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Consent to exploration drilling - production license 225 in the Barents Sea

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) has granted its consent to Norsk Hydro for use of the mobile drilling rig Eirik Raude to drill exploration well 7220/6-1 in the Barents Sea.

The PSA has regulatory responsibility for safety, emergency preparedness and working environment in the petroleum activities. In its exercise of this responsibility, the PSA has coordinating tasks in relation to the other authorities with independent regulatory responsibility. This applies to agencies such as the Norwegian Pollution Control Authority (SFT) and the Norwegian Board of Health (HTil).

This consent applies to the first planned exploration well in the Barents Sea after the area was re-opened for exploration drilling.

The consent, which was issued on 28 October, applies to drilling and limited formation testing of exploration well 7220/6-1 in the Barents Sea, in production license 225. The drilling and well activity will be carried out in connection with the NOBALES drilling campaign for 2004/2005.

Water depth at the location is approximately 370 meters. The activity is expected to last for 30 days.

The Eirik Raude is owned and operated by Ocean Rig A/S. The rig received an Acknowledgement of Compliance on 15 September 2004. (Link)

Contact in the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway:
Ole-Johan Faret
Acting press contact