Russia’s Novatek signed a series of partnership deals for the equipment supply and the development of Arctic projects. The company announced an agreement with Gazprom Neft to establish a joint venture, aiming to explore and develop Arctic hydrocarbon fields.
In order to protect the coastline of the US from the dangers of offshore oil drilling, Congressman Jared Huffman reintroduced, on January 8 the West Coast Ocean Protection Act and the Stop Arctic Ocean Drilling Act. TThe Stop Arctic Ocean Drilling Act would make the Arctic Ocean off-limits to any future drilling proposals by not allowing any new or renewed leases for the exploration, development, or production of oil, natural gas or any other minerals in the Arctic Ocean Planning Areas of the Outer Continental Shelf.
Russian natural gas producer Novatek, through its wholly owned subsidiary Arctic LNG 3, announced discovery of a new natural gas and gas condensate field at the North-Obskiy license area, located in the shallow waters of the Ob Bay, in the Arctic Ocean.
The Norwegian government issued a proposal to increase funding to geological surveying with NOK 50 million, to boost knowledge through mapping of the petroleum resources in the Northern parts of the Barents Sea. The acquired seismic data will provide important information about the geology of the Barents Sea.
Equinor, former Statoil, was granted five licences and will take part as a non-operating participant in two more. In addition, Shell, Aker BP, Lundin, OMV and Spirit Energy, also received license for operations. Moreover, DEA, Idemitsu, M Vest Energy, VNG and Wintershall were awarded participating interest.
In response to the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s call for nominations covering a proposed lease sale in Alaska’s Beaufort Sea, WWF warned that any step to expose America’s Arctic Ocean to offshore drilling, threatens the region’s marine wildlife and coastal communities, as well as the ecological future of the Arctic itself.
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