Equinor transfers operatorship for Gulf of Mexico field to Shell

Source: press release, 29 June 2022

photo: Equinor ASA/Arne Reidar Mortensen
photo: Equinor ASA/Arne Reidar Mortensen

Equinor has agreed to sell to Shell 51% of its interest in the North Platte deep water development project in the US Gulf of Mexico. Equinor will retain 49% interest in the project, and Shell will become the new operator of the field.

To reflect this change, Equinor and Shell have agreed to rename the North Platte development to the Sparta development.

Sparta straddles four blocks of the Garden Banks area, 275 kilometres off the coast of Louisiana in approximately 1,300 metres of water depth. Front-end engineering and design (FEED) has been matured for the project. Equinor and Shell will now work closely to review the work that has been completed and to update the development plan.

Since 2005 Equinor has built up a sizable position in the Gulf of Mexico, which offers some of the highest value, lowest carbon intensity oil and gas production in the company’s portfolio.

“Equinor has long-term view of Sparta as a high-quality project with a clear strategic fit for the company. Sparta will strengthen our position in the Gulf of Mexico as well as our overall role as a reliable energy supplier to the US,” says Chris Golden, Senior Vice President, U.S. Upstream, Exploration and Production International.

“This is a development opportunity that is expected to add significant value with lower carbon emissions intensity. We are pleased to welcome Shell and look forward to sharing our experience and technology to move this valuable project forward,” says Golden.

The transaction is subject to customary conditions and authority approval.