Inspenet, December 8, 2023.
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has carried out a detailed analysis of gas resources in Norway that, for various reasons, have not yet been exploited. It has been identified that several of these discoveries could be developed profitably from a socioeconomic perspective.
Currently, about 65% of the total gas resources on the Norwegian shelf remain untapped. Among these remaining gas resources, some face various challenges that could complicate their production process. The NPD has mapped these resources that lack specific development plans and has examined possible measures that could be implemented to facilitate their exploitation.
Gas resources in Norway
“Even though gas has a significantly higher recovery rate than oil, we will never be able to produce it all. There are usually good reasons for low recovery rates in gas fields. We believe licensees are doing a good job of maximizing recovery. Beyond this, it is difficult to extract more gas“says Kjersti Dahle, Director of Technology, Analysis and Coexistence at the NPD.
And he goes on to say that ” identifying which gas resources are difficult to develop and what is needed to ensure they are produced, gives us a solid basis for dialogue and possible measures together with the industry so that these resources can be recovered .”
The context of this situation is that, in accordance with current plans and projects, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) anticipates that gas production on the Norwegian shelf will remain at high levels in the next five years . However, after this period, production is expected to experience a notable and rapid decline.
“There are considerable gas resources in discoveries and fields in operation. It makes sense to think that higher gas prices can drive the necessary technological development, coordination and new infrastructure to make this gas a reality, as long as there is the will and ability to do so. this“says Dahle.
As of December 31, 2022, 84 gas discoveries have been identified on the platform with a total reserve of 1,273 GSm3 of gas in place (GSm3 – billion standard cubic meters). These resources are distributed in deposits with various levels of complexity, which has presented challenges for their effective development.
Calculations by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) indicate considerable potential value in many of these discoveries, although there is high uncertainty about how much can be realised.
This uncertain outlook is attributed to challenges in the subsurface, such as tight reservoirs, high pressure and temperature, challenging gas quality and/or low pressure. Additionally, export options, operating costs and future gas price projections will also influence the viability of developing these resources.
Likewise, the lack of infrastructure capacity for gas transportation is a particular problem in the Barents Sea, since Melkøya is fully committed until after 2040. In this context, the need for coordination and the creation of new capacity for gas transportation and export clearly arises.
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