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Equinor hands out contracts for Oseberg oil-to-gas revamp

1 December 2021

Norwegian state controlled operator Equinor has awarded contracts for the Oseberg oil field conversion, it said November 26. It will become a substantial gas producer after new compressors have been installed and other works done, at a combined cost of Nkr 10bn ($1.1bn). The field will be the third biggest in terms of remaining reserves, with enough gas to supply 100bn m³ by 2040. Production from the new faciities is due to start in 2026.

The Oseberg Field Centre and Oseberg South platform will be partly electrified, further improving the carbon footprint of the project. Emissions have in any case fallen 15% since 2010.

“It is important to Equinor and the Oseberg partners to produce oil and gas with the lowest possible emission level. This investment decision allows us to increase production of Oseberg gas considerably in the future, while reducing CO2 emissions by an estimated 320,000 tonnes/year,” Equinor said.

The work involves installing three big modules totalling 3,400 tonnes and it will take four years to build the Oseberg Field Centre.

Oseberg was the third largest oil producer ever on the Norwegian Shelf and is expected to yield 3.2bn barrels of oil over its lifetime – three times the original plan.

Contract awards

It is estimated that more than 70% of investments in the Oseberg upgrades will go to suppliers in Norway.

Aibel has won the contract for engineering, procurement, construction, and installation for partial electrification of the Oseberg Field Centre and Oseberg South; electrical installations in a new substation at Kollsnes; and the gas processing capacity upgrade on the Oseberg Field Centre. The contract is valued at more than NKr 4bn.

Nexans will deliver the subsea power cables which are scheduled to be installed by the Nexans Aurora vessel in 2023. The contract value is calculated at more than Nkr 800mn.

Heerema Marine Contractors has been awarded a contract for transport and installation at an estimated value of Nkr 60mn. Its Sleipnir vessel is scheduled to lift the three big modules being built at Aibel’s yard in Haugesund.

Skanska has been awarded a contract to built a substation, dig cable trenches and make landfall at Kollsnes. This contract is a co-operation with the Troll West electrification project.

The contracts are subject to government approval of the plan for development and operation.

Equinor is operator with 49.3% and the state’s direct financial interest, managed by Petoro, is 33.6%. French TotalEnergies has 14.7% and the US major ConocoPhillips has 2.4%.

The Oseberg field centre in the North Sea. (Photo: Harald Pettersen / Equinor ASA)

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