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Can superstars from the 1980s renew themselves?

In the process of delivering energy with lower emissions and reaching net-zero emissions in 2050, the Gullfaks field plays a key role.

When Statoil's first exploration manager assessed the areas off Norway's coast, the request from CEO Arve Johnsen was clear: Find a field large enough to run a technology-driven company. The American exploration manager returned with the words: “To my best assessment, this is the block!” He and the team had chosen Gullfaks, 140 km west of Bergen, in the area called Tampen.

As a young oil company, Statoil had a steep learning curve, and it was finally time for the big test. To become an operator of its own field in the North Sea. Seven years after the discovery, the first offshore platform was installed.

Gullfaks A, North Sea.
Every day, everyone at Gullfaks works to optimize operations and cut emissions while delivering energy to Europe.
Photo: Ole Jørgen Bratland

Since 1986, the Gullfaks field has continuously been developed and contributed large amounts of oil and gas, and more than NOK 1 trillion to the Norwegian society. But the North Sea giant has a big challenge. The CO₂ emissions from production are over 800,000 tonnes a year. This makes Gullfaks one of Norway’s largest points of emission.

Together we will develop new energy, and we will create new industries.

We are now facing the biggest challenge of our time: the climate crisis.Equinor's ambition is to continue to supply society with energy with a lower carbon footprint and to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Together we will develop new energy, and we will create new industries. Gullfaks faces a new and vital test and must find its place in the energy transition.

Renewable energy from floating offshore wind is part of the solution for reducing emissions. Soon Gullfaks and its neighbour the Snorre field will receive power from the world's largest floating offshore wind farm, Hywind Tampen. This will be the foundation for a new industry in Norway, built on the shoulders of expertise from the oil and gas industry. In the future, it will also be possible to supply large amounts of renewable energy to shore through floating offshore wind.

Technology is important, but people are essential. Every day, everyone at Gullfaks works to optimise operations and cut emissions while helping to deliver enormous amounts of energy to Europe.

With new technology, commitment and a will to never give up, everyone can renew themselves – also a 1980s superstar from the North Sea.

This is one of many stories from our first 50 years. It is also part of the story of how we will succeed with the energy transition.

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