Equinor Energy and its partners have started production from the Bauge oil and gas field in the southern Norwegian Sea, which has been developed with an investment of NOK4.6bn ($438.2m).

Bauge is tied back to the Equinor-operated Njord platform, which went through an upgrading project that was completed in December 2022 to produce for another 20 years.

The Njord platform and the floating storage and offloading vessel (FSO) at the Njord field have been prepared to accept production from the Bauge and Fenja fields, which have combined recoverable resources of 110 million barrels.

Bauge’s recoverable reserves are projected at 50 million barrels of oil equivalent, made up of mainly oil.

Equinor exploration and production north senior vice president Grete Haaland said: “The Njord upgrading enables us to tie in new, valuable discoveries such as Bauge. By utilising existing infrastructure, we can realise profitable development of small-size discoveries in line with the company’s strategy. We are planning further exploration activity in the area.”

Located on the Halten bank, the Bauge oil and gas field is made up of two oil producers in a subsea template. It also has pipelines and an umbilical for connecting the wells to the Njord A platform.

Licensees in the Bauge field are Equinor with an operating stake of 42.5%, Wintershall Dea (27.5%), Vår Energi (17.5%), and Neptune Energy (12.5%).

Neptune Energy Norway and the UK managing director Odin Estensen said: “We congratulate Equinor for their safe and successful start-up of the Bauge field. Tied back to existing infrastructure, Bauge is an example of how a small discovery can become a profitable development.”

Bauge, which is located in a water depth of 282m, was discovered in 2013. Its plan for development and operation (PDO) was sanctioned in mid-2017.

The oil drawn from the field is sent by pipeline from the Njord A platform to the Njord Bravo FSO, and further by tankers to the market. Its gas is dispatched via a 40km long pipeline from the Njord A platform to the Åsgard Transport System, and then on to the Kårstø terminal.