Resource report 2019

Discovery and fields



Petroleum operations rank as one of Norway’s most important industries. Oil and gas have yielded huge revenues, which have contributed to developing Norwegian prosperity. Resources on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS) are sufficient for this business to continue over many decades.


Total recoverable resources on the NCS at 31 December 2018 were estimated to be 15.6 billion standard cubic metres (scm) of oil equivalent (oe), including quantities already produced.


At 31 December 2018, there were 85 discoveries where the licensees have yet to submit a PDO to the government. These contain total recoverable resources of 660 million scm oe, and represent 15 per cent of remaining discovered petroleum resources.


Reserves in fields have increased substantially in recent years. Combined with cost cuts, that has yielded high value creation. To maintain this position, the licensees must continue to mature resources to reserves and decide on measures to improve recovery.

The challenging barrels

A study conducted by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) in the autumn of 2018 showed that large quantities of oil and gas are contained in tight reservoirs. It is important that the companies work to achieve profitable recovery of these volumes.

Emissions, discharges and the environment

Concern for the natural environment has always been an integral part of ­managing Norway’s oil and gas resources, and is taken into account in every phase – from exploration, development and operation to field cessation. The industry is subject to strict regulations covering both emissions to the air and discharges to the sea.