DONG Energy has announced the results from two exploration wells that were drilled in the West of Shetlands at the end of 2012 and early 2013.

After initial analysis, the Cragganmore exploration well is confirmed as a gas discovery and the Glenrothes well has been plugged and abandoned. The next stage will be a thorough analysis of the data to determine the viability of the Cragganmore discovery.

Brent Cheshire, Head of UK E&P at DONG Energy and UK Country Chairman said:

‘DONG Energy’s focus in the UK is on the West of Shetlands region where we’re one of the leading licence holders. The drilling of these two wells is part of our development of the region which holds up to 17 percent of the UK’s untapped reserves. I’m also pleased to say that the drilling was carried out with no safety incidents.’

The water depths of the wells were 673 meters for Cragganmore and 1,169 meters at Glenrothes and the weather conditions in the Shetlands winter months are challenging. DONG Energy used one of the largest drilling vessels in the world, the West Navigator, to drill the two exploration wells.

Brent continued:

‘The conditions have been challenging but we’ve had an excellent team on board the vessel and in our offices up in Aberdeen and the two operations were completed as planned, and with no incidents. We now need to look at the Cragganmore discovery to decide how viable it is. The exploration and development of the West of Shetlands region is all part of DONG Energy’s overall strategy to double our oil and gas production across our entire footprint by 2020 .’

As well as exploring in the West of Shetlands, DONG Energy is a partner in several oil and gas discoveries under development, including Laggan-Tormore, operated by Total. The Laggan-Tormore gas discovery will produce first gas to the UK in 2014, through newly built subsea infrastructure that DONG Energy also has a stake in.

DONG Energy’s partners in the exploration wells at Glenrothes and Cragganmore are Dana Petroleum (30% equity), and GDF SUEZ E&P UK (30% equity).