North Norwegian Surveying and Sample Processing

16th August 2017

The environmental division of Gardline Geosurvey Limited (GGL) was commissioned to complete a seabed investigation and environmental baseline survey at two proposed well locations (PWLs) within the Northern Norwegian Sea in an area where limited development to date has occurred. The purpose of the survey was to acquire shallow geophysical and environmental data in order to determine the water depths, seabed sediment types and shallow geology around the two PWLs. Furthermore, the environmental objectives were to verify that the mitigation zone around the two PWLs were free from “good” or “excellent” condition coral reefs, sponge aggregation or other sensitive habitats or species and to collect baseline survey data suitable for an Environmental Statement to be issued.
 
The survey required detailed visual investigation of the seabed with a drop down camera followed by seabed sampling with a box corer for physico‑chemical parameters and macrofauna identification. The variety of physico-chemical parameters included PSA, organic matter analyses, in addition to a suite of hydrocarbon analyses and a large array of metal concentrations. The macrofauna identification was completed by the MESL laboratory and analyses investigating the species richness, diversity, evenness and abundance of the benthic community were conducted by the environmental division of GGL.
 
The PSA analyses for all Gardline awarded projects are conducted in‑house by a dedicated team of highly experienced laboratory personnel, whilst the physico‑chemical data were subcontracted to an external chemical laboratory.
 
The deep water Norwegian Sea samples that the MESL laboratory was commissioned to analyse were taken from approximately the same latitude as the Arctic Circle from depths of between 1136 and 1226m. A set of 48 samples were analysed from the two PWLs in this deepwater study. A total of 137 different taxa were identified by the analysts in the laboratory who were incredibly excited to be able to use their taxonomic skills on this set of interesting northern deep water animals.

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