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Statoil's Arctic exploration fails to find oil

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Staff Writer | August 31, 2017
Statoil and partners have proven a small, non-commercial gas volume in the Korpfjell well in the Barents Sea southeast.
Korpfjell well
Oil exploration   "The main question was whether we would find anything at all"
Korpfjell is the first exploration well drilled in the Norwegian section of a formerly disputed area between Norway and Russia.

“We have all the time pointed out the high level of geological uncertainty related to Korpfjell. The main question was whether we would find anything at all – and if we did, would it hold gas or oil.”

“Korpfjell is a structure of a size seldom seen on the Norwegian Continental Shelf and has attracted much interest, and the results of the first well in this frontier area of the Barents Sea have triggered broad and strong expectations.

“For this reason, it has been important to us to complete this drilling,” says Jez Averty, Statoil’s head of exploration in Norway and the UK.

The main purpose of the well was to prove whether there was any oil in the large geological structure on Korpfjell. The drilling has only proven small gas volumes.

The gas discovery is estimated to contain 40-75 million barrels of recoverable oil equivalents (6-12 billion standard cubic metres of gas), but the volume is not large enough for a commercial development.

The gas was proven in the well’s main target. Statoil and its licence partners will now start analysing the well data acquired.

“The results are of course disappointing, but it is too early to draw any conclusions on how this will impact the Barents Sea southeast area,” says Averty.

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