The first barrel of oil has been produced from one of the largest new drilling operations in the North Sea. Located around 125 km east of the Shetland Islands, Enquest invested £2 billion in the Kraken oilfield.
The oilfield is expected to contain around 128 million barrels of oil and support more than 1,000 jobs in the UK for each year of its more than 20-year lifespan.
Gross peak oil production from Kraken is expected to be approximately 50,000 barrels of oil per day
The Kraken and Kraken North area is estimated to have 3% of remaining N. Sea oil reserves, 2% of total oil and gas reserves and, at peak in 2019, to be responsible for 3% of total UK oil and gas production.
Edinburgh-based oil and gas minnow Cairn Energy has a stake of just under 30% in Kraken.
Amjad Bseisu, Enquest chief executive, said: “We are delighted to confirm that first oil has been delivered on schedule and under budget.
“Drill centres 1 and 2 are fully complete and work continues on drill centre 3; as a result, further production capacity will come online into 2018 as these further wells are put onstream.
“Kraken is a transformational project, made possible by EnQuest’s differential capabilities; the right mix of integrated technical capabilities, high levels of efficiency and cost discipline. With production from Kraken, EnQuest is moving from a period of heavy capital investment, to a focus on cash generation and deleveraging the balance sheet.”
Dr. Andy Samuel, chief executive of the Aberdeen-based Oil and Gas Authority, commented:“As one of the most significant oil field projects in the North Sea, successful production from Kraken is positive news for the whole basin. It has the potential to open up additional heavy oil opportunities in the Northern North Sea, with other developments in the pipeline.
“It’s particularly pleasing to see a project delivered under budget, having clearly benefitted from a strong partnership between operator and key service providers.”
Meanwhile, Aberdeen-based Wood Group has extended its collaborative agreement with Canadian technology company Librestream Technologies to provide advanced digitally-enabled solutions for oil and gas customers for 12 months.
One such product is Wood Group’s eXpert technology which has been used by major operators in the UK.
This technology connects specialists based onshore directly with the remote worksite, via real-time audio and visual display, to review issues and collaborate on a resolution.