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Norway’s energy major Equinor this week officially reopened the Njord gas field in the Norwegian Sea, aiming to more than double the field’s production and raise Norwegian gas exports to Europe.
The Njord field, which started production in 1997, was originally planned to produce until 2013. But systematic work with increased recovery means that there are still large volumes of oil and gas left. New discoveries in the area can also be produced and exported via Njord, Equinor said in a statement.
In 2016, the platform and the floating storage and offloading vessel (FSO) were disconnected to undergo extensive upgrades. The field is now ready to produce oil and gas for the next 20 years.
Equinor now plans to drill new wells on Njord from an upgraded drilling facility and to carry out more exploration close to the field.
“With the prices we anticipate in the coming years this comprehensive upgrading project will be repaid in just under two years after startup,” said Grete B. Haaland, Equinor’s senior vice president for exploration and production north.
The oil produced at the field is piped to the Njord Bravo FSO and onwards by tankers to the market. Gas from the field is exported through a 40-kilometer pipeline connected to the Åsgard transport system (ÅTS) and from there to the Kårstø terminal.
Commenting on the resumption of production at the field, Terje Aasland, Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy, said,
“With the war in Ukraine, the export of Norwegian oil and gas to Europe has never been more important than now. Reopening Njord contributes to Norway remaining a stable supplier of gas to Europe for many years to come.”
Equinor is now the single biggest provider of natural gas to Europe after Russia’s Gazprom cut off most of its supply to the EU after the Russian invasion of Ukraine early last year.
By Tom Kool for Oilprice.com
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Tom majored in International Business at Amsterdam’s Higher School of Economics, he is Oilprice.com's Head of Operations