Norway Places Soldiers On O&G Facilities, Armed Forces Patrolling

Norway Places Soldiers On O&G Facilities, Armed Forces Patrolling
After Norway increased readiness on the NCS, soldiers were placed on oil and gas facilities, and the Norwegian Armed Forces are patrolling the area.

After the Norwegian Government increased readiness on the Norwegian continental shelf, the Norwegian Armed Forces enhanced its presence, and soldiers were placed on oil and gas facilities.

The Norwegian Armed Forces said they were present and conducting patrols with assets on land, in the air, at sea, underwater, and in cyberspace.

The Royal Norwegian Navy is in dialogue with its partners to coordinate security and readiness measures in our common waters. Several maritime assets are put in force to support the heightened security and readiness on the Norwegian shelf. 

The Royal Norwegian Air Force is conducting frequent patrols with F-35 fighter jets, both from Ørland Air Base and the Quick Reaction Alert out of Evenes Air Base. Friday aircraft patrolled Norwegian territory, including the oil and gas facilities at Draugen and Heidrun oil fields.

The Norwegian Armed Forces did not go into further details regarding specific measures the Norwegian emergency readiness agencies have put in force. “Knowledge about these measures makes it easier for an actor to avoid them, and in next place reducing the overall security,” they said.

The Armed Forces monitor all activity in our area of responsibility and have a good overview of the activity through our daily operations. They also keep an eye on the situation and keep a close dialogue with the Norwegian Police to share and uphold common situational understanding.

“We keep supporting the Norwegian police and look into how we can contribute further to support the security and readiness on the shelf,” the Armed Forces added.

In a statement from Monday, the Armed Forces said that soldiers from the Home Guard would contribute to increased guarding and patrolling at petroleum facilities in Rogaland, Vestland, and Møre og Romsdal from October 3.

The assignment takes place following a request for assistance from the police. The Home Guard will assist the police in averting and preventing punishable or unwanted incidents in Norway.

Soldiers from Agder and Rogaland Home Guard District 08, Bergenhus Home Guard District 09, and Møre and Fjordane Home Guard District 11 are used for this mission. The Home Guard is prepared that the assignment can be extended to apply to several places in the country if the police should request it.

All this heightened security was brought on by a sharp drop in pressure on both Nord Stream pipelines registered last Monday along with detected explosions which led to speculation about who sabotaged this massive Russian asset.

It didn’t take long for Russia to blame the West for sabotage while the West looked to Russia as the culprit. Due to this Cold War-like scenario, several EU countries with North Sea assets increased readiness in case of a similar occurrence.

One of the most recent companies to do so was ConocoPhillips which elevated the security level and emergency preparedness for our offshore and onshore facilities in Scandinavia.

“We confirm having made drone observations and we cooperate with the authorities. We do not disclose further details,” the company said in a press release.

In the meantime, gas leaks from the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines in the Baltic Sea have stopped after stable pressure was achieved over the weekend. The Danish Energy Agency said Nord Stream AG will be allowed to assess the damage only after the pressure has stabilized. To remind, four gas leaks were found on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines last week.

The Integrated Carbon Observation System reported that an enormous amount of methane gas was discharged into the atmosphere due to damage to the two gas pipelines. Fortunately, neither of the two pipelines is operational as Russia shut Nord Stream 1 at the end of August and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz halted the certification of Nord Stream 2 due to the invasion of Ukraine.

To contact the author, email bojan.lepic@rigzone.com


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