OGA offers new oil and gas exploration blocks

The Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) has launched its 30th round of offshore licensing. The offering focuses on mature areas of the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) and includes 813 blocks […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

The Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) has launched its 30th round of offshore licensing.

The offering focuses on mature areas of the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) and includes 813 blocks or part blocks, totalling an area of more than 28 million acres.

Blocks are on offer in the Southern, Central and Northern North Sea, the West of Shetland and East Irish Sea, featuring a large inventory of prospects and undeveloped oil and gas discoveries.

To support companies in their technical assessments, the OGA recently released around 140 sets of data on undeveloped discoveries included in the offering.

Of these, around 60 have in-depth subsurface data and historical information available.

Andy Samuel, OGA Chief Executive, said: “The 30th Licensing Round offers companies a significant opportunity to rebuild their portfolios.

“We are encouraging companies to take a fresh look at large areas of acreage, some of which has not been available since 1965 and make best use of the recently released information and new data packs to inform their applications.”

The 30th round is open until 21 November 2017, with decisions expected to be made in the second quarter of 2018.

A new initiative is estimated to help deliver benefits worth £406 million a year for oil and gas operators in the UKCS.