Norsk Hydro's Canadian Output Rising

Norsk Hydro's oil investment offshore eastern Canada is paying off. The company's share of oil production in the Terra Nova and Hibernia fields is currently some 22,500 barrels per day and 10,000 bpd, respectively, compared with 15,800 bpd and 9,000 bpd in 2002. Hydro owns 15 percent and five percent stakes, respectively, in the Terra Nova and Hibernia fields. Terra Nova, operated by PetroCanada, and Hibernia, by ExxonMobil, presently produce respective totals of about 150,000 bpd and 200,000 bpd, according to Anders Kullerud, Hydro vice president of field development and operations in Canada. Kullerud said development of a satellite field tied into the Terra Nova acreage - dubbed Far East - will "arrest decline" of the field's combined total output after it comes on stream in 2005. The same applies to Hibernia, which will be able to maintain its combined peak production total once the Ben Nevis/Avalon satellite field is put into operation sometime in 2006. It is not yet decided whether Ben Nevis/Avalon will be developed as a satellite field or be directly tied into Hibernia, Kullerud commented. Hibernia, which started operating in 1998, presently produces about 200,000 bpd, he added.

Terra Nova's owners are: Petro-Canada (33.99 percent), ExxonMobil Canada (22 percent), Norsk Hydro Canada Oil & Gas Inc. (15 percent), Husky Oil Operations Ltd. (12.51 percent), Murphy Oil Company Ltd. (12 percent), Mosbacher Operating Ltd. (3.5 percent), and Chevron Canada Resources (1 percent).

Hibernia's owners are operator ExxonMobil (33.125 percent), Chevron Canada Resources (26.875 percent), Petro-Canada (20 percent), Canada Hibernia Holding Corporation (8.5 percent), Murphy Atlantic Offshore Oil Company Ltd. (6.5 percent) and Hydro (5 percent). The operation not only marked Hydro's first share of oil production outside the North Sea, but the first oil ever produced offshore Newfoundland.