Gazprom to resume Kara Sea drilling
Oil and gas drillings in Russia’s Arctic Kara Sea were all suspended after USA and EU introduced sanctions in 2014 limiting access to necessary offshore technology.
Gazprom, the largest state-controlled energy conglomerate, is now looking for a rig and support vessel for drilling one of the most promising natural gas condensate fields on the Arctic shelf, the Leningradskaya in southern Kara Sea. Located west of the Yamal Peninsula, the field is believed to hold a trillion cubic metre of gas three million tons of gas condensate.
With reference to Gazprom’s announced tender, the Russian oil and gas magazine Neftegaz.ru reports that Gazprom is looking for three service vessels to assist the rig, two tugs and a passenger vessels for the coming summer. The initial contract is worth 1,7 billion rubles (€26,8 million).
The two tugs will in addition to tow the rig to its location also be on stand-by for removing icebergs if necessary.
Gazprom confirms to RIA Novosti the plan to resume drilling in 2017.
Based on earlier seismic, Gazprom says promising oil and gas may be located at a depth from 900 to 4.200 m below the seabed, Neftegaz.ru reports.
Last drillings in the Kara Sea was in 2014 when Rosneft in partnership with ExxonMobil made a discovery of more than 130 million tons of oil ad the University-1 (Pobeda) structure. A second drilling scheduled for 2015 was halted as a result of USA’s Russian sanction regime.
Head of ExxonMobil at the time was Rex Tillerson. He is now Secretary of State.