Image courtesy of Øyvind Hagen/ Statoil.

Statoil’s disappointing streak of Arctic finds continued Friday after only a “small gas discovery” was made at the Isfjell well in the Barents Sea.

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate had estimated that Isfjell contained 1 billion to 2 billion cubic meters of gas.

Statoil has not disclosed the exact size of the find, only commenting that it was “small.”

Statoil is the operator of the field with a 50 percent stake. Italy’s Eni holds a 30 percent stake and Norway’s Petoro holds a 20 percent stake.

The Isfjell well is located in blocks 7220/2 and 7220/3, about 21 miles north of the Johan Castberg field.

Isfjell was drilled with the Transocean Spitsbergen.

Statoil is moving the Spitsbergen to its Saturn prospect, the last Barents Sea exploration well the company will drill this year.

Statoil has been unable to match its earlier Arctic success. The company has seen a string of smaller than anticipated finds in the Barents Sea since 2013.

In September, Statoil made a gas discovery in the Pingvin prospect with estimated reserves between 30 million to 120 million barrels of oil.

However, most of the company’s Barents finds have been dubbed non-commercial.

Statoil suspended two offshore projects and is laying off employees and cutting back on investments to boost profits.

Flagging North Sea production has dropped Statoil’s total output by half since 2000.


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