Business News

More oil pulled from far north Russia

A Russian energy company said it boosted its daily production levels from an Arctic oil field after the completion of drilling two new wells.

A subsidiary of Russian oil company Gazprom Neft said in an emailed statement that four wells were now in production at the northern Prirazlomnoye field after two were successfully started. Production from an ice-resistant offshore rig perched in the Pechora Sea has now passed 43,980 barrels of oil per day.

The full-field development plan calls for 32 wells.

In March, the company said it reached a milestone with the production of its 10 millionth barrel of oil at the Prirazlomnoye field. Gazprom Neft revised its production schedule higher after a review of data found annual peak production rates could reach 35 million barrels.

Oil from the field is transported by two doubled-hulled tankers designed to ensure safe delivery from the Arctic north. Discovered in 1989, the Prirazlomnoye is roughly 35 miles from shore in the Pechora Sea.

Advocacy groups like Greenpeace have been critical about oil operations in the extreme climates of the Arctic north, saying an oil spill in the region would be catastrophic and difficult to control. Gazprom Neft said production is planned around what it described as stringent environmental safeguards.