Seismic work continues in Arctic despite sanctions: Russia

Russia’s Energy Minister Aleksander Novak  in Moscow on Aug. 29, 2014. (Ivan Sekretarev/AP)
Russia’s Energy Minister Aleksander Novak in Moscow on Aug. 29, 2014. (Ivan Sekretarev/AP)
Western sanctions have made drilling in the Russian Arctic difficult, but seismic works continue and will be completed according to plan, says Russia’s Minister of Energy Aleksander Novak.

“As you know, last year turned out to be complicated,” Novak said at a meeting in the State Duma. “The industry simultaneously experienced several serious challenges: the sanctions imposed by the EU and the US, a significant reduction in prices of the main products from the fuel and energy sector, worsening financial and economic conditions and difficulties in attracting funding,” he said according to Rossiyskaya Gazeta.

Arctic reserves ‘key’ to Russia’s future

According to Novak, Russian oil and gas companies are handling the problems well, and the key indicators of the sector are stable. Development of hard-to-reach reserves in the Arctic are Russia’s future, Novak said, and added that production of Arctic oil will start in 2025.

As BarentsObserver reported, Rosneft plans to spend 764 million rubles (€12.4 million) on seismic mapping in the Kara Sea. The company has also announced that it will not conduct any well drilling in the Kara Sea, or in any other parts of the Arctic this summer. In addition, the company has requested government for a two years extension of license terms in 12 offshore Arctic projects.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada:  Canada ponders exceptions to relief well rule for Arctic oil drilling, Alaska Dispatch

Finland: Finns still sharply divided over wind power, Yle News

Greenland: Arctic oil and gas must stay in ground to restrict warming to 2°C says study, Blog by Mia Bennett

Iceland:  From Arctic Circle 2013-2014, a big drop in the price of oil, Blog by Mia Bennett

Norway: Oil, Industry and Arctic Sustainability, Deutsche Welle’s Ice-Blogger

Russia: Rosneft readies more Kara Sea mapping, Barents Observer

Sweden: Lower electricity bills for Swedes, Radio Sweden

United States: U.S. agency explains report on Arctic oil spills, Alaska Dispatch News


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