Rosneft sees hydrocarbon resource development on the continental shelf as a key strategic direction for its growth.
The Russian shelf has the largest area in the world – over 6 million sq km. Rosneft holds the biggest pool of licences on the continental shelf and carries out a full range of exploration operations in the seas of the Russian Arctic, Russian Far East, and the south Russia. The Company’s offshore projects lay the groundwork for the future of the modern Russia, spurring sustainable socio-economic development, propelling industry modernisation, fostering high-tech innovation and robotisation, facilitating the upgrade of coastal and transport infrastructure, and unlocking new talent.
Rosneft owns 55 licence areas on the Russian continental shelf, with an aggregate resource potential of 41 btoe as at 31 December 2019. 19 of these licence areas are located in the waters of the Western Arctic (the Pechora, Barents and Kara seas), nine licence areas in the Eastern Arctic (the Laptev, Chukchi and East Siberian seas), 20 offshore areas in the Russian Far East (the seas of Okhotsk and Japan), and seven licence areas in the seas of the south Russia (the Black, Caspian and Azov seas) (see Figure 1).
Offshore Exploration in Russia
In 2019, in line with its licence commitments, Rosneft continued exploration and prospecting for oil and gas in offshore areas in the Russian Arctic, Far East, and in the seas of the south Russia.
2D/3D SEISMIC SURVEYS
In the 2019 field season, Rosneft completed 2D seismic surveys of 250 linear km in the transition zone of the Tsentralno-Tatarsky licence area off Sakhalin Island. The works were carried out ahead of the schedule stipulated by the licence.
3D seismic surveys of 865 sq km were conducted for the Sakhalin- 1 Project. 2D seismic surveys of 310 linear km were completed on the Severo-Kaspiyskaya licence area. The seismic findings will provide the basis for informed decisions on further exploration of the licence areas.
The well construction at the Vostochno-Pribrezhny licence area was completed in December 2019. The bottomhole depth is 3,047 m. The entire scope of the planned well surveys was carried out, including cased-hole tests. The Dagi suite’s oil and gas bearing capacity was confirmed. The State Commission for Mineral Reserves registered the discovery of the Vostochno-Pribrezhnoye field and booked 2.6 mmt of C1+C2 recoverable oil.
Field geology expeditions
The Company continues to develop and update the regional models of Russian and foreign offshore fields located in the areas of its presence and interest (Russia’s Arctic, Far Eastern and Southern seas, as well as foreign waters). Three onshore field geology expeditions were organised to mitigate the sub-surface risk related to certain elements of petroleum systems (source rocks for oil and gas, reservoir rocks, and cap rocks) within the Company’s offshore licence areas in the Far East and the Arctic, including Sakhalin, the Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago, and the New Siberian Islands. Representative rock samples were collected for laboratory analysis, whose results are used to update the geological model of the region and the survey areas.
Soil surveys were performed on the site selected for drilling of an exploration well at the offshore Kaigansko-Vasyukanskoye Sea field near Sakhalin.
The results of comprehensive marine surveys provided full sets of data for well design and construction in the licence areas, including for engineering and environmental protection. Detailed data on soil composition in the area will allow experts to predict geological and geological engineering processes and address risks that might arise during the drilling phase.
The following environmental protection activities were carried out under licence obligations.
The mouths of previously drilled wells were inspected in the Kara Sea, the Sea of Okhotsk, and the Black Sea. All work was carried out in line with the requirements of the Russian HSE laws. The technical condition of the inspected wellheads was satisfactory, with no hydrocarbon leakages detected.
Artificial reproduction of aquatic biological resources was conducted to compensate for any potential damage to water life and its habitats. While implementing the biodiversity preservation programme for the Company’s licenсe areas, we prepared a reasonable list of indicator species to assess the sustainability of Arctic ecosystems and analysed the occurrence rates for various species existing in these areas.