RWE Dea pursuing more gas in UK central, southern North Sea

Offshore staff

LONDON – RWE Dea has a widespread program of exploration drilling across the UK shelf this year.

UK General Manager Rene Pawel, speaking at a recent briefing in London, said the company will drill four exploration targets, starting with Severn, a shallow-water 95-bcf (2.7-bcm) Carboniferous prospect. If the well, drilled by the jackup Ensco 92 delivers gas, it could be tied back to the company’s Cavendish platform to the northeast.

GDF Suez will operate both this summer’s wells in the central North Sea on the Fulmar Taggart and Carboniferous Marconi prospects. The latter well, to be drilled by the Galaxy II, will be a joint effort with BP, operator of two adjoining licenses thought to contain an extension of Marconi.

However, the company’s largest prospect could be Handcross, RWE Dea’s debut well west of Shetland, which will be operated by Ithaca Energy. Reserves are estimated to be more than 70 MMboe – although the volumes are not huge, a find this size could be enough for either a standalone FPSO development tied into nearby infrastructure or a joint scheme with other fields in the region, Pawel said.

In the southern North Sea, the company expects to bring onstream this year all remaining wells at the Clipper South gas field, which came onstream in 2012, and planning is under way for a Phase 2 development. RWE Dea has additionally agreed on a platform-based tieback of the Orca field to operator ProNed’s gas infrastructure across the median line in the Dutch sector. 


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