The plan for development and operation of the Valemon field in the North Sea has been submitted to the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy today with the goal of starting production in 2014.
Calling for the installation of a new unstaffed platform, the PDO has been presented for official approval by operator Statoil on behalf of the Valemon licence. The field contains some 206 million barrels of oil equivalent, and the partners intend to invest almost NOK 20 billion in the platform, pipelines and production wells.
“This is the second major development plan we’re submitting this year,” reports Øystein Michelsen, executive vice president for Exploration & Production Norway.
Statoil presented the PDO last spring for Gudrun, also in the North Sea. These two projects call for a combined investment of roughly NOK 40 billion.
“We’re very satisfied with these plans,” says Michelsen. “The two fields will make an important contribution to maintaining the level of activity on the NCS in coming years.”
The Valemon PDO embraces a fixed steel platform to separate gas, condensate (light oil) and water in the wellstream. It will normally be unstaffed after the drilling phase. Gas from the field will be carried via the existing pipeline from Huldra to Heimdal, a hub for onward transport to markets in the UK and continental Europe. The condensate is due to be piped to Kvitebjørn for stabilisation and onward transport to the Mongstad refinery near Bergen.
At the same time as submitting the PDO to the ministry, Statoil has started placing a number of contracts for the development. The group recently awarded letter of intent to Heerema Vlissingen BV after an international tendering round, covering construction of the steel jacket for the Valemon platform.
A similar preliminary order has been placed with Heerema Marine Contractors Nederland BV, again following international competition, for transport and installation of this structure.
The jacket is due to be ready in the spring of 2012. Contracts for the topside, including the living quarters, the pipelines, subsea umbilical and marine operations will be let in 2011-13.
An annual plateau output of roughly three billion cubic metres of gas from Valemon will make a key contribution to meeting Statoil’s goal of maintaining Norwegian offshore production in coming years.
Output from the field will also help to utilise spare capacity in the processing facilities on the Kvitebjørn and Heimdal installations.
“The Heimdal platform in particular depends on new gas volumes to extend its commercial life,” comments Michelsen. “Valemon’s contribution will make it possible to exploit other gas reserves in the area.”