The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has granted Eni Norge a drilling permit for the Aurelia wildcat well.
The well is located in the Barents Sea and will be drilled using the Scarabeo 8 drilling facility.
“The area in this licence consists of part of block 7220/1. The well will be drilled about 250 kilometres (155.34 miles) north of Hammerfest”, NPD said in a statement.
Eni To Start Drilling Offshore Norway
The wildcat well 7220/1-1 will be the first to be drilled within production licence 266, awarded in May 1997.
The well is 424 metres (1,391 feet) deep and drilling operations are estimated to last for 58 days, depending on whether a discovery is made.
The drilling rig – Scarabeo 8 – is owned by Saipem and consists on a semi-submersible drilling facility of the Moss CS 50 MkII design, winterised and designed to work at water depths of between 70 and 3,050 metres (229.6 feet to 10,006 feet).
Eni Norge operates the field, with an ownership interest of 60%, while DEA Norge holds 20% and Edison Norge a further 20%.
Gazprom Calls It Quits
While activity in the Norwegian Barents Sea continues at a significant pace, with another drilling permit awarded to Lundin Norway earlier this month, the Russian major Gazprom has said it would be “practically impossible” and “pointless” to progress with its strategy to conduct exploration drilling in the Barents Sea.
The company had planned to drill 12 exploration wells in the Barents by 2025 but this is now “a distant perspective”, it said in a statement. “Considering the current situation, it is clear that drilling in the Barents Sea license areas will be part of a distant perspective”, Gazprom said in its latest newsletter.
The Russian major controls a total of seven offshore licences in the Barents Sea.