• Oil production in the Kharyaga field in the North-West of Russia started in 1999. Statoil is a partner in the field development on production sharing agreement (PSA) terms. The French company Total is the operator.

    FOTO: Total

Oil spill from Russian field Kharyaga

An oil spill is polluting the tundra surrounding the Kharyaga field installations in northern Russia.

Update: The responsibility for the spill might lie at Lukoil.

A total of 3,5 square kilometers of tundra has been polluted by the spill, which took place on October 2. The spill was caused by a loss of pressure in a pipe installation, RIA Novosti reports according to BarentsObserver.com.

About 30 people now work on the site to clean up the spilled oil. Also specialists from Lukoil have been engaged, a representative of the local Ministry of Emergency Situations informs. The cleanup operation is planned completed in the course of two weeks.

The spilled oil reportedly comes from a pipe which does not belong to the Kharyaga partners, company sources told BarentsObserver.

The responsibility for the spill might lie at Lukoil, which recently opened a new pipeline connection between Kharyaga and the company's Yuzhno Khilchuyu field, enabling the Kharyaga owners to export their oil though the port terminal of Varandey.

 

The Kharyaga field was discovered in 1970. Being a part of Timan-Pechora basin, it is located in Nenets Autonomous District, 60 km north of the polar circle on permafrost soil.
The weather is particularly harsh at the rig site with a temperature far below 0°C from October to June. The average temperature is around -20°C and recent records show down to -53°C in winter time, without considering the wind chill effect.

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