Norway gets oil, gas field online early

March 19, 2013 at 6:37 AM

STAVANGER, Norway, March 19 (UPI) -- There's an estimated 90 million barrels of oil equivalent in the Skuld field in the Norwegian Sea, energy major Statoil said at the start of production.

Skuld consists of the Fossekall and Dompap discoveries in the Norwegian Sea. One of Statoil's fast-track projects, the company said 90 percent of the reserve estimate there is oil. Production came three years after the reserve was discovered.

Statoil said it expects Skuld to have a production life extending beyond 2030. The project represents an investment of around $1.7 billion.

Statoil said the project is expected to make up more than 50 percent of its oil and natural gas production from fields where it operates on the Norwegian shelf this year.

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate in January estimated there were around 480 billion cubic feet of oil equivalents offshore, an increase of 1.5 billion compared to last year's estimate. The government said that, under current market conditions, the increase equates to $268 billion.

Norway is the largest oil producer in Europe and the second-largest exporter of natural gas after Russia.

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