Equinor gets consent for Autumn start up of Aasta Hansteen

The topside for Statoil's Aasta Hansteen platform
The topside for Statoil's Aasta Hansteen platform

Equinor has been granted consent to start-up its massive Aasta Hansteen gas field by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD).

The development is estimated to hold 55.6billion cubic feet of gas when coupled with the Snefrid Nord discovery made in 2015.

Equinor aims to start production in Autumn this year.

The NPD said the development will ensure gas exports from Norway for “years to come”.

Aasta Hansteen is nearly 200miles from land in the Norwegian Sea and the gas produced will be exported to Norway and the UK.

The NPD’s assistant director for development and operations for the region, Kalmar Ildstad said: “Start-up of Aasta Hansteen opens the door for gas production from a completely new province in the northern Norwegian Sea.

“After the project was approved by the Storting in 2013, several other interesting discoveries have already been made in the area.

“A development of these resources will naturally make use of the Aasta Hansteen facility for gas processing and transport.

“The production from the Aasta Hansteen field and other discoveries in the area will therefore contribute to ensuring long-term gas export from the Norwegian Shelf in the years to come.”

Equinor has a 51% stake in the project, along with partners Wintershall (24%), OMV Norge (15%) and ConocoPhillips (10%).