No less than 16 operator companies have now joined forces to overcome challenges posed by exploring the northern NCS. And their results will be shared openly with the industry.
Taking a Basec approach
The Barents Sea exploration collaboration (Basec) was launched this spring to lay the basis for increased coordination and cost-effective solutions in these waters.
“We’re focusing attention on challenges facing the exploration side of the business in the short and long terms,” says Statoil’s Åshild Tandberg Skjærseth, chair of the management committee.
“Joint solutions for such operations in the Barents Sea will help to maintain a good level of safety and emergency preparedness.”
The work is concentrated on five main topics – metocean and ice, environment and oil spill response, logistics and emergency preparedness, mobile drilling units, and health and the working environment.
All the participating companies are contributing their in-house experts to these five work groups.
“We’re well under way, with the first results due this autumn,” says Skjærseth. “They’ll be open to all operators and licensees on the NCS, and to relevant government agencies.”
Basec was originally established by Statoil, Eni, Engie (GDF Suez), Lundin and OMV, she reports.
“The aim was to bring together operators with experience from the Barents Sea or who had operations under way there, in order to share experience and learn from other.”
“But we quickly realised that a great deal of interest existed in joining the collaboration, including among operator companies with less experience of far northern exploration.
“That prompted us to open up the project to more participants, so that Basec today has a total of 16 members.”
The work relates to a number of the subjects identified in the major industry project on health, safety and working environment challenges in the far north.
Concluded last year, this study was led by the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association to learn more about northern operations and ensure a common understanding of the issues involved.
It identified important challenges related to the working environment, emergency preparedness, logistics and design, communication and weather forecasting.
“The Basec collaboration will run to the end of 2017 with opportunities to extend this period if the members wish,” explains Skjærseth.
- GDF Suez (Engie )
- Det Norske Oljeselskap
- Norske Shell
- Tullow Oil
Safety in the far north is one of the PSA’s main priorities for 2015.
The aim is to help ensure that petroleum operations on the northern NCS are prudent and safeguard people, the environment and material assets.