Cairn starts drilling operations in Greenland

Reuters News
Posted: Jun 03, 2011 9:13 AM
Cairn starts drilling operations in Greenland

LONDON (Reuters) - British oil explorer Cairn Energy said on Friday it started drilling two wells off the coast of Greenland, a day after environmental protesters were removed from its rig in the Arctic.

Earlier this week Cairn said the presence of Greenpeace activists who suspended themselves from the Leiv Eiriksson drilling rig for four days had not delayed its schedule. Harsh weather means there is a narrow summer window for Arctic exploration.

The Edinburgh-based company on Thursday filed a lawsuit against Greenpeace to deter it from disrupting its drilling plans in Greenland.

The company, which plans to drill a total of four wells in Greenland this summer, said that drilling operations commenced at one well on its Atammik Block and one well on its Lady Franklin Block off the coast of West Greenland.

Greenpeace also tried to disrupt Cairn's drilling plans in 2010. The group believes that tackling an offshore spill would be very difficult due to the harsh conditions and remoteness of the Arctic.

(Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Paul Hoskins)