Statoil, a Norwegian oil and gas company, announced on March 25 that it began production on the Stjerne field, located in the North Sea about 13 kilometers from the Oseberg South platform. This fast-track project is one of five that Statoil currently has in the works.

According to industry publication PennWell, the company finished developing the well in just 39 months, using existing infrastructure rather than building an entirely new operation from scratch. Statoil plans to produce additional fast-tracked projects in as few as 30 months going forward, using information and best practices gained from Stjerne. Additionally, oil and gas news site Rigzone reports that the well was built $85 million below budget. 

In spite of the quick turnaround, representatives from Statoil said that safety has always been the top priority. 

"We've now succeeded in delivering yet another top quality, fast-track project on schedule and well inside the budget," says Kjetel Digre, an executive at Technology, Projects & Drilling (TPD), a global service provider to Statoil. "We've worked more than 100,000 offshore hours on Oseberg South without a serious incident, and at a cost level that makes us competitive on a global basis. Nor have there been project changes since the concept phase, and all this has resulted in a major saving for Statoil and the license holders."

The oil and gas industry is a lucrative but dangerous field with its own unique set of risks. Workers often put in long hours at isolated locations miles from shore, and no matter what kind of precautions are in place, accidents can happen. That being said, many offshore project managers turn to marine insurance providers with years of valuable experience that can help them find the best rates and ensure that they are covered in the event of an accident.

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