Shell Gets Fram Field Consent

The UK government announced Monday it has given consent to Royal Dutch Shell for it to develop the Fram oil and gas field offshore UK.

The Fram field, located 135 miles east of Aberdeen in around 330 feet of water, is expected to produce an average of 35,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, according to the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

In a statement, UK Energy Minister John Hayes commented:

"The durability of oil production in the North Sea constantly confounds expectation. It is a tribute to the high-tech advances and expertise of British industry, which has constantly pushed the boundaries of what can be produced.

"Fram itself will add around 2 percent to our oil and gas production – securing jobs, creating revenue and adding to our security of supply. This announcement shows that by working with industry and by creating the right fiscal environment, our oil supplies will continue to be an asset to Britain for years to come."

In a separate statement, Glen Cayley – head of Shell's UK upstream business – said:

"This is an exciting announcement for Shell and a positive demonstration of our commitment to technological innovation as we pursue field developments in the UK. Large developments such as Fram will stimulate supply chain and employment opportunities in this latest phase of development for the UK continental shelf."

The development plan for the Fram field includes eight production wells, one production water re-injection well, two subsea drills centers and a subsea flowline bundle that will all produce to an FPSO vessel.

The field is a joint venture, with Shell holding a 32-percent stake and its partner Esso Exploration & Production UK holding the remaining 68 percent. (The Shell/Esso Fram field is not related to Statoil's Fram field in the Norwegian zone of the North Sea.)

A former engineer, Jon is an award-winning editor who has covered the technology, engineering and energy sectors since the mid-1990s. Email Jon at


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