The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has received a Plan for Development and Operation (PDO) for the Aasta Hansteen gas discovery in the Norwegian Sea and a Plan for Installation and Operation (PIO) for the Polarled gas transport system.
Statoil is the operator of Aasta Hansteen and Polarled during the development phase.
Aasta Hansteen was proven in 1997, and is located approx. 320 kilometres west of Bodø. Hansteen will be the northernmost field developed in the Norwegian Sea thus far, and could be a future field centre for other discoveries in the area.
The total recoverable reserves in Aasta Hansteen are estimated at NOK 45.4 billion standard cubic metres (Sm3) of gas and 0.9 million Sm3 of condensate. Production is scheduled to start in 2017.
The licensees want to develop Aasta Hansteen with a floating field centre, a so-called Spar facility. The size of the discovery, the considerable water depth and distance to other fields are important criteria for the chosen solution. The total investments in development of the field are estimated at NOK 30 billion.
The gas from Aasta Hansteen will be transported through the 480-kilometre long Polarled pipeline system to the Nyhamna onshore facility in Møre og Romsdal County. Eventually, gas from future field developments in the Norwegian Sea will also be exported via the pipeline system. Polarled is scheduled to be operational from 2016.
The project also includes expansions of the facility in Nyhamna and tie-in to the Åsgard transport pipeline system at the Kristin field. The total investments in Polarled and tie-in pipelines are estimated at NOK 28 billion.
The licensees in Aasta Hansteen are Statoil (75 per cent), OMV (Norge) (15 per cent) and ConocoPhillips (10 per cent).