Statoil’s route into petrochemicalsThe “Statoil article”

Statfjord discovered

Geologists from operator Mobil performed a veritable war dance of pure joy on the drill floor of Waage Drill I around a core which had just been retrieved from 2 700 metres beneath them.
By Norwegian Petroleum Museum
- Press release about the commerciality declaration and the name “Statfjord”.

Drilling had started a few months earlier. In December 1973, well 33 / 12-1 was started only a few hundred meters from the border with Great Britain. Due to bad weather, running in of new crew and new rig, it took time before the goal was reached. A whole 47 days went into technical problems and “WOW” – waiting on weather, which means that it is not drilled due to bad weather conditions.

Already on the way down, in the layers above what was expected to be the reservoir, there were signs that there could be something further down in the subsoil. Finally, the drill bit came down into the so-called Brent group, which here was at 2409 m below sea level. Oil literally poured out of it. The Statfjord field had been discovered. This reservoir would prove to be the richest on the Norwegian continental shelf.

“We realised that something big was under way when we saw the celebratory mood of the Mobil people,” Torulf Gjerdrem, a member of the rig’s crew, told Oslo daily VG in 1994. He had been an eyewitness to the wild drill-floor dance on 19 February 20 years earlier.

Mobil sent a brief telex to the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate on 22 February 1974 to report that “an encouraging discovery of hydrocarbons has been made in the first exploration well in block 33/12”. The US major first issued an official press release on the discovery in April.

Lerøen, B., & Norge Oljedirektoratet. (1997).
1001 brønn. Stavanger: Oljedirektoratet: 84.
Aftenposten, 07. 12.1973, “Boring på Brentfeltet påskyndet”
VG, 06.12.1994, “Dansen rundt gullkalven”


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