Canadian Manufacturing

Statoil exits Arctic oil leases

The Norwegian company is abandoning 66 leases in the Chukchi Sea



ANCHORAGE, Alaska—Another major oil company is abandoning its plans to drill in the Arctic Ocean off the northwest coast of Alaska.

Statoil announced it’s giving up 16 of its company-operated leases in the Chukchi (chuk-CHEE’) Sea.

The Norwegian company is also abandoning its stake in 50 Chukchi leases operated by ConocoPhillips. The leases are due to expire in 2020.

The announcement comes on the heels of a Sept. 28 decision by Royal Dutch Shell PLC to abandon drilling in U.S. Arctic waters “for the foreseeable future.”

Shell cited disappointing results from an exploratory well and a challenging and unpredictable federal regulatory environment in offshore Alaska.

Statoil had not drilled exploratory wells on any of its leases.

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker says in a statement he’s disappointed by the Statoil decision.

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