​An exploration well is being drilled in the North Sea, but for the first time the objective is not to find oil or gas. The well is being drilled south of the Troll field to examine whether the reservoir in the Johansen Formation is suitable for storage of carbon dioxide.

The project which the West Hercules rig is responsible for, is named the Northern Lights project. It consists of Equinor, Shell and Total, will drill wildcat well 31/5 Eos.

This is the first well to be drilled taking advantage of license 001.  The purpose of the well is to prove sandstone and the potential storage of carbon dioxide in the Cook and Johansen geological formations. Additionally, the project wants to examine the sealing properties of the overlying Dunlin shale.

If the well shows reservoir properties, subsequently a decision will be made to use the formations for carbon dioxide storage. The first carbon dioxide injection will be drilled separately from the wildcat well.

Equinor and its companies have an exploitation license for storage of carbon dioxide in January for 12-months. The Northern Lights project will submit a plan for growth and operation in the spring.

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