in the Johan Sverdrup area, in the mature part of the North Sea, reinforces Statoil's faith in the exploration potential of the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS), and demonstrates that we deliver on our strategy of revitalizing the NCS with high value barrels," said Gro Haatvedt, senior vice president of exploration in Norway with Statoil, in a statement Monday.

Johan Sverdrup is one of the largest discoveries made on the Norwegian Continental Shelf since the mid-1980s, Statoil reported earlier this year.

Johan Sverdrup comprises two discoveries which form one field. Johan Sverdrup is located 87 miles (140 kilometers) west of Stavanger, Norway. The plan of development and operation for the field is scheduled to be submitted in the fourth quarter of 2014, Statoil said in a May, 10, 2012 statement.

Production is expected to begin in the final three months of 2018, with production to continue until 2050, Statoil said.

Haatvedt said Statoil aimed to capture the full potential in the greater Utsira High area, securing new promising acreage north and south of Johan Sverdrup in Awards in Predefined Areas 2011.

"We are currently working to improve seismic imaging of the greater Utsira High and have ambitious drilling plans with about eight to 12 wells scheduled for 2012 to 2014," Haatvedt said.

Geitungen will be included in the ongoing development work for the Johan Sverdrup field to help narrow down the volume range and uncertainty for Johan Sverdrup, said Oivind Reinertsen, Statoil VP for Johan Sverdrup field development.

Partner Det norske oljeselskap ASA announced the Geitungen discovery on Aug. 17.

Statoil and Lundin are both conducting extensive appraisal programs for Johan Sverdrup in PL265 and PL501.

Ocean Vanguard will next drill two appraisal wells in the central and southern parts of PL265.

Statoil Petroleum AS is operator of PL265 with 40 percent interest. Partners include Petoro with 30 percent, Det norske oljeselskap with 20 percent and Lundin with 10 percent.

"The discovery supports our view that the Greater Luno area contains excellent exploration potential and that further discoveries will be made in the region," said Lundin President and CEO Ashley Heppenstall in a statement. "Our exploration program in the area will continue in 2012 with the drilling of the Luno II prospect in PL359."

Karen Boman has more than 10 years of experience covering the upstream oil and gas sector. Email Karen at kboman@rigzone.com


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