Norwegian bid for oil companies anger environmentalists – EURACTIV.com
The announcement on June 9 by the Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy calling on oil companies to request exploration blocks has shocked environmental groups, including Greenpeace.
The available blocks are located on the country’s continental shelf in “mature” areas, known as predefined areas. According to the ministry’s announcement, “in these areas, the expected size of discoveries is declining.”
But, smaller discoveries “can be profitable when viewed in conjunction with other discoveries and / or can use existing or planned infrastructure.” Therefore, the timely exploration of these areas is important, ”the ministry said.
Licenses will be granted to limited liability companies registered in Norway or another country in the European Economic Area.
Of the 84 blocks open to research, four are in the North Sea and 10 in the Norwegian Sea. Even if no new area should be opened, environmentalists are especially irritated by the 70 blocks located to the north, in the fragile area of the Barents Sea.
However, Greenpeace Norway‘s program director Frode Pleym told the Barents Observer he blamed the government for the “black oil policy” and the failure to meet its climate obligations, wondering if there were “adults in the house”. (Pekka Vänttinen | EURACTIV.com)