Recent activity

The activity level on the Norwegian shelf has been high in recent years. Several new fields have been approved to be developed, and several ongoing field development projects are close to completion or have recently come on stream. Simultaneously, large investments have been made on producing fields to improve recovery. In 2023, a total of 233 million Sm³ o.e. has been produced. At year-end, 92 fields were in production.
The activity level on the Norwegian shelf has been high in recent years. Several new fields have been approved to be developed, and several ongoing field development projects are close to completion or have recently come on stream. Simultaneously, large investments have been made on producing fields to improve recovery. In 2023, a total of 233 million Sm³ o.e. has been produced. At year-end, 92 fields were in production.
Production levels Field developments Johan Sverdrup Investments Outlook

Since production started on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS) in 1971, oil and gas have been produced from a total of 123 fields. At the end of 2023, 92 fields were in production: 67 in the North Sea, 23 in the Norwegian Sea and two in the Barents Sea. Overall production from these fields was 233 million standard cubic metres of oil equivalents (Sm3 o.e.) in 2023, about 12 per cent lower than in the peak year of 2004, but at the same level as in 2022.

Production levels

For the next few years, total production on the NCS is expected to be relatively stable, as the decline in production from aging fields is anticipated to be at the same level as the production from new fields that come on stream. In the long term, the number and size of new discoveries will be of crucial importance to the production level.

Gas currently accounts for around half of the total production, and this proportion is expected to continue for several years. By comparison, gas accounted for about 30 per cent of the Norwegian petroleum production in the record year of 2004.

Historical and expected production in Norway, 1970-2028

Updated: 14.05.2024

Source: Norwegian Offshore Directorate

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Historical and expected production in Norway, 1970-2028
In the long term, the number and size of new discoveries will be of crucial importance to the production level

Several of the large, aging fields still have substantial remaining reserves. The activity level on producing fields will remain high in the years ahead. These fields will account for the bulk of production in the coming years. Moreover, the resource base for existing facilities increases when small, neighbouring discoveries are tied-in to the existing infrastructure.

It is possible to increase recovery from many of these fields beyond existing plans. The licensees on the NCS are continuously working on new projects to increase recovery from existing fields. It is important for the licensees to find profitable ways of improving recovery and making operations more efficient on existing fields. In addition, existing and new commercially viable discoveries need to be tied-in to existing infrastructure to utilise the production and transport capacity in mature areas in the years ahead.

See resource management in mature areas for more detailed information.

Production history and forecast distributed per resource category, 2019-2033

Updated: 14.05.2024

Source: Norwegian Offshore Directorate (Gas is normalised at 40 MJ)

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Production history and forecast distributed per resource category, 2019-2033

A large number of fields are in production on the Norwegian continental shelf, and several new fields will come on stream during the next few years. It is therefore expected that the production will remain relatively high in the next decade.

See article about production forecasts for more detailed information.

Photo: Ministry of Energy

Field developments and development projects

Four new fields came into production in 2023: Fenja and Bauge in the Norwegian Sea, and Tommeliten A and Breidablikk in the North Sea. In addition, the development projects Frosk (as part of the Bøyla field), Kobra East and Gekko (as part of Alvheim field) and Blåbjørn (as part of Åsgard field) were completed. Furthermore, Hywind Tampen, Norway's first floating offshore wind farm, was completed and put into full operation in 2023. It is the first wind farm to supply oil and gas installations with electricity and is connected to the Gullfaks and Snorre fields.

At year-end, about 80 discoveries were, or could be, considered for development. Most of them are small and will be developed as satellites to existing fields. Stand-alone developments are planned for the largest discoveries, but several smaller discoveries could build new infrastructure through collaborated development solutions.

In 2023, the authorities approved a record-breaking number of new development projects. The largest of these projects are Yggdrasil (Munin, Hugin and Fulla) and Valhall/Fenris. In addition, plans were approved for the development and operation of Halten Øst, Tyrving, Irpa, Verdande, Symra, Ørn, Idun Nord, Alve Nord and Berling. Amended plans for the development and operation of Snøhvit Future, Maria phase 2, Draugen and Njord were also approved.

The table below shows the estimated reserves in fields under development. Please note that the table is continuously updated.

Reserves in fields under development

All volumes in million Sm³ o.e.

Source: Norwegian Offshore Directorate

Print table Download data Reserves in fields under development

Reserves in fields under development – All volumes in million Sm³ o.e.

At the year-end of 2023, 27 development projects were ongoing on the NCS. Of these, 15 are new field developments, while 12 are amendments to existing fields (related to increased recovery, changes to power supply or development of additional resources to existing fields). The interactive map below shows ongoing development projects. Investments are estimates from the PDO in 2022 NOK. Note that the map is not updated continuously and the geographical location on this map is inaccurate.

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