This month’s technology focus centers on the industry push into arctic exploration and production opportunities. Like deepwater, arctic regions of the world are believed to hold enormous potential oil and gas reserves. And like deepwater, operating under arctic conditions brings its own set of technological challenges.
As you will see, this month’s issue of Offshore examines some of the solutions developed for arctic exploration. You’ll want to look at all of them because tomorrow’s headlines may well come from these frozen locations.Despite the challenges, operators are investing in arctic areas where resource estimates range into the hundreds of billion boe, says Leta K. Smith of IHS, who authored a special arctic overview this month.
The arctic is a busy place again, but there has been a shift in the locus of activity, says Smith. Before 1980, Canada’s Mackenzie Delta dominated, with 50% of the exploration wells drilled. Exploration drilling shifted to
Since 2000, 149 exploration wells have been drilled in the arctic – 57 in the
Medium-sized companies and national oil companies are joining super-majors in many of the world’s technically challenging environments, Smith says.An area to watch is the US Beaufort Sea. In April, the MMS announced the preliminary award of 92 offshore tracts to six companies from the bid round held earlier in the year. The MMS estimated that the original 9.7 million acres offered could contain as much as 7 Bbbl oil and 32 tcf gas.In the Norwegian sector of the
Don’t miss Smith’s comprehensive analysis, followed by the full arctic report, beginning on page 32.DOT focus on
Not surprisingly, this month’s issue also highlights PennWell’s Deep Offshore Technology International Conference and Exhibition (DOT) to be held in