Norwegian oil giant Statoil has failed to find oil at its Apollo prospect in the Barents Sea.
The wildcat well 7324/2-1 was drilled 45 kilometres north of the 7324/8-1 “Wisting Central” discovery, and 350 kilometres north of Hammerfest.
The primary exploration target for the well was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks from the Middle Jurassic to Late Triassic Age (the Realgrunnen sub-group).
The secondary exploration target was to prove petroleum in reservoir rocks from the Late Triassic Age (the Snadd formation).
Well 7324/2-1 encountered reservoir rocks about 15 metres thick and with good reservoir quality, in the Stø formation in the Realgrunnen sub-group. In the Snadd formation, about 170 metres of reservoir rocks were encountered, with mostly poor reservoir quality and just a few metres with good reservoir quality. The well is dry.
Data acquisition and sampling have been carried out. This is the first exploration well in production licence 615. The licence was awarded in the 21st licensing round in 2011. The well was drilled to a vertical depth of 1050 metres below the sea surface, and was terminated in the Snadd formation from the Late Triassic. Water depth at the site is 443 metres. The well has been permanently plugged and abandoned. Well 7324/2-1 was drilled by the Transocean Spitsbergen drilling rig, which will now drill wildcat well 7325/1-1 in the same production licence.
Drilling in the area has spurred protests by Greenpeace who claim that an oil spill there could harm the nearby Bear Island. Protesting against Statoil’s drilling in the licence, on the morning of 27 May Greenpeace activists boarded the drilling rig Transocean Spitsbergen. They were later removed from the rig by police.