argus

Industrial action could result in the closure of more Norwegian oil and gas fields, with Norway’s security personnel union to strike at heliports used for transport to offshore platforms from midnight tonight.

Security guards will begin strike action at heliports at midnight local time tonight, the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions has said. This is in addition to the strikes planned at the Nyhamna gas processing plant.

The industrial action will result in the closure of three out of the six heliports used for transport to Norway’s offshore platforms, while two others will operate at partial capacity, the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association (Noga) told Argus this morning.

Industrial action at the heliports could result in a “tsunami of closures at Norway’s oil and gas fields”, Noga told Argus.

No strikes are planned at the remaining heliport at the 4.2mn t/yr Hammerfest LNG export facility. The heliport services the Snohvit gas field and the Goliat oil field. Snohvit exclusively supplies Hammerfest, which has been off line since 28 September following a fire. The outage at Hammerfest is expected to last for up to 12 months.

The shutdown at Nyhamna — which processes supply from the Aasta Hansteen and Ormen Lange fields — is expected to have a “volume impact” of 50mn m³ tomorrow, offshore system operator Gassco said this morning.

It is unclear how many fields could be affected by the heliport closures. Strikes at heliports could leave limited ability to quickly transport people or supplies to and from offshore platforms, suggesting a safety risk if production continues.

The security union strikes have been ongoing for about the last 10 weeks, but up to this point have primarily affected commercial retail businesses.


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