GEMS stands for ‘Gateway to the Ems’ and refers to a location in the North Sea north of the mouth of the River Ems. There are hundreds of gas fields in the North Sea. These are called small fields because of their limited size.
In 2017, ONE-Dyas discovered that natural gas can be extracted from a new small field: field N05-A. It is very likely that other small fields can be developed in the vicinity of this field as well. The GEMS project covers the entire area within which these small fields fall, i.e. both in the Dutch and German parts of the North Sea. The project focuses primarily on the development of field N05-A. The number refers to the block in which the field is located. The North Sea is divided into blocks and each block has its own number. Block N05-A is located about 20 kilometres off the coast of the uninhabited island of Rottumerplaat. Dutch island Schiermonnikoog and the German island of Borkum are at about the same distance. The North Sea is about twenty-five metres deep at this location, and the gas field itself is four kilometres deep in the subsurface.
An exploratory drilling was used to demonstrate that natural gas is present in block N05-A. This is called the ‘discovery’. There are several ‘prospects’ in the immediate vicinity of the N05-A field. These are fields where natural gas is probably also present. Exploration wells will have to show whether this concerns economically producible gas.
Possible further exploration
There may be even more gas fields within the boundaries of the ONE-Dyas licence areas. Some of them have already been mapped. Seismic surveys will have to reveal whether there are more gas fields in the area.