Equinor and its partners will increase gas exports from two fields on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS) to supply the tight European market, which is facing a winter of gas shortages and sky-rocketing prices.

The government has increased the production permits for the Oseberg and Troll fields by 1 billion cubic metres (Bcm) each, starting 1 October.

Back in June, Norway’s state-owned energy giant took steps to evaluate and develop ways of enhancing production and exports for the European market resulting in the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy increasing its production permits for Oseberg and Troll.

Equinor and its partners are now able to produce 37 Bcm of gas from Troll and 6 Bcm from the Oseberg field in the current gas sector year.

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“The production permits allow us to produce more gas from these two important fields this [autumn] and through the winter. We believe that this is very timely as Europe is facing an unusually tight market for natural gas,” said Helge Haugane, Equinor's senior vice president Gas & Power.

“At Equinor, we are working on measures to increase exports from our fields on the NCS.”

After 25 years’ significant gas exports from Troll, about 50% of the gas is still unexploited.

It was with the objective of further developing the Troll area and bolstering its ability to secure gas deliveries to Europe in the coming decades, that Equinor recently completed the Troll Phase 3 project.

Carbon dioxide credentials

Recoverable volumes from Troll phase 3 — which will produce the Troll West gas cap with an industry-leading performance in terms of lower carbon dioxide emissions — are estimated at up to 347 Bcm of gas.

Total volumes remaining in the whole offshore field are estimated to be 715 Bcm.

“Now we are ramping up production at Troll following the completion of the Phase 3 project, and we expect to reach plateau production from 1 October," said Haugane.

“We take pride in being a long-term, reliable supplier of energy and we are happy that we have been able to identify ways to export as much as practically possible into this tight market.”

Troll phase 3 will extend the life of Troll A and the Kollsnes processing plant beyond 2050 and the plateau production period at the field by between five and seven years.