"Onshore processing is as profitable as a solely offshore development. Besides the financial aspect, our recommendation is also based on a total evaluation of technology, health, environment, safety and social issues," says Hydro's President and CEO Eivind Reiten.
Production start for Ormen Lange is scheduled for October 2007. Application and plan for development and operation will be submitted to the authorities in 2003. Construction will start in 2004.
The two alternative development concepts are either a full-process platform offshore or a subsea production system offshore combined with an onshore plant for processing and gas export to the market.
Norsk Hydro, operator for the development phase, considers both alternatives to be profitable and technically feasible. However, the company recommends a subsea production system on the Ormen Lange field combined with a processing and export plant onshore at Nyhamna.
The recommendation for the development concept will be further discussed by the owners this autumn and the final concept determined by the licensees this year. Until a final decision has been made, Norsk Hydro will continue developing the two alternative concepts in parallel, in order to avoid any delay in the concept selection phase.
Ormen Lange is the largest gas field to be developed on the Norwegian continental shelf. It is located about 100 km west of the coast of More, at 1000 meters water depth. Gas reserves are estimated at 375 billion Sm3.
The partners in the Ormen Lange license are: Norsk Hydro (operator of the development phase), Norske Shell (operator of the operations phase), Petoro, Statoil, ExxonMobil and BP.
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